Chicago Center for Diabetes Translation Research: Just a Spoonful of Sugar Helps the Messages Go Down: Improving Prediabetes Awareness and Risk Communication among Hispanic/Latino Adults

Project: Research project

Project Details


Informed by our ongoing work on vicarious-affirmation (VA) and through collaboration with diabetes specialist, this project shifts the focus from communication strategies that emphasize stigma, blame, and shame, to messages that enhance individuals’ receptiveness to change by casting their Hispanic/Latino heritage in a positive light. Accordingly, this project seeks to establish that VA, through tailored messages, makes subsequent information detailing the risks associated with diabetes both less threatening and more effective, as detailed in the following two specific aims: I. Assess the unique messaging needs and responses of Hispanic/Latino individuals to diabetes risk communication. Although there is clear evidence that Hispanic/Latino individuals suffer from higher rates of diabetes than non-Hispanic Whites, little is known about their unique messaging needs and responses to risk communication. As part of our formative research and to advance more appropriate tailoring of the main intervention, we will conduct 4 focus groups with diabetic or prediabetic Hispanic/Latino residing in Chicago. Following the formative portion of the project, we will develop theory-driven and evidence-based message and conduct a small-scale RCT to compare the effectiveness of different messages on health-related outcomes among Hispanic/Latino individuals, recruited through Qualtrics. Hence, the next aim of this project is to: II. Experimentally test (using a randomized controlled trial [RCT]) the efficacy of Vicarious Affirmation (VA), a communication strategy, to foster receptivity to diabetes risk and prevention information among Hispanic/Latino Americans.
Effective start/end date6/1/22 → 5/31/23


  • The University of Chicago (AWD102383 (SUB00000696) AMD 1 // 2P30DK092949-11)
  • National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (AWD102383 (SUB00000696) AMD 1 // 2P30DK092949-11)


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