Pedometer intervention and weight loss in overweight and obese adults with Type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis

Diabet Med. 2016 Aug;33(8):1035-44. doi: 10.1111/dme.13104. Epub 2016 Mar 25.


Aim: Although pedometer intervention is effective in increasing physical activity among adults with Type 2 diabetes, its impact on weight loss remains unclear. This meta-analysis was aimed to assess whether pedometer intervention promotes weight loss.

Methods: Three different databases were searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in English up to April 2015. Studies were included if they investigated the effects of pedometer intervention on weight loss, as measured by BMI or weight. Effect sizes were aggregated using a random-effects model. Subgroup and meta-regression analyses were used to identify potential moderators. Eleven RCTs with 1258 participants were included. All enrolled participants were overweight or obese.

Results: Pedometer intervention led to significantly decreased BMI [weighted mean difference (WMD) -0.15 kg/m(2) , 95% confidence interval (CI) -0.29 to -0.02 kg/m(2) ] and reduced weight (WMD -0.65 kg, 95% CI -1.12 to -0.17 kg). Dietary counselling seemed to be a key predictor of the observed changes. However, none of the following variables had a significant influence: step goal setting, baseline age, BMI, weight, sex distribution, disease duration, intervention duration, and baseline values or change scores for total or moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. After completion of the pedometer intervention, non-significant declines in BMI and weight were observed during the follow-up periods.

Conclusions: Pedometer intervention promotes modest weight loss, but its association with physical activity requires further clarification. Future studies are also required to document dietary and sedentary behaviour changes to facilitate the use of pedometers for weight loss in overweight and obese adults with Type 2 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Actigraphy*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Counseling*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / complications*
  • Diet Therapy*
  • Exercise
  • Exercise Therapy
  • Humans
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / therapy*
  • Overweight / complications
  • Overweight / therapy
  • Weight Loss*