Online weight management appears to be just as effective as in-person programs, according to Delia Smith West, Ph.D., who talked with our reporter Doug Brunk at the annual meeting of the Obesity Society in San Diego. Dr. West is the director of the Center for the Study of Obesity at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
Dr. West and her coinvestigators studied the effectiveness of two interventions that were identical in content and methodology, except one was conducted online and one was conducted in person. The study involved more than 480 overweight or obese individuals.
At the end of 18 months, the researchers found that there was no significant difference between the groups. The same amount of clinically meaningful weight loss was seen in both groups.
Her advice: “If you look at online programs, you want to look for the things that really mirror what is done in an effective in-person program.”
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