BACKGROUND: Therapeutic lifestyle change (TLC) is a recommended treatment for patients with hypertension, but its effectiveness in community-based settings remains untested, particularly in black churches-an influential institution for health promotion in black communities. METHODS AND RESULTS: The FAITH study (Faith-Based Approaches in the Treatment of Hypertension) evaluated the comparative effectiveness of a TLC intervention plus motivational interviewing (MINT) sessions versus health education (HE) alone, on blood pressure (BP) reduction among blacks with uncontrolled hypertension. Data were collected on 373 participants meeting eligibility criteria (self-identification as black, age ≥18 years, self-reported diagnosis of hypertension, and uncontrolled BP [BP ≥140/90 or ≥130/80 mm Hg with diabetes mellitus or chronic kidney disease]) from 32 New York City churches. The MINT-TLC intervention plus motivational interviewing treatment comprised 11 weekly group sessions on TLC plus 3 MINT sessions delivered monthly by lay health advisors. The HE control group received 1 TLC session plus 10 sessions on health topics delivered by local experts. The outcomes were BP reduction at 6 months (primary) and BP control and BP reduction at 9 months (secondary). The sample mean age was 63 years; 76% women, with mean BP of 153/87 mm Hg. Using linear mixed-effects regression models, the MINT-TLC intervention plus motivational interviewing group had a significantly greater systolic BP reduction of 5.79 mm Hg compared with the HE group at 6 months ( P=0.029). The treatment effect on systolic BP persisted at 9 months but had reduced significance (5.21 mm Hg; P=0.068). The between-group differences in diastolic BP reduction (0.41 mm Hg) and mean arterial pressure (2.24 mm Hg) at 6 months were not significant. Although the MINT-TLC intervention plus motivational interviewing group had greater BP control than the HE group at 9 months, the difference was not statistically significant (57.0% versus 48.8%; odds ratio, 1.43; 95% CI, 0.90-2.28). CONCLUSIONS: A community-based lifestyle intervention delivered in churches led to significantly greater reduction in systolic BP in hypertensive blacks compared with HE alone. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov . Unique identifier: NCT01065831.
- African Americans
- blood pressure
- faith-based organizations
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine