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A recent U.S. study examined the challenge of choosing a good online weight loss program. Researchers found 1 out of every ten weight loss and dieting websites provided adequate information to suggest, their system followed widely accepted weight loss medical guidelines. This included information about calorie reduction, increased exercise, daily activity and food tracking.
The study examined 52 programs in the Washington D.C. area, and only 17% were found to meet minimum guidelines for frequency of clinical appointments and in-person meetings. About 50% of programs encouraged participants to keep daily exercise and food logs, but only about 3% included the minimum recommended goal of 150 minutes of moderate or vigorous exercise per week.
These results suggest that consumers need to do their homework before paying for a weight loss program.
These findings were published in Obesity on February 10, 2016.