Online Program

Promoting healhty eating and physical activity through beauty parlors, blogging and texting: The Healthy Diva Challenge

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Iana Simeonov, public health institute, oakland, CA
Kristina M. Hamm, MPH, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
A pilot social marketing campaign that mixed traditional outreach methods with Internet and mobile-based resources to increase fruit and vegetable consumption and physical activity in African-American families by targeting African-American women ages 18-54.

The project recruited 15 beauty salons in low-income census tracts in San Diego as launch sites. Our goal was to determine the relevance and suitability of beauty salons as sites to promote healthy eating and physical activity and validate our multi-channel approach.

Over 10 months, the pilot focused on a self-conducted 60-day healthy eating and physical activity challenge supported by salon stylists, meet-up events with food and exercise demonstrations, a blog featuring recipes, exercise tips and exercise-friendly hairstyles from participating salons, and motivational text messages.

Our goal was to enroll 100 women and collect pre and post health assessments from each. In all, 119 women joined the challenge. There was a significant change in overall health self-reported between pre and post-tests. Participants reported being in very good or excellent health (40.2% at post-test vs. 28.2% at pre-test). Total fruit and vegetable consumption increased by over a half cup, consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages decreased by a 1/4 drink, and weekly physical activities or muscle-building exercises increased.

Participants responded positively to the campaign, enjoyed receiving practical lifestyle information from their hair stylist, used the blog to exchange tips and made overall positive changes, including starting their own “mini-challenges” for better health. This multi-channel approach provided a unique model to educate African American women who might otherwise not be reached on important lifestyle issues.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Demonstrate an understanding of social marketing principles. Formulate ideas and plans for a multi-channel social marketing campaign. Assess relevant new technologies for use in social marketing campaigns

Keyword(s): African American, Health Promotion and Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: 15 years of experience in public health research, multi-year APHA, NIH and CDC conference presenter. Focus on Hispanic populations, creator of numerous national bilingual health education tools including some of the first digital tools for health workers, text-messaging campaigns, online games, apps and digital and mobile tools for public health programs and projects nationwide.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.