Among young adults with a BMI between 25 and less than 40, the addition of a wearable technology device to a standard behavioral intervention resulted in less weight loss over 24 months. Devices that monitor and provide feedback on physical activity may not offer an advantage over standard behavioral weight loss approaches.
That’s the conclusion of a 2-year 471-participant randomized controlled trial in JAMA of how wearable tracking technology affects weight loss.
Wrinkles: Only 75% completed the study. And both groups did lose weight: 3.5 kg in the “enhanced intervention group” and 5.9 kg in the control.
One wonders if meeting your goals with a wearable might cause some people to skip working out or quit an exercise session earlier than they might otherwise do (at least on occasion). The study also didn’t use one with any of the gamification principles that some people have promoted as making exercise more “fun.”