The UNM School of Medicine's Society of Medicine's La Tierra Sagrada (LTS) Society has chosen to fund three research projects in 2005 that will be studying the effect of obesity on health in the community. A dinner and awards ceremony honored those chosen to receive the grant money on Thursday, November 10 at the Hyatt Hotel. In addition to the three research awards, the Society is also placing $20,000 into the La Tierra Sagrada Scholarship, a new endowed scholarship fund, and providing $5,000 in scholarships to five students.

Awards given at the ceremony include:

  • "Type 2 Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease, Elementary School Prevention Program," Alberta Kong, M.D., MPH, primary investigator.

The Society awarded $18,990 this project pilot screening, intervention prevention strategies for use by school-based health clinics elementary schools with Hispanic populations. Students from grades 3, 4 5 at East San Jose Elementary will participate in program, enhancing collaboration between School Medicine area teachers, school administrators and parents to better address the epidemic problems of obesity among our children.< P>

  • Mindfulness in Eating and Living (MEAL), Brian Shelley, M.D., principal investigator

A feasibility study which will develop a mind-body program for people with obesity, and collect data on the biological and psychological changes in participants before and after the program was awarded $13,700. The audience will be recruited in partnership with the YMCA of Central New Mexico, who will learn skills which will lead to increased awareness of eating, emotions and judgment. MEAL will cultivate awareness of behavior and choices, resulting in less binging or overeating, as well as increased sense of control, improved mood, and eventually, reduced weight.

  • WISEWOMAN Project for Hispanics in Albuquerque, Angelo Tomedi, M,D, principal investigator

The Society awarded $11,415 to this collaborative project between the UNM Southeast Heights Center for Family Health, Community Health Partnership, and Southwest Creations to implement the CDC WISEWOMAN program addressing obesity as part of cardiovascular risk reduction for low-income Hispanic women in southeast Albuquerque. The program will include interventions for physical activity, nutrition, smoking cessation, and it will assess personal risk factors. The WISEWOMAN project will enhance the outreach efforts of the School of Medicine to the underserved Hispanic population.

Annual contributions of La Tierra Sagrada Society members are used to support exceptional programs and cutting edge research at the UNM School of Medicine.  These awards reverberate across campus and throughout the surrounding community.

For more information on the La Tierra Sagrada Society, contact the School of Medicine Office of Development and Alumni Relations at (505) 272-1913.


Contact: Cindy Foster, 272-3322