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Comparison of a phone vs clinic approach to achieve 10% weight loss



To compare the efficacy of a phone vs a traditional face-to-face clinic approach to achieve 10% weight loss and weight maintenance.


Twenty-six week, randomized, controlled trial.


Twenty-four men and 72 women, ages 25–68 years, with a body mass index (BMI) of 33.2±3.8.


Weight loss at 12 weeks and weight maintenance at 26 weeks were the primary outcomes. Attendance, meal replacements (MRs), fruits/vegetables (F/V), and physical activity (PA) were measured weekly for process evaluation.


Median weight loss (range) from baseline at 12 weeks was significantly different for phone at 10.6 kg (16.6) or 10.4% and clinic at 12.7 kg (19.9) or 13.7%, and both were significantly different when compared with the control group with a weight loss of 0.25 kg (5.6) or 0.24%. Median weight loss at 26 weeks was 12.8 kg (23.4) or 13.0% from baseline for the phone group and 12.5 kg (35.2) or 12.6% from baseline for the clinic group (P>0.05).


The median weight loss for both phone and clinic groups at 12 and 26 weeks exceeded the NHLBI guideline of 10% weight loss from baseline. The phone approach may be a viable option to the traditional weight management clinic for both service providers and participants.

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This work was supported in part by Health Management Resources, Boston, MA.

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Correspondence to J E Donnelly.

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Donnelly, J., Smith, B., Dunn, L. et al. Comparison of a phone vs clinic approach to achieve 10% weight loss. Int J Obes 31, 1270–1276 (2007).

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  • weight management
  • meal replacements
  • diet
  • exercise

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