Thursday, September 03, 2015

UTSA trains local church leaders how to combat obesity in Latinos

Latino family

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(April 9, 2013) -- UTSA kinesiology scholar Meizi He, M.D., Ph.D., has been working with two local churches to implement an obesity prevention program targeting Latinos. This weekend, Dr. He and her team trained approximately 50 local church leaders to expand the program to four additional churches on San Antonio's South Side.

More than 90 percent of Latinos are members of faith-based organizations, making churches an ideal location to engage the community. Nearly 40 percent of Mexican American children are overweight, putting them at high risk for obesity, type II diabetes and other obesity-related complications.

Dr. He's program, Building a Healthy Temple, targets Latinos with a faith-based curriculum that promotes healthy eating, active living and healthy body weight. It is funded in part by Baptist Health Foundation.

Last weekend's training introduced church leaders, lay leaders and church volunteers to the program, which included sharing best practices from churches that already implemented the program. UTSA and its partnering organizations hosted break-out sessions to train participants on the components of the program: health sermons, Bible study, Sunday School, nutrition education and cooking demonstrations, and physical activity.

"We have piloted Building a Healthy Temple in San Antonio for two years, and it has been embraced by church leaders and church-goers," said Dr. He. "Our pilot studies have shown that many of the participants have adopted more active lifestyles. It's really exciting to have the support of Baptist Health Foundation, so we can expand the program to reach more people here in San Antonio."

For more information, contact Meizi He at 210-458-5416 or meizi.he@utsa.edu.

 

 

Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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Architecture Connects

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