Design and Development of a Digital Weight Management Intervention (ToDAy): Qualitative Study
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Background: The Tailored Diet and Activity (ToDAy) study aims to build on the campaign by adding a digital intervention with the potential to provide wide-reaching, cost-effective weight management support.
Objective: The ToDAy study aims to build a tailored intervention using mobile technology to improve diet and physical activity behaviours in adults with overweight and obesity. The main objectives were to identify behavior change techniques for diet and physical activity (PA) change for weight loss and explore preferences for digital intervention features that would be effective in changing diet and PA behaviors.
Methods: This qualitative study uses the principles of a person-based approach to intervention development; the behavioral intervention technology framework; and the capability, opportunity, motivation, and behavior (COM-B) framework. Focus groups and telephone interviews were conducted with 56 adults in Western Australia. Open-ended questions and example intervention features were used to explore the usability and acceptability of the self-monitoring tools, knowledge about effective weight-loss strategies, and acceptability of tailored feedback. Findings from the focus groups and interviews were analyzed using thematic analysis.
Results: Qualitative findings revealed an awareness of key public health messages but a lack of confidence in how to perform these behaviors to help manage their weight. A total of 4 major themes were identified and mapped to the domains of the COM-B framework: (1) misinformation, (2) environmental support, (3) social norms, and (4) confidence.
Conclusions: This study explores users’ capability, opportunity, and motivation to perform the target behaviors for weight loss. The findings suggested that a digital weight management intervention using a mobile food record and activity trackers to inform tailored feedback may be acceptable and feasible. Participants expressed a preference for simple expert advice, digital self-monitoring tools, and visual feedback.
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