Home Medizin Wie Selbstkontrolle und Motivation den Erfolg beim Online-Abnehmen fördern

Wie Selbstkontrolle und Motivation den Erfolg beim Online-Abnehmen fördern

von NFI Redaktion

A recent study published in BMC Public Health analyzed self-monitoring data of Chinese adults who participated in a group weight loss intervention, using a mixed methods approach.

Study: Why successful? An analysis of self-monitoring data of participants in an online weight loss intervention. Image credit: Ground Picture / Shutterstock.com

Studie: Warum erfolgreicher? Eine Analyse der Selbstüberwachungsdaten der Teilnehmer einer Online-Intervention zur Gewichtsabnahme. Bildnachweis: Ground Picture / Shutterstock.com


According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2016, over 1.9 billion adults were overweight. This global public health problem has reached alarming proportions in China, significantly increasing the risk of various diseases, including cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.

Self-monitoring, which strengthens self-awareness, promotes desired behaviors, and reduces unjustified behaviors, can be achieved by setting specific goals and tracking progress. Changes in body weight, exercise, and food intake are regularly monitored by participants of weight loss interventions. In fact, overweight individuals who regularly monitor their diet and body weight have experienced more positive responses to interventions.

Researchers have analyzed dieters‘ self-monitoring behavior both quantitatively and qualitatively; however, few have used a mixed methods approach for this purpose. Notable advantages of the mixed methods approach include its ability to elucidate the relationship between weight loss and various self-monitoring indicators and reduce bias to ultimately gain reliable insights into self-monitoring.

Über die Studie

The current study analyzed self-monitoring data from 61 Chinese adults who participated in a five-week online weight loss intervention group. In addition to providing information about their weight loss motivation and body mass index (BMI) values, the study participants also conducted daily quantitative monitoring, which included parameters such as calorie intake and sedentary behavior, as well as qualitative self-monitoring, which included: Daily progress log of weight loss.

An assessment rule assessed the timeliness of the data. A one-way repeated measures ANOVA was used to analyze the dynamics of self-monitoring indicators.

Regression and correlation analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between weight change, self-monitoring indicators, and baseline data. Participants were categorized based on their weight loss results, and their qualitative data were evaluated using content analysis.

Wichtigste Erkenntnisse

Throughout the intervention, certain fluctuations in self-monitoring data were observed. Additionally, some baseline characteristics of the participants and self-monitoring behavior were positively associated with their final weight loss results. Across all weight loss categories, heterogeneity of qualitative self-monitoring data was observed.

During the weight loss process, a gradual decrease in calorie intake was observed, indicating the participants‘ learning behavior. In the last week, participants exhibited some fluctuations in engagement, raising concerns about a rebound in calorie intake.

Satisfaction with weight loss was highest in the first week and gradually decreased. This decline in satisfaction was in line with their weight loss and highlighted the correlation between effort and outcome.

Weight loss motivation, baseline BMI, and timeliness of completing daily self-monitoring data predicted final weight loss. The relationship between weight loss, daily physical activity, and daily calorie intake was insignificant. Furthermore, no significant relationship between weight loss and daily mood was observed.

The qualitative analysis of participants‘ daily logs revealed four categories: eating behavior, awareness of weight loss, physical activity, and perception of changes, with the latter being the most commonly mentioned. This was followed by mentions of weight loss awareness, eating behavior, and physical activity.

In the probability distribution of participants‘ daily log frequencies, inconsistencies were noted. Low and moderate weight loss groups reported lower observed frequencies in all four categories than the excellent weight loss group. The excellent group reported more frequent adjustments to eating habits, higher self-awareness, drawbacks, and greater patience.


An inconsistent pattern in self-monitoring behavior was observed in individuals undergoing a group weight loss intervention. Specifically, higher levels of self-control were observed in the first weeks of weight loss, followed by a slow decline.

Individuals with higher motivation, higher baseline BMI, and those who regularly self-monitored achieved more significant weight loss. Furthermore, texts submitted by successful participants reported more detailed and frequent content.

These findings suggest that weight loss motivation and adherence to self-monitoring should be a priority. The use of digital technologies could be beneficial, as they enable a stronger awareness of weight loss and could promote healthy eating habits.

Future studies with larger samples and precise measurement tools are needed to assess daily calorie expenditure and daily calorie intake.

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