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Glob Adv Health Med. 2018 Jul 4;7:2164956118784902. doi: 10.1177/2164956118784902. eCollection 2018.

Total Lifestyle Coaching: A Pilot Study Evaluating the Effectiveness of a Mind-Body and Nutrition Telephone Coaching Program for Obese Adults at a Community Health Center.

Author information

1
Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.
2
Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.
3
Department of Nutrition and Food Services, Ambulatory Nutrition Service, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.
4
Division of General Internal Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.

Abstract

Background:

Stress and obesity are interrelated and common among low-income adults. Mind-body interventions have been shown to reduce psychological distress and have been incorporated into many weight loss interventions. However, few of these programs have incorporated a telephone coaching component.

Objective:

We designed and piloted a novel weight loss telephone coaching intervention for this population and examined its effectiveness on weight loss and improvements in health behaviors in obese community health center patients.

Methods:

This was a 6-month, single-arm, prospective, pre-post pilot study. The study took place at a community health center near Boston, Massachusetts. Participants were 27 overweight and obese community health center patients. The intervention consisted of one in-person intake with the registered dietitian, trained in mind-body approaches, and approximately 1 phone coaching session every 2 weeks for 6 consecutive months. Anthropometric data consisted of weight, body mass index (BMI), and blood pressure. Questionnaires consisted of the Perceived Stress Scale-10 item, the CIGNA Healthy Eating Survey, Section H: Behavioral Eating, a physical activity questionnaire, and a nutritional habits questionnaire. We used paired samples t tests to assess pre-post changes in weight, BMI, blood pressure, perceived stress, behavioral eating, and physical activity. We also conducted semistructured exit interviews to learn about participants' experiences in this program.

Results:

There was a trend toward weight reduction (P < .1, Cohen's d = 0.33) and significant improvements in systolic blood pressure (P = .001, Cohen's d = 0.72), perceived stress (P = .001, Cohen's d = 0.75), and behavioral eating (P = .009, Cohen's d = 0.54). Improvements in weight were sustained 6 months after completion of the intervention.

Conclusion:

Results suggest that a telephone nutrition health coaching intervention is feasible and may facilitate weight loss in obese community health center patients. Future randomized-controlled studies are warranted to better understand these improvements.

Clinicaltrialsgov registration:

NCT03025217.

KEYWORDS:

behavior therapy; mind–body medicine; obesity; telemedicine; weight loss

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