Worksite study Promoting Activity and Changes in Eating (PACE): design and baseline results.
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OBJECTIVE: Based on previous worksite-wide intervention studies and an ecological framework, we created a behavioral intervention program to maintain or reduce weight through healthy eating and physical activity. The design and evaluation plan of the group-randomized trial and the recruitment of worksites are described. Preliminary results regarding the dietary and physical activity behaviors associated with BMI are discussed.
RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES: The intervention used an ecological framework modified by qualitative methods that identified salient barriers and facilitators of behavioral change. Approximately 30 transportation, manufacturing, utilities, personal, household, and miscellaneous service companies in the greater Seattle area are being recruited to the trial. The study population for the present analysis consists of 18 worksites from the first two randomization waves. Dietary behavior was assessed, not by calories, but by behavioral measures related to BMI. Physical activity behaviors were surveyed. BMI is derived from reported height and weight at baseline.
RESULTS: The intervention has been developed with a specified minimum suite of strategies within the defined framework. Response rates to the baseline survey among the 18 worksites are 81% on average. After adjusting for age, gender, race, and education, BMI was associated with frequency of intensity-adjusted physical activity, sweat-inducing exercise, fast food meals, soft drinks, eating while doing another activity, and fruit and vegetable intake.
DISCUSSION: Worksite-wide intervention strategies can be adapted to target obesity prevention. Employees are willing to participate in surveys at high rates. Several measures of physical activity and eating choices are associated with baseline BMI.