Special promotional content from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health Department of Surgery.
The University of Wisconsin is looking for people from diverse backgrounds who want to lose some weight and keep it off.
The fourth and final cohort of the Log2Lose weight loss study is now recruiting 70 local people to join an 18-month weight loss program with group sessions, regular consultations with a dietician and follow-up check-ins – in all, about $1,500 worth, for free.
Additionally, participants will receive a FitBit and high-end electronic scale that transmits data directly to study organizers.
Principal investigator Dr. Corinne Voils said this study, which has already been running for several years, is really focused on maintaining weight loss.
“In a lot of weight loss studies, we see that people can lose weight in the short term, but they tend to regain it – and sometimes they regain more than they lost in the first place,” she said. “My lab is really focused on identifying behavioral strategies to help people maintain weight loss.”
Voils said everyone in the study will attend a proven six-month weight loss program involving virtual group sessions that you can attend from home. They will then receive 12 months of individual counseling sessions by phone with a dietician. Participants will also receive text messages to help stay the course and have check-in appointments every six months. It’s those text messages that researchers are testing – different participants will get different types of messages, and researchers will determine which kinds of messages work best to keep folks on target.
Voils said she especially hopes people of color will participate in the study, for a number of reasons.
“Obesity is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, many cancers, and other diseases,” she said. “An unfortunate problem is that Black and brown people have higher rates of obesity and other related diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.”
Not only will participation help individuals lose weight, but a diverse pool of people will help researchers understand how to help others lose weight in the future.
“In weight loss studies, it’s usually 80% white women,” Voils said. “If we’re doing studies with all white women, we can’t really tell if our strategies are working for other types of people. I want to encourage BIPOC individuals to join our study so that we can see if the strategies we’re trying work for these populations, because if they don’t, we need to go a different direction.”
Enrollment in the Log2Lose study is open now. Initial visits to determine eligibility will take place in September with group sessions getting underway in October.