, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 259-286,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 06 Jul 2012

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



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


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.


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.


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.


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.