Impact of Weight of the Nation Community Screenings on Obesity-Related Beliefs

Courtney T. Luecking, Seth M. Noar, Rachel M. Dooley, Ziya Gizlice, Alice S. Ammerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Introduction HBO's Weight of the Nation was a collaborative effort among several national organizations to raise awareness about the complexity of the obesity epidemic and promote action through media and community forums. The primary aim of this study was to assess the short-term effects of Weight of the Nation community screenings on obesity-related beliefs, intentions, and policy support. Methods Five Prevention Research Centers across the U.S. administered surveys at nine Weight of the Nation community screenings between September 2012 and May 2013. Adults aged ≥18 years who completed pre–post surveys were included. The survey assessed demographic information, perceptions of the documentary, efficacy to take action and influence policies that affect obesity, intentions to take actions to support a healthy weight, and positions on policy changes that impact food systems. Data were analyzed in 2015. Results A convenience sample of 442 individuals completed surveys. The sample was mostly health workers, female, college educated, aged 25–44 years, and racially and ethnically diverse. Significant increases (p<0.001) were observed for perceived self- and collective efficacy that individuals and communities can influence policies and environmental factors that affect obesity, intentions to take actions that contribute to a healthy weight, and support for policies that change the food system. Conclusions A broad, nationwide effort, such as Weight of the Nation, that combines media with opportunities to bring community members together for discussion, may play a role in influencing beliefs, intentions, and policy support regarding obesity prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S315-S321
JournalAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Journal of Preventive Medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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