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Workplace E-Mail Intervention Program Helps People Sit Less and Eat Better, Kaiser Permanente Study Finds
Date:5/18/2009

Tailored E-mails Suggest Fruit Snacks and 10-Minute Walks

OAKLAND, Calif., May 19 /PRNewswire/ -- A behavioral intervention program delivered by e-mail significantly improved diet and physical activity by helping people move more, sit less, and make healthier food choices, according to a Kaiser Permanente Division of Research study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

The study was a randomized controlled trial of the ALIVE (A Lifestyle Intervention Via E-mail) program conducted among 787 Kaiser Permanente Northern California employees at their worksites. Through the ALIVE program, developed by NutritionQuest (www.nutritionquest.com), weekly e-mails were sent to the 351 employees randomized to the intervention group; the 436 employees in the control group received only immediate e-mail feedback at the start of the intervention indicating whether or not their reported physical activity and diet met national guidelines. The messages to the participants in the intervention group suggested small, practical, individually tailored goals, such as eating fruit for a snack three times a week, walking for 10 minutes a day at lunch time, or walking to the store instead of driving.

At the end of the 16-week trial, the participants in the intervention group were more physically active, eating more fruits and vegetables, and reducing their intake of saturated fats and trans fats, compared to the control group. The biggest changes occurred among those in the intervention group, who did not meet minimum national standards for exercise and diet at the start of the trial. For example, employees who were not regularly active before receiving the intervention increased their participation in moderate intensity physical activities by almost an hour a week and decreased the amount of time they spent in sedenta
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SOURCE Kaiser Permanente
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