People’s diet improved, and abdominal obesity and insulin resistance decreased with a one-year lifestyle intervention, new findings from the Finnish StopDia study show.Finland at higher risk of type 2 diabetes This study, involving 2,907 adults in , is the first to examine the impact of a group-based lifestyle intervention in primary health care on risk factors for type 2 diabetes. Lifestyle interventions utilized digital apps and multiple behavior change theories. The findings of this study were published in The Lancet Regional Health – Europe.
The StopDia approach was developed in collaboration with multiple stakeholders
In the StopDia study, approximately 100 healthcare professionals, including nurses, nutritionists, and exercise educators, were trained to use StopDia’s group counseling approach.
“This approach is the result of years of co-creation with medical professionals involved in group counseling. was important,” said Professor Pilvikki Absetz. He was responsible for the behavioral aspects of the intervention.
Lifestyle changes were supported by the BitHabit app, which allowed participants to select small health-promoting habits, mark them as complete, and get feedback on their progress. The app’s lifestyle library contains over 400 habits that you can incorporate into your daily life. The BitHabit app was developed by his VTT Technical Research Center in Finland in collaboration with the University of Eastern Finland and the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare as part of the StopDia research.
The StopDia approach to preventing type 2 diabetes was designed and built for primary health care to support strategic health promotion goals. Patients and non-governmental organizations, trade unions, employers, and other stakeholders should work closely with planning and participant recruitment by encouraging people to take digital type 2 diabetes risk tests and participate in research. More than 26,000 people were risk tested in one year, and the study recruited adults at high risk for type 2 diabetes.
“Over the course of the study, it became clear that comprehensive identification of people at risk for type 2 diabetes requires multi-stakeholder efforts and broad collaboration,” said the StopDia study authors. Professor Jussi Pihlajamäki, author of the study, said:
A total of 2,907 study participants from three Finnish hospital districts were randomly divided into three groups. One used her BitHabit app, one used her BitHabit app for group counseling, and she was the control group. The goal is not to lose weight, but to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by improving diet quality, increasing physical activity, reducing sedentary time, improving sleep, reducing alcohol consumption, and quitting smoking. That was it.
Improved diet quality and decreased abdominal obesity
In the group that used the BitHabit app and received group counseling, the quality of people’s diet improved, especially the quality of vegetables and fats, and the waist circumference decreased slightly, whereas the group that used the app alone No similar effect was seen.
“Diet quality in relation to official nutrition recommendations was assessed using the Healthy Eating Index developed as part of the StopDia study. Not only is it suitable, but it can also be used as an indicator of efficacy,” says Jaana Lindström, research manager at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.
“Improved dietary quality reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes, regardless of weight change. Engagement with group counseling and use of the BitHabit app improved dietary quality,” said Kirsikka Aittola, postdoctoral researcher. says Mr.
Commitment to using the BitHabit app increased physical activity and decreased sedentary time.
Using the BitHabit app in combination with group counseling slightly slowed the onset of insulin resistance, a precursor to type 2 diabetes, even without it.
“Even small changes can have an impact on preventing type 2 diabetes,” said Professor Timo Rakka, co-director of the StopDia study.
It is important to implement lifestyle interventions as part of health care. Individual wishes and needs should be recognized.
“Our findings are important because this is the first large randomized controlled study conducted within primary health care to study the combined interaction of digital and group-based lifestyle counseling. says Jussi Pihlajamäki.
The findings suggest that lifestyle counseling efforts, whether digital or group counseling, support lifestyle change. Further analyzes conducted in this study will examine opportunities to provide increasingly personalized lifestyle counseling.
The risk of type 2 diabetes in the Finnish adult population is high, currently affecting up to 500,000 Finns. The cost of treatment per patient diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is estimated to be between €3,900 and €8,300 per year, depending on comorbidities. The goal of the StopDia lifestyle intervention study was to develop a research-based, cost-effective and durable model for primary health care to prevent type 2 diabetes. Another aim is to help people become more aware of their own risk of type 2 diabetes, better aware of their potential to prevent it, and provide the support and services they need to promote a healthy lifestyle. was to receive
The implementation of the StopDia study was funded by the Health, Well-Being and Lifestyle Program of the Strategic Research Council of the Academy of Finland, and its further analysis was also funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation and the Diabetes Research Foundation. . The study conducted in primary health care was designed by the University of Eastern Finland, the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare and his VTT Technical Research Center in Finland and was conducted from 2016 to 2019.