Prepared meals and incentivized weight-loss program for obese and overweight women

Oct 09, 2010

In another article being released early online, Cheryl L. Rock, Ph.D., R.D., from Moores UCSD Cancer Center, La Jolla, Calif., and colleagues, conducted a randomized controlled trial of weight loss and weight maintenance in 442 overweight or obese women (BMI, 25 – 40), ages 18 to 69, over a two year period with follow-up between November 2007 and April 2010.

The women were randomized into three intervention groups: in-person, center-based (167 women) or telephone based (164 women) weekly one-to-one counseling, including free-of-charge prepackaged prepared foods (from Jenny Craig, Inc.) and increased physical activity for 30 minutes a day, five days a week. The participants were eventually transitioned to a meal plan that was not based mainly on the commercial program. The third group was the usual care group (111 women) who received two individualized weight loss counseling sessions with a dietetics professional and monthly contacts. All participants were provided a small monetary compensation ($25) for each completed clinic visit.

At 24 months, weight data were available for 407 of the 442 women (92.1 percent of the study sample). The average weight loss for the women participating in the center-based group was about 16 pounds or 7.9 percent of their initial weight, about 14 pounds or 6.8 percent for the telephone-based group, and about 4.5 pounds for the usual care control group. "By study end, more than half in either intervention group (62 percent of center-based [n=103] and 56 percent [n=91] of telephone-based participants) had a weight loss of at least 5 percent compared with 29 percent (n=32) of usual care participants," the authors report.

"Findings from this study suggest that this incentivized structured weight loss program with free prepared meals can effectively promote weight loss compared with usual care group," the authors comment. "Importantly, weight loss was largely maintained at two-year follow-up." They note that even small percentage weight changes can result in a reduction of risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

In conclusion the authors write: "For clinical practitioners, the evidence suggests that the structured program as applied in this study provides another route for their overweight and obese patients to achieve and maintain weight loss through behavioral changes for at least a two-year period."

Explore further: Brazil to study legalization of medical marijuana

More information: JAMA. 2010;304[16]:doi:10.1001/JAMA.2010.1503.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Lose weight fast for lasting results, suggests new study

May 06, 2010

If you thought the best way to lose and maintain weight was the slow and steady approach, think again. A new study by Lisa Nackers and colleagues, from the University of Florida in the US, suggests that the key to long-term ...

Weight loss reduces incontinence for women

Jan 28, 2009

Starting a weight-loss regimen significantly reduces urinary incontinence for women, according to researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and the University of California, San Francisco.

Recommended for you

The hunt for botanicals

14 hours ago

Herbal medicine can be a double-edged sword and should be more rigorously investigated for both its beneficial and harmful effects, say researchers writing in a special supplement of Science.

Mozambique decriminalises abortion to stem maternal deaths

15 hours ago

Mozambique has passed a law permitting women to terminate unwanted pregnancies under specified conditions, a move hailed by activists in a country where clandestine abortions account for a large number of maternal deaths.

Infertility, surrogacy in India

15 hours ago

Infertility is a growing problem worldwide. A World Health Organization report estimates that 60-to-80 million couples worldwide currently suffer from infertility.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.