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193 PROMOTING HEALTHY BEHAVIOR CHANGES.
  1. I. Siew1
  1. 1University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA.

Abstract

Purpose To promote healthy lifestyle changes in overweight residents of Sheridan, MT, and to increase awareness of healthy living behaviors within the general population of Sheridan, MT.

Methods An article was written in the weekly local newspaper that included five simple lifestyle changes to promote increase in physical activity, awareness of a healthy diet, and tobacco use cessation. Additionally, a handout was designed for discussion with patients who came into the clinic that fit the target population. Patients were classified as part of the target population if they were overweight or on the cusp of being overweight. Also, patients who came in with conditions that could benefit from the suggested lifestyle changes were considered for possible intervention.

Results The patients expressed interest in healthy lifestyles through questions about the handout and about aspects of healthy living pertinent to them. Additionally, the general response from individuals who reviewed the suggestions was that these suggestions are achievable. The effectiveness of the newspaper article is uncertain as when printed, the article had a different title and key formatting was lost. However, there was a positive response about the article from people who had read it.

Conclusion An intervention to promote healthy lifestyle changes was done through an article in the local newspaper and one-on-one counseling with clinic patients. The counseling sessions were most effective, as judged by patient feedback; and although the effectiveness of the newspaper article on behavior change is uncertain, it served as an educational piece on awareness of healthy living.

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