Evaluation of a university-based community outreach weight management program

James D. LeCheminant, N. Kay Covington, John Smith, Curt L. Lox, Erik P. Kirk, Tim D. Heden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


This study tested the effectiveness of a 6-month university-based community outreach weight management program for overweight/obese adults that utilized standard guidelines from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). This article also provides practical observations for clinicians desirous to employ a similar program. Fifty-one overweight/obese (34.8±6.6kg/m 2) middle-aged (46.6±12.4y) adults (42 females; 9 males) participated. Participants met weekly for 3 months to be weighed, to report weekly diet and physical activity (PA) data, and to receive instruction for weight management. Participants followed a self-selected dietary plan that included decreasing energy intake by ∼500-1000kcal/d and consuming a combined 5 fruits and/or vegetables (FV) daily. Participants progressed to a minimum of 150min of PA per week, wore a pedometer, and recorded daily step counts. Additionally, there was a 3-month follow-up during which participants met monthly but continued tracking FV, PA, and pedometer counts. Body weight decreased significantly (∼0.4-2.1lbs per week; P<0.01) during the first 3 months. Weight loss was maintained during the 3-month follow-up. Self-reported energy intake tended to increase during the first 3 months (P<0.01). PA increased significantly (P<0.05) beyond recommended minimums and pedometer counts increased significantly (P<0.01). FV intake averaged below 5 per day and did not change across the study (P=0.75). Standard treatment guidelines produce modest but consistent weight loss and improvements in PA. The NHLBI recommended approach to weight management is effective for a majority of participants and can be incorporated into a clinical program with relative ease. (Population Health Management 2011;14:167-173)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)167-173
Number of pages7
JournalPopulation Health Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011
Externally publishedYes


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