Racial and Socioeconomic Differences in the Weight-Loss Experiences of Obese Women

The obesity problem among African-American women is well documented yet weight management has been challenging for this high-risk population. This study explores racial and socioeconomic factors influencing obese women's weight management practices. Moderators led four focus groups consisting of 27 obese women. The participants were categorized by race and educational attainment—used as an indication of socioeconomic status.

The findings highlighted six major themes:

  1. Failure of weight maintenance,
  2. Psychological and spiritual approaches,
  3. Family influences and societal expectations,
  4. African American subculture hinders weight management,
  5. Affordability concerns limit weight management,
  6. Racial differences in ideal weight-loss methods.

Contrary to conventional thinking, African-American women are dissatisfied with being overweight.