While overweight and obesity affect one in two adults in Europe, very few of those who need it have access to medical monitoring. Faced with this situation, the AP-HP is launching online nutritional coaching “Obecoach”. Scientific director of this program funded by the Ministry of Health, Professor Boris Hansel, endocrinologist-nutritionist at Bichât hospital, tells us more.
The Obecoach online program has just been launched among volunteers suffering from obesity or overweight associated with comorbidity. An interesting alternative for all those who cannot benefit from adequate support.
Obesity, overweight… too little treatment for ever more patients
A true chronic disease, obesity requires personalized support and a multidisciplinary team: doctor, dietician, physical activity teacher, psychologist, etc. Overweight is often associated with diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart apnea. sleep… which also justify help in changing lifestyle habits. But while more and more French people are affected, support is lacking.
“A minority of people affected by these pathologies and who need them now have access to healthcare teams trained to support this change.”, recognizes Professor Boris Hansel, head of the nutrition-prevention unit at Bichat Claude-Bernard hospital and coordinator of the PuMS health channel on YouTube. “Medical deserts, lack of time for general practitioners, lack of reimbursement for dieticians, physical activity teachers and psychologists are all obstacles to the care of patients who often volunteer to be helped.he continues.
Obecoach: a multidisciplinary monitoring program
Faced with this observation and the rise of connected health, the nutrition team at Bichat Claude-Bernard hospital decided to launch the first national French study carried out to evaluate the effectiveness of a semi-automated online program for nutritional support. “This is the first time that a nutritional coaching program has been evaluated in Europe, with all the conditions met for this to be a scientifically validated study.“explains the doctor.”The vast majority of the population does not have access to a nutritionist, so the idea is to see if such a program can make up for this lack.“.
The Obecoach program can be followed online. The program is made up of thematic courses to improve your eating habits and behavior as well as your level of physical activity. “Everything is done remotely” confirms the doctor. The program is made up of automated exchanges “around moving better, with videos and quizzes that adapt according to needs“, there are also “live” sessions with “dieticians, behaviorists and specialists in adapted physical activity“, connected objects provided to volunteers thanks to donations from the company Terraillon and Colissimo and finally messaging which will allow volunteers to communicate with the team.
Professor Boris Hansel: “Obecoach is not a weight loss program”
Far from being a diet application, OBECOACH is caring support that takes into account the psychology of users. Professor Boris Hansel also underlines the fact that there will be no individual consultations. “Obecoach is not a weight loss program. The goal is not to be coached by a person who will over-motivate the patient, because we know that this does not work, in the long term. Here, the goal is to find for these patients a lasting solution, which is a health program allowing them to improve their lifestyle” he specifies.
“The weightloss expected will be approximately 5% of total weight, for the participants, this is not enormous, but we know that this loss will allow an improvement in their health parameters, such as their blood pressure, their diabetes or their joint pain.” he concludes.
NO to diets, YES to WW!
How to participate in Obecoach?
Concretely, 350 volunteers will be recruited throughout Europe (mainland and Overseas). “After a medical interview, they will be randomly divided into two groups: the first will benefit from Obecoach and the second from existing advice. An evaluation will then be made at six months, then at one year. At the end of twelve months, we will draw our conclusions.”.
The OBECOACH study is aimed, subject to compliance with this cumulative condition, at people who:
– do not benefit from specialized nutritional monitoring and who do not envisage such monitoring (other than the online support offered as part of the study) in the following 12 months;
– are obese or volunteers who are overweight associated with an anomaly which can be improved by weight loss (prediabetes or diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, etc.).
To find out more about this study and participate, visit the website www.obecoach.fr