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What's the impact of telephone-based wellness coaching on weight loss?

from Andrew Pool

In this month’s issue of Obesity, Schmittdiel and colleagues evaluated the effect of a population-based telephonic wellness coaching program on 12-month weight loss outcomes. This program is based on motivational interviewing and a patient-centered counseling style. Participants in this study were members of the Kaiser Permanente Northern California healthcare system who initiated the coaching in 2011. They were compared with a propensity-scored matched control group based on baseline demographic and clinical characteristics.

Prior to program initiation, both groups of participants were gaining weight. However, after program initiation, the average body mass index of participants in the coaching program significantly decreased compared to control participants. This suggests that telephonic wellness coaching may be effective in helping people reduce their weight. Moreover, given the large scale of this program, it could serve as a model for other healthcare systems that wish to introduce wellness coaching programs. The authors call for future research on how best to engage diverse patients in these programs. Read the full paper in Obesity. more


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