New Soul Participation

Improving your diet can have major impacts on your health, but it’s not known which diet can best address health needs. Many nutrition studies in the past have not included African American participants. For this study, we are only recruiting African American adults. We hope to learn from you about which diets work best to help prevent heart disease and improve body weight.

This study is a 24-month intervention examining how a plant-based, soul food diet and a low-fat, standard, soul food diet, may help improve heart disease risk factors and nutrition in the African American community, and help with weight loss. The study includes…

  • FREE Cooking Demonstrations with local African American Soul Food Chefs
  • FREE nutrition counseling and hands-on food preparation with a Registered Dietitian
  • Compete in challenges to help you accomplish your weight loss and exercise goals and win prizes
  • up to $210 in financial incentives
  • Physical activity, strength training sessions and more

You will be randomly assigned to follow either the low-fat, plant-based or low-fat standard soul food group for 24 months.

Do I qualify?

Participants must meet the following criteria in order to participate:

  • Self-identify as African American
  • Be between the ages of18-65 years
  • Body Mass Index between 25- 49.9 kg/m2
  • Live in the Columbia, SC/Midlands area
  • Be able to attend all monitoring and class visits
  • Be willing to be randomized to either diet
  • Not currently following a vegan diet
  • Not currently on medication for diabetes
  • (For Women) Not currently pregnant or breastfeeding (or plan to become pregnant in the next 24 months)

Have other questions?

Take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) to learn more about participation in the study.

Study Benefits

Participating in our studies is fun and can be life changing for your health. See what our former participants have said about our studies and working with Dr. Brie and her team.

I’m happy!

I struggled with my health and my weight before working with Dr. Brie.

Annie, age 60, Health Information Coordinator


I was able to lose a total of 50 POUNDS!

Patcenia, age 56, Project Coordinator

I highly recommend!

I made a lifetime change…You are in for a treat.

Peggy H, age 60, Retired Educator

Former participants share their experience

Ask us about the New Soul Study!