29th January 2016

ULIS Update Jan 2016

What is your role in NoHoW?

 4_logo_ulisboa The University of Lisbon has two main roles in NoHoW:

  1. To lead the development of the NoHoW intervention content; a web-based app designed to achieve weight loss maintenance
  2. To help design and implement the NoHoW trial. The trial will be implemented in Portugal, Denmark, and the UK. University of Lisbon will deliver the trial to over 500 Portuguese participants.

What have you done so far?

We have conducted a systematic review of the literature on the use of behaviour change techniques and theories in weight loss maintenance in technology-based interventions. This work allowed us to have a deeper understanding of what have been tested (and what works) in this field for the last decade.

Informed by this work and a priori science- and theory-based knowledge, we developed the content for the web-based app – the NoHoW Toolkit. This was made in close collaboration with VTT and the University of Coimbra. Other partners have also provided support and contributed with important ideas for this joint effort.

The NoHoW Toolkit is central to the project, as it represents the platform where the NoHoW experiment is taking place, and will be available for 18 months to the participants in the trial. It comprises a journey into several thematic sessions supporting weight loss maintenance. The Toolkit content is organised around three key ideas: self-regulation, motivation and emotion regulation. Additionally the user has access to a dashboard with graphs representing their pattern of weight, physical activity, diet, sleep and mood, and a combined view of this data is concatenated into a “health graph”. Also, using this data, the system will provide tailored feedback to support behaviors conducive to long-term weight regulation.

The NoHoW Toolkit is now in beta-testing, and will be further tested in January to February 2016.

How will your work in NoHoW have an impact?

The NoHoW Toolkit is a key element of this project. It represents the active ingredient of the trial. Its content was prepared in order to test whether a specific set of concepts (e.g. motivation, emotion regulation) from leading behaviour change theories – and associated techniques – can help participants better manage their weight and maintain weight loss. The result of this testing will advance our knowledge of what works, how it works and who responds better to this type of technology-based intervention.

The development of the NoHoW Toolkit and its final result will be disseminated to the public, providing a much needed evidence base for the fields of health behavior change and information and communications technology in health.

Pedro Teixeira

Dr. Pedro Teixeira