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Effectiveness of a mobile phone text messaging intervention on dietary behaviour in patients with type 2 diabetes: a post-hoc analysis of a randomised controlled trial

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journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2021, 00:00 authored by Sheikh Mohammed Shariful Islam, Elena GeorgeElena George, Ralph MaddisonRalph Maddison
Background: Evidence suggests that mobile phone health (mHealth) programs may improve healthy behaviours and clinical outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). However, data on mHealth dietary behaviour is scarce in low-and-middle-income countries. This study aims to determine the effectiveness of a text messaging program on dietary habits in patients with T2DM.

Methods: We performed a post-hoc analysis of a randomised controlled trial of text messaging intervention in 236 patients with T2DM recruited from a tertiary hospital. Data were collected on socio-demographics, mobile phone use, family and medical history, self-reported diseases, medication use, health-seeking behaviour, diet and physical activity. Dietary behaviour was assessed using a modified version of WHO STEPS and the Indian Migration Study Food Frequency Questionnaire. Intervention participants received one message/day over six months focusing on lifestyle modification. Dietary intake of fruits, vegetables, sugar beverages and teaspoons of sugar in tea/coffee were determined in serves-per-week and were analysed using Chi-square tests. Poisson regression models, adjusted for age, sex and baseline values following an intention-to-treat approach were performed and expressed as an estimate of effect size.

Results: At 6 months, the adjusted difference in vegetable consumption was −0.02 serves/week [95% confidence interval (CI): −0.11–0.06, P>0.05] and fruit intake was 0.02 serves/week (95% CI: −0.15–0.21, P>0.05). Consumption of sugar beverages reduced in both groups at 6 months with an adjusted difference of −0.34 serves/week (95% CI: −1.10–0.42, P>0.05). Teaspoons of sugar in tea reduced to 0.1±0.3 teaspoons/week in the control group, however, remained the same at 0.2±0.6 teaspoons/week in the intervention group with an adjusted difference of 0.94 teaspoons/week (95% CI: 0.04–1.84, P<0.05).

Conclusions: Our results suggest that a text messaging program did not significantly improve dietary behaviour in patients with T2DM. Further studies are warranted to explore the effectiveness of text messaging on dietary behaviour in adults with T2DM



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Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal