Computerized real time feedback assists in weight loss for adolescents

January 01, 0001

Computerized real time feedback assists in weight loss for adolescents

Adolescent obesity is a growing problem facing primary care physician. This international group of researchers sought to determine whether modifying eating behavior with the use of a feedback device aids with weight loss in obese adolescents. They performed a randomized controlled trial with 12 month intervention using 106 newly referred obese patients aged 9-17 at a hospital based obesity clinic. A computerized device called a Mandometer provided real time feedback on rate of eating and intake reduction, and this was compared to standard lifestyle modification therapy.

The authors found: "Using the last available data on all participants (n=106), those in the Mandometer group had significantly lower mean BMI standard deviation score (SDS) at 12 months compared with standard care (baseline adjusted mean difference 0.24). Similar results were obtained when analyses included only the 91 who attended per protocol (baseline adjusted mean difference 0.27), with the difference maintained at 18 months (n=87). The mean meal size in the Mandometer group fell by 45 g. Mean body fat SDS adjusted for baseline levels was significantly lower at 12 months. Those in the Mandometer group also had greater improvement in concentration of high density lipoprotein cholesterol."

The researchers concluded: "Retraining eating behaviour with a feedback device is a useful adjunct to standard lifestyle modification in treating obesity among adolescents."

This study suggests a promising use of technology to assist with weight loss for adolescents, but awaits further study to see if it works in a wider variety of settings.

For the full abstract, click here.

BMJ 340:b5388, 30 January 2010
© 2009 Ford et al.
Treatment of childhood obesity by retraining eating behaviour: randomised controlled trial. Anna L Ford, Cecilia Bergh, Per Södersten, et al.. Correspondence to Julian P H Shield: [email protected]

Category: T. Endocrine/Metabolic/Nutritional. Keywords: obesity, mandometer, eating behavior, childhood, feedback, randomized controlled trial, journal watch.
Synopsis edited by Dr Paul Schaefer, Toledo, Ohio. Posted on Global Family Doctor 24 February 2010

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