Racial differences in obesity risk knowledge among low-income reproductive-age women

Mahbubur Rahman, Abigail A. Justiss, Abbey B. Berenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objective: To examine the level of obesity risk knowledge (ORK) among reproductive-age women and racial differences associated with it. Methods: We conducted this study based on cross-sectional data gathered from 1153 (310 whites, 491 blacks, 335 Hispanics, and 17 others) low-income women (16–40 years old) attending publicly funded reproductive health clinics in Texas during 2010–2011. Data were collected through self-administered questionnaires that assessed sociodemographics and ORK based on ORK-10 scale. Results: The mean score was 5.9, 5.3, and 5.3 (possible score 0–10) for whites, blacks, and Hispanics, respectively. Acculturated Hispanic women had mean ORK scores (mean score 5.8) similar to scores of whites. Multiple linear regression analysis after adjusting for confounders showed that ORK score was lower among black (β coefficient = −0.6; p < 0.001) and Hispanic (β coefficient = −0.4; p = 0.002) women than among white women. Age, high school diploma or college level education, and Internet use, but not obesity status, were associated with higher ORK scores. Conclusion: In general, obesity risk knowledge was low among low-income reproductive-age women, and knowledge scores were even lower among minority women. Strategies to incorporate ORK into obesity awareness and prevention programs should be formulated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)397-400
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the American College of Nutrition
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2012


  • Ethnicity
  • Obesity, ORK-10 measure, low-income women, race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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