A study in The Journal of the American Medical Association shows that weight loss may be moreeffective than exercise in reducing the risk factors for heart disease. The experiment, conducted at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Baltimore, recruited 170, essentially healthy men, average age 61, who weighed 20 to 60 percent more than their ideal body weight.
The men were randomly assigned to one of three groups for nine months where they were instructed to either diet, exercise or maintain their weight. The men in the weight loss group lost 21 pounds on average, lowered blood pressure by 8 percent and lowered triglycerides by 18 percent. The men in the exercise group increased aerobic fitness by 17 percent, lowered blood pressure by 3 percent and had a 9 percent decrease in triglycerides. Finally, the control group had no significant change in weight or aerobic capacity, unchanged blood pressure, and a slight increase in triglycerides. These findings support previous studies and the consensus of health professionals, that the best strategy is the combination of diet and exercise.
Recently, volunteers in a study funded by the National Institutes of Health found similar results. The study used hand-held computers to lower weight and cholesterol, another risk factor in heart disease. According to Dr. Albert Jerome, Director of Research at PICS, Inc., "The six month study is one of a series in which the DietMate Computer guides volunteers towards a healthier lifestyle."
DietMate is a hand-held computer that tracks, calories, fat, saturated fat and cholesterol. DietMate calculates individualized dietary and exercise goals for the user and gives valuable, daily reinforcement and feedback. Jerome added, "DietMate is effective because it helps structure appropriate food choices and provides a simple means for tracking progress."
After the twelve week study, preliminary results showed that subjects that used the DietMate to lose weight and begin an exercise regimen significantly reduced their cholesterol and weight.
DietMate was developed by PICS, Inc., the company best known for the LifeSign Stop Smoking computer. For more information call PICS, Inc. at (703)758-1400 or visit their website at www.DietMate.com
Editors note: Al Behar, President of PICS, Inc. is available for interviews. Please call Yamit Willentzik at (703) 758-1400 or E-mail