The Impact of a Sixty Day Nurse-Led Lifestyle Modification Program Emphasizing a Whole Food, Plant-Based Diet on the Cardiovascular Risk Factors of Adult Volunteers

Buchanan, Holly, Nursing Practice - School of Nursing, University of Virginia
Tullmann, Dorothy, School of Nursing, University of Virginia
Williams, Ishan, School of Nursing, University of Virginia

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the United States for middle-aged (45-64 years) men and women. Fortunately, CVD is largely preventable by modifying risk factors through lifestyle change. One such lifestyle change is the adoption of a whole foods plant-based (WFPB) diet. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a nurse-led, sixty day dietary program emphasizing a low fat, WFPB diet on the cardiovascular risk factors of adult participants in the Hampton Roads area of VA. A quasi-experimental pre/post-test, single group design, was used to examine the effect of a weekly nurse-led lifestyle intervention program emphasizing a whole food, plant-based diet on the CVD risk factors of adult participants. Participants significantly reduced body weight, total cholesterol, LDL-C cholesterol, LDL-P count, and systolic and diastolic blood pressures (p<0.01). There was a significant (p<0.01) increase in fasting blood glucose before and after the 60 day intervention period and a non-significant (p = 0.126) increase in triglycerides. As for HbA1C, there was no significant change before and after the intervention. In conclusion, well-designed, nurse-led WFPB intervention programs can improve lifestyle choices and health habits. They can also markedly and rather quickly reduce the level of cardiovascular risk factors in a non-randomized population.

DNP (Doctor of Nursing Practice)
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