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Effect of a Nine-Month Web- and App-Based Workplace Intervention to Promote Healthy Lifestyle and Weight Loss for Employees in the Social Welfare and Health Care Sector: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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BACKGROUND: General health promoting campaigns are often not targeted at the people who need them the most. Web- and app-based tools are a new way to reach, motivate, and help people with poor health status.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of our study was to test a Web- and mobile app-based tool ("SoSu-life") on employees in the social welfare and health care sector in Denmark.

METHODS: A randomized controlled trial was carried out as a workplace intervention. The tool was designed to help users make healthy lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercise more, and quit smoking. A team competition between the participating workplaces took place during the first 16 weeks of the intervention. Twenty nursing homes for elderly people in 6 municipalities in Denmark participated in the study. The employees at the nursing homes were randomized either 1:1 or 2:1 on a municipality level to use the SoSu-life tool or to serve as a control group with no intervention. All participants underwent baseline measurements including body weight, waist circumference, body fat percentage, blood pressure, and blood cholesterol level and they filled in a questionnaire covering various aspects of health. The participants were measured again after 16 and 38 weeks.

RESULTS: A total of 566 (SoSu-life: n=355, control: n=211) participants were included in the study. At 16 weeks there were 369 participants still in the study (SoSu-life: n=227, control: n=142) and 269 participants completed the 38 week intervention (SoSu-life: n=152, control: n=117). At 38 weeks, the SoSu-life group had a larger decrease in body weight (-1.01 kg, P=.03), body fat percentage (-0.8%, P=.03), and waist circumference (-1.8 cm, P=.007) compared with the control group.

CONCLUSIONS: The SoSu-life Web- and app-based tool had a modest yet beneficial effect on body weight and body fat percentage in the health care sector staff.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT02438059; (Archived by WebCite at

TidsskriftJournal of Medical Internet Research
Udgave nummer4
Sider (fra-til)e108
StatusUdgivet - 10 apr. 2017
Eksternt udgivetJa

ID: 50641409