Wearable and interactive technology to share fitness goals results in weight loss but not improved diabetes outcomes

Robert Lystrup, David Carlsen, Danny J Sharon, Paul Crawford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: To investigate the effects of adding virtual activity groups to a multicomponent ambulatory activity monitoring intervention in managing chronic conditions such as obesity and type 2 diabetes.

METHODS: We randomized 120 subjects with type 2 diabetes to receive an activity monitor with or without placement into virtual activity groups. We monitored subjects over six months and collected HbA1c, weight, step count, blood pressure, and SF-36 questionnaire data.

RESULTS: All subjects lost significant weight over the course of the study (p = 0.005); however, there was no statistically significant difference in mean weight loss between two groups (p = 0.520). HbA1c decreased in both groups, but was not statistically significant (p = 0.084). Daily step counts were similar between groups (p = 0.633), but both groups did decrease significantly over time (p = 0.004). There was no linear correlation between daily step count and HbA1c (p = 0.609), but there was between daily step count and weight (p = 0.016) although this only accounted for 5.6% of weight loss. There were no significant differences found for blood pressure and Rand SF36 measures between groups or times, or group-time interactions with two exceptions. The SF36 Role functioning/emotional measure showed an interaction between group and time (p = 0.039) and the SF36 Health Change measure had a significant difference due to time irrespective of group (p < 0.0001). Compliance remained high, with 93.8% of subjects actively participating at the conclusion of the study.

CONCLUSIONS: Activity monitoring with in-person goal-setting and scripted feedback over six months was associated with significant weight loss with or without virtual support groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-448
Number of pages6
JournalObesity research & clinical practice
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2020


  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2
  • Fitness Trackers
  • Goals
  • Humans
  • Internet
  • Self-Help Groups
  • Technology
  • Weight Loss


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