News

TXT2BFiT: new weight management program for young adults delivered via mobiles


11 March 2013

Researchers at the University of Sydney have joined forces with colleagues at the University of NSW and University of Technology, Sydney to launch a world-first weight management program for young adults - to be delivered via mobile phones.

Lead researcher, Associate Professor Margaret Allman-Farinelli said unlike anything currently available, the program uses mobile phone technology.

"The program helps people to make better food choices - to eat and drink better and to include more fresh produce in their diets, especially fruit and vegetables," she said.

"We advocate for people to reduce their intake of unhealthy takeaways, sugary drinks and alcohol and to increase their physical activity.

"The program is mainly aimed at those finding they are putting on a few kilos now they are in their twenties and early thirties rather than the obese, who are needing to lose considerable weight."

The researchers are currently recruiting for young participants aged 18 to 35 to be part of a randomised controlled trial to test the program's efficacy, before making the program publically available.

"We are in the midst of an obesity epidemic and there is good evidence showing that today's young adults are more likely to become overweight or obese than their parents," Associate Professor Allman-Farinelli said.

"Weight gain during these years is very common. Healthy meals and exercise takes a back seat to study, work, social commitments, relationships and life events.

"All current programs are for children or middle-aged adults. This study is to assess the efficacy of a 12-week program designed by dietitians, exercise specialists and doctors for young adults, ages 18 to 35, using their communication technologies.

"It is free to the participant, flexible to their busy schedules, and run through mobile phones."

Chief investigators: Associate Professor Margaret Allman-Farinelli AdvAPD, Professor Adrian Bauman FAFPH, Dr Kevin McGeechan, Professor Mark Harris FRACGP, Dr Elizabeth Denney-Wilson RN. University of Sydney, University NSW and University of Technology, Sydney.


Interested participants can contact the Research Officer, Kate Balestracci, on 02 9351 3815, 0402 978 752 or kate.balestracci@sydney.edu.au


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Media enquiries: Rachel Gleeson, 02 9351 4630, 0481 004 782, rachel.gleeson@sydney.edu.au