FRIDAY, July 9, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Digital self-monitoring of physical activity and diet is an effective intervention to support weight loss in adults with obesity or overweight, according to a review published online June 30 in Obesity Reviews.

Rhiannon Berry, from the Cambridge Institute of Public Health in the United Kingdom, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review to assess whether digital self-monitoring of diet and physical activity is effective at supporting weight loss, increasing physical activity, and improving eating behavior in adults with obesity or overweight.

Based on 12 identified randomized controlled trials, the researchers found that digital self-monitoring of both diet and physical activity had a statistically significant effect for supporting weight loss (mean difference, −2.87), improving moderate physical activity (standardized mean difference, 0.44), and reducing calorie intake (mean difference, −181.71). Furthermore, tailored interventions were significantly more effective than nontailored interventions.

“Digital health interventions provide a novel public health opportunity to change health behaviors in a way that is affordable, wide-reaching, and impactful to tackle obesity and overweight,” the authors write. “Robust evidence is required to evaluate their effectiveness and cost-effectiveness as an adjunct to weight management services.”

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