Self-Management Program for Heart Healthy Behavior Among Middle- and Old-Aged Korean Women at Risk for Metabolic Syndrome

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Background:The prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) has been increasing among Koreans, and middle-aged and older women are at risk of metabolic syndrome. Effective strategies to promote lifestyle modification need to be developed.Objective:We examined the effects of a self-management program on improving the cardiovascular health status and promoting healthy behaviors among overweight or obese Korean women at risk of metabolic syndrome.Methods:A pretest and posttest intervention design was used. Sixty women participated in a group teaching session. They also received a pedometer and a diary for self-monitoring. On the basis of blood test results, women's metabolic syndrome status was identified. Thirty women with metabolic syndrome received additional tailored counseling and weekly follow-up calls for 4 weeks, whereas 30 women without metabolic syndrome did not receive any tailored counseling or follow-up calls. Twenty-three women in the MetS group and 22 women in the non-MetS group completed the posttest.Results:Overall, women significantly improved their cardiovascular health status including systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, low-density lipoprotein, triglycerides, number of metabolic syndrome risk factors, and 10-year risk estimates from pretest to posttest. Seventy-eight percent of the MetS group (n = 18) no longer had metabolic syndrome, whereas 5% of the non-MetS group (n = 1) became to have metabolic syndrome. Women significantly increased frequency and duration of walking per week and significantly decreased the time spent sitting.Conclusions:Promoting self-management for healthy behaviors might be effective for obese or overweight women to prevent metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular diseases, if it is tailored to their health needs.

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