App Plus Coaching Equals Biggest Weight Loss
For losing weight, an app alone is unlikely to get you to goal. Researchers randomly assigned 365 overweight or obese adults ages 18 to 35 to one of three interventions: One group received a smartphone app and another got the app plus personal coaching. Both were designed using research-based principles of behavior management, motivation, targeted goal-setting, healthful eating, and regular exercise. The third (control) group was simply given handouts on lifestyle change. After six months, the personal coaching group had lost nearly 7 pounds compared with 2½ pounds for the control group and just under 2 pounds for those who used the app alone. But there were no significant differences among the groups at the end of the two-year study. The bottom line: Some apps might still help with weight loss, but only in combination with other approaches.
Source: Obesity, published online Nov. 4, 2015