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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Faith-Based Approach to Healthy Eating in African American Communities
by Sheppard-Samuel, Roxann, D.S.W., Capella University, 2021, 115; 28317483
Abstract (Summary)

Faith-Based Organizations (FBOs) can play a substantial role in the eating habits of African Americans. Because the study's focus is on African American communities, and because Faith-Based Organizations (FBOs) represent the center of many of these communities, these organizations can help combat obesity in these communities. Food is often served at gatherings in FBOs in African American communities, and therefore, such organizations can focus on remedying congregants' food choices and raising awareness of other elements essential to weight loss. The purpose of this action research case study was to bring an awareness of eating habits and the factors that influence food choices intending to educate congregants about a healthy lifestyle. Semi-structured interviews with congregants and a focus group with African American church leaders and a social worker, and maintaining a field journal throughout the study, revealed food served in their community and FBOs influence eating habits. Social workers working directly with FBOs can conduct need assessments, provide advocacy, and interventions at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels that support its culture, encourage, empower community awareness, and take action. The study results suggest that congregants and church leaders believe FBOs working with social workers can successfully bring awareness of eating habits and modify foods served after service to bring about behavior changes in African American communities. This collaborative effort resulted in findings that suggested an increase in healthy foods served; incorporating social work facilitated healthy eating wellness workshops and increased sermons promoting healthy eating.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Frederick-Holton, Sara
Commitee: Jimenez, Dorothy, Slovak, Karen, Quijano, Louise
School: Capella University
Department: School of Public Service and Education
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 82/9(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Social work, African American Studies, Health sciences
Keywords: Black, Health Literacy, Healthy Eating, Oppression, Religion, Social Action
Publication Number: 28317483
ISBN: 9798582556299
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