Study: Diabetes Prevention-Style Lifestyle Modification Programs Beneficial

As companies consider the program design of their workplace wellness, many focus on diabetes prevention as a key element. A new Emory University study provides additional support for focusing on promoting personal lifestyle changes as an aspect of that design.

Science Daily reports that “A new study shows that lifestyle modification programs modeled on diabetes prevention programs (DPP) trials not only achieved weight reduction, but also additional metabolic benefits -specifically, reductions in blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.”

The study, published in the PLOS Journal, is titled “Cardiometabolic Risk Factor Changes Observed in Diabetes Prevention Programs in US Settings: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.”

According to Emory University, “the researchers compiled data from 44 published studies with nearly 9,000 adults participating in DPP conducted in US communities, clinics, and through online media.”

“Led by Mohammed K. Ali, MD, MSc, MBA, associate professor in the Hubert Department of Global Health at Emory, the study offers an overview of the range of metabolic benefits possible through lifestyle modification programs and the program and participant features that were associated with greater benefit.”

“‘There are a number of studies that have shown that weight loss is achievable through DPP programs,’ says Ali. ‘Our study goes further by estimating the aggregate metabolic changes that can be achieved.'”

In fact, the findings support many aspects of a well-run workplace wellness program.

Added Ali: “Our findings are also relevant for private payer groups and providers of diabetes prevention services, reinforcing several take home messages, that:”

  • “Lifestyle modification programs to prevent diabetes can be delivered effectively in non-academic and non-clinical settings;”
  • “on average, participants in the 44 included studies were similar to participants in the original DPP trial, and achieved less weight loss (3.8 vs. 6.8kg), but similar improvements in glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol reductions; and”
  • “programs with a maintenance component (keeping contact with participants even after the core program sessions are complete) were associated with larger benefits.”