Purpose: The purpose of this systematic review was to summarize the current literature in examining the effectiveness of web-based interventions to promote self-care of lifestyles related to anthropometric measurements in adult individuals with various conditions.
Methods: The search terms included anthropometric measurements, web-based technology, effectiveness, and interventions were used to search four electronic engines including PubMed, Ovid, MEDLINE, the Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), and Google Scholar. Inclusion criteria were primary randomized control studies published in English which utilized web-based interventions in relationship to actual measured anthropometric outcomes of adults with health related conditions. Further, interventions using web-based health education alone, or as a part of a complex intervention were also included in the review. Studies involving major health issues or psychiatric diseases, pregnancy, and children as participants were excluded, as were those involving self-reported anthropometric measurements. Ten articles were selected based on the criteria. The databases were searched from 2008 to December 2014. All studies were double reviewed for eligibility using the JADAD scoring system.
Findings: Six studies met criteria in this review and revealed significant associations between the utilization of web-based health promotion interventions on anthropometric measurements in adult populations with health related conditions. Four studies involving participants with obesity and overweight conditions experienced overall body weight reductions (Allen, Stephens, Himmelfarb, Stewart, & Hack, 2013). One study showed a significant reduction in waist circumference of participants with diabetes. Another study involving obese participants demonstrated reduction in BMI while one stand-alone web based intervention study did not show any significant changes on the anthropometric measurements of hypertensive patients (Shaya et al., 2013). Four of the six studies used a combination of social support, feedback from moderators and counseling in addition to web-based health promotion interventions.
Conclusions/Implications: Given the enthusiasm to the benefits of web-based interventions on healthy lifestyle to the anthropometric outcomes, most of these studies revealed that social support, feedback, and counseling also added to the effectiveness of these web-based technology interventions. The outcomes from this review may prove useful information of effectiveness of web-based programs along with social and motivational interventions relative to developing future innovative health promotion programs. These programs can inform transformative practice within the context of inter-professional and improvement of global health.
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