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Improving health-related quality of life through an evidence-based obesity reduction program: the Healthy Weights Initiative

Authors Lemstra M, Rogers M

Received 17 November 2015

Accepted for publication 23 December 2015

Published 7 March 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 103—109


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Mark E Lemstra,1 Marla R Rogers,2

1Alliance Health, Moose Jaw, 2Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada

Abstract: When evaluating any health intervention, it is critical to include the impact of the intervention on health-related quality of life (HRQL). Among those who are obese, HRQL is often lower than the general population and even more when considering obesity-related comorbidities and bodily pain. The objectives of this paper were to determine the impact of a multidisciplinary, community-based obesity reduction program on HRQL and to determine the independent risk factors for lack of improvement from baseline to follow-up. HRQL was measured using the Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36) at baseline and follow-up (24 weeks). To date, 84.5% of those who completed the program had improvements in their overall SF-36 score. Significant increases in the mean scores on eight dimensions of health were also observed. Lack of improvement was independently affected by smoking status (odds ratio 3.75; 95% confidence interval 1.44–9.78; P=0.007) and not having a buddy to attend the program (odds ratio 3.70; 95% confidence interval 1.28–10.68; P=0.015). Obesity reduction programs that target increasing exercise, improving diet, and cognitive behavioral therapy can positively impact HRQL in obese adults. Social support has a strong role to play in improving outcomes.

Keywords: obesity, health-related quality of life, social- support, SF-36, Canada

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