A Weight-Loss Intervention Augmented by a Wearable Device in Rural Older Adults with Obesity: A Feasibility Study

The purpose of this pilot study was to evaluate the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of integrating a wearable Fitbit device into a high-touch, multicomponent weight loss intervention at a local community aging center.

Results of this pilot are the first to demonstrate the integration of a commercial wearable into a community-based weight loss program in older adults with obesity residing in rural areas. Despite misconceptions that this demographic is unable to use technology, these results not only showed effectiveness in the primary study outcomes but also showed ease of use, satisfaction, and engagement with the intervention and the technology itself. These findings suggest that wearable fitness devices have the potential to be acceptable and subsequently used in health promotion interventions in older adults.

John A. Batsis, Curtis L. Petersen, Matthew M. Clark, Summer B. Cook, Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, Rima I. Al-Nimr, Dawna Pidgeon, David Kotz, Todd A. Mackenzie, and Steven J. Bartels. A Weight-Loss Intervention Augmented by a Wearable Device in Rural Older Adults with Obesity: A Feasibility Study. Journals of Gerontology – Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, volume 76, number 1, pages 95–100. Oxford Academic, January 2021. doi:10.1093/gerona/glaa115. First published 8 May 2020.

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