The impact of a stress management intervention including cultural components on stress biomarker levels and mental health indicators among indigenous women Academic Article uri icon

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  • AbstractWe examined the effectiveness of a 26-week culture-inclusive intervention on reducing salivary stress biomarker levels, and perceived stress, depressive, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms measured using scales in 53 Indigenous women in Ontario, Canada. Statistical analyses compared the average biomarker levels, and the area under the curve (AUC) of biomarkers. Differences in biomarkers and mental health scale scores pre- and post-intervention were compared using mixed models with a random intercept. Interaction terms were included between the intervention and age, education, disability, and HIV status, individually, to test for sub-group differences. Cortisol AUC post-intervention was decreased compared to pre-intervention (β -1.29 µg/dL; 95%CI -2.35, -0.23). There was a slight decrease in perceived stress levels (aOR: -2.80; 95%CI -5.09, -0.50). The associations were stronger among women of younger age, higher education, and no disabilities. These interventions can be effective, but future interventions should target Indigenous population sub-groups to address individual needs.


  • Aker, Amira
  • Serghides, Lena
  • Cotnam, Jasmine
  • Jackson, Randall
  • Robinson, Margaret
  • Gauvin, Holly
  • Mushquash, Christopher
  • Gesink, Dionne
  • Amirault, Marni
  • Benoit, Anita C

publication date

  • August 2023