Healthy living

HNRCA hosts event for African-American community

The Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) at Tufts is reaching out to the African-American community through nutrition and exercise research.

The HNRCA hosted the Tufts Healthy Living Tour, a community event on May 10 that brought together current and prospective African-American participants in research studies for a morning of health-related activities and dialog on what it means to be a research volunteer.

Addressing a group of about 35 African-Americans at the HNRCA, research study participant Jackson Brookins asked the audience to consider the value of their participation in research. He praised the professionalism and attentiveness of the HNRCA nursing and medical staffs.

Ongoing research study areas at the HNRCA include heart health and high blood pressure—two major concerns for the African-American community.

The Tufts Healthy Living Tour was organized by the HNRCA Community Advisory Board in response to a request from board member Cheryl McDermott, who is the fitness coordinator at the Reggie Lewis Track & Athletics Center in Roxbury. “Taking a tour of the facility,” McDermott said, “...will help my seniors to consider what it means to be a research volunteer.”

Highlights of the program included a talk on “Living with a Healthy Heart” by nurse practitioner Anne Charette; a blood pressure screening organized by Alice Martin, a nurse from the Tufts-New England Medical Center’s Division of Nephrology, and a tour of the HNRCA Metabolic Research Unit.

HNRCA research has contributed to information on the prevention of osteoporosis, heart disease, degenerative eye diseases and muscle loss. For a list of current study opportunities, call the HNRCA recruitment line at 1-800-738-7555 and request a general study packet.