Article Text


Farming 2
Application of a diabetes prevention programme in immigrant Latino farm workers
  1. Diane Mitchell1,
  2. Gabriela Alaniz1,
  3. Xochitl Castaneda2,
  4. Marc Schenker1
  1. 1University of California, Davis, USA
  2. 2University of California, Berkeley, USA


Objectives To improve dietary and exercise habits of farm workers with the aim of reducing the historically high rate of diabetes type II disease in immigrant Latino populations.

Methods 254 Latino farm workers were recruited in an occupational setting in California. Study health workers (promotoras) enrolled workers directly from company farms. Interested employees were screened and eligible subjects answered a baseline interview, including anthropometric measurements and fasting blood glucose. Enrollees were randomly placed in the intervention or control arms in a 2:1 ratio. The intervention consisted of weekly after-work participatory education classes, demonstrations and exercise over a 10-week period. Employees were encouraged to bring immediate and extended family or friends to the sessions. Final evaluation includes interviews, anthropometric, blood glucose measures and weekly input from the participants.

Results The final participants will be evaluated Spring 2011. From analysis of 163 baseline interviews the age range was 18–50 years, mean 32.6 (SD=7.7), with subjects on average completing 7 years of school, 26.4% male. 75.5% of subjects were classed as overweight (BMI ≥ 25), 36.8% obese (BMI ≥ 30). Their estimated total fat intake was 88.7 (16.8) g per day and 98.1 (19.0) for males and females respectively. Only 14.7% exercised for 30 min or more, 3 days per week outside of work.

Conclusions Despite working long hours, farm labourers were willing to attend an after-work lifestyle intervention program to prevent diabetes. Workplace interventions are feasible in this low education, immigrant, non-English speaking population. A completed evaluation will be presented.

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