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Jay M, Gutnick D, Squires A, Tagliaferro B, Gerchow L, Savarimuthu S, Chintapalli S, Shedlin MG, Kalet A. In our country tortilla doesn't make us fat: cultural factors influencing lifestyle goal-setting for overweight and obese Urban, Latina patients. Journal of health care for the poor and underserved. 2014 Nov 1; 25(4):1603-22.
Obesity disproportionately affects Latina adults, and goal-setting is a technique often used to promote lifestyle behavior change and weight loss. To explore the meanings and dimensions of goal-setting in immigrant Latinas, we conducted four focus groups arranged by language ability and country of origin in an urban, public, primary care clinic. We used a narrative analytic approach to identify the following themes: the immigrant experience, family dynamics, and health care. Support was a common sub-theme that threaded throughout, with participants relying on the immigrant community, family, and the health care system to support their goals. Participants derived satisfaction from setting and achieving goals and emphasized personal willpower as crucial for success. These findings should inform future research on how goal-setting can be used to foster lifestyle behavior change and illustrate the importance of exploring the needs of Latino sub-groups in order to improve lifestyle behaviors in diverse Latino populations.