Original Article

Annals of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 259-286

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials on the Effectiveness of Computer-Tailored Physical Activity and Dietary Behavior Promotion Programs: an Update

  • Karen BroekhuizenAffiliated withEMGO+ Institute for Health and Care Research Email author 
  • , Willemieke KroezeAffiliated withFaculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • , Mireille NM van PoppelAffiliated withEMGO+ Institute for Health and Care Research
  • , Anke OenemaAffiliated withDepartment of Health Promotion, School for Public Health and Primary Care (CAPHRI), Maastricht University
  • , Johannes BrugAffiliated withEMGO+ Institute for Health and Care Research

Abstract

Background

A review update is necessary to document evidence regarding the effectiveness of computer-tailored physical activity and nutrition education.

Purpose

The purpose of this study was to summarize the latest evidence on the effectiveness of computer-tailored physical activity and nutrition education, and to compare the results to the 2006 review.

Methods

Databases were searched for randomized controlled trials evaluating computer-tailored physical activity and nutrition education aimed at primary prevention in adults, published from September 2004 through June 2011.

Results

Compared to the findings in 2006, a larger proportion of studies found positive effects for computer-tailored programs compared to generic or no information, including those for physical activity promotion. Effect sizes were small and generally at short- or medium-term follow-up.

Conclusions

The results of the 2006 review were confirmed and reinforced. Future interventions should focus on establishing larger effect sizes and sustained effects and include more generic health education control groups and objective measurements of dietary behavior.

Keywords

Computer tailoring Physical activity Dietary behavior Primary prevention