Obesity compounds the negative health effects of HIV-infection…
New research found that behavioral weight loss programs delivered remotely via internet can effectively promote weight loss among people with HIV, and were associated with improvements in health-related quality of life, according to a recent study.
“Obesity is increasingly prevalent in HIV–infected patients, affecting approximately 40% of HIV–infected women and 20% of men in the U.S., and adds to the risk for diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease and poor quality of life,” Katie Becofsky, PhD, from the Alpert Medical School at Brown University, Miriam Hospital, and colleagues wrote. “Given the many differences between the HIV–infected population and participants in typical weight loss studies, a randomized trial testing efficacy of an empirically validated behavioral weight loss program in HIV–infected patients is needed.”
Researchers recruited 37 HIV-infected outpatients with undetectable viral load at the Immunology Center at the Miriam Hospital aged 18 to 70 years with Internet access and BMI less than or equal to 27 kg/m2 on established ART regimens between June 2015 to June 2016. They randomly assigned patients to either a 12-week Internet-delivered behavioral weight loss program (WTLOSS) or internet-delivered education alone (CONTROL). To compare adherence, measured automatically via the website, and changes in body weight and quality of life between the two groups, researchers used one-way and repeated measures analysis of variance.
The results showed that WTLOSS participants lost significantly more weight than those in the CONTROL group during the 12-week program (–4.4+5.4 kg versus –1.0+3.3 kg; P = .021) and greater percent change in body weight (–4.5%+5.8% versus –1.1%+3.3%; P = .028). Among the 37 participants who completed the study, those in the WTLOSS group lost an average of 4.9 kg (–5.1%), whereas those in the CONTROL group lost an average of 1 kg (–1.2%). Becofsky and colleagues found that weight loss from baseline to 4 to 6 months after starting the program was significant in the WTLOSS group (–3.8+6.8 kg; P = .03) but not in the CONTROL group (–1.1+5 kg; P = .39). Adherence to the program was strongly related to weight loss in the WTLOSS arm. WTLOSS group participants were more likely to report an improvement in their overall health-related quality of life than those in the CONTROL group.
“Internet-delivered behavioral weight loss programs may be an effective approach to promoting weight loss in people living with HIV,” Becofsky and colleagues wrote. “Given that weight loss provides an actionable approach to comorbidities associated with HIV infection and obesity, further research on the efficacy of behavioral weight loss interventions for changing both weight and improving health in this population is clearly needed.” – by Savannah Demko
Author: Becofsky K, Wing EJ, McCaffery J, Boudreau M, Wing RR.