Introduction: Appetite for Life is a six-week primary care-based programme for women who are overweight, and aims to achieve long-term health gain through establishing healthy eating and physical activity patterns and a healthier weight.
Aim: To evaluate the outcomes of Appetite for Life, a primary care-based healthy lifestyle programme for women who are overweight.
Methods: Two hundred and sixty-one women enrolled and consented to take part in the six-week Appetite for Life programme via general practice and were followed for 12 months. Eating behaviours and physical activity levels were measured at baseline, six weeks, six months and 12 months. Anthropometric and biomedical data was collected at visits to the participants' general practitioners at baseline and 12 months.
Results: Positive lifestyle changes were reported that were sustained for the duration of the 12-month follow-up period. Participants reported an increase in intake of fruit and vegetables, dairy products, healthy fats and an increased level of physical activity. There was also an increase in reported enjoyment and participation in exercise. Mean weight was maintained over this time period. There was a reduction in mean LDL and total plasma cholesterol.
Discussion: A healthy lifestyle programme offered through primary care that is based on a non-dieting approach may help overweight women develop and sustain positive lifestyle changes.