VITAL change for mums: a feasibility study investigating tailored nutrition and exercise care delivered by video‐consultations for women 3–12 months postpartum
Vincze et al., JHND Early View
A tailored approach to nutrition and physical activity advice can support women following childbirth in managing barriers (i.e. time and childcare) to making healthy lifestyle changes. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the implementation, acceptability and preliminary efficacy of a personally tailored nutrition and exercise programme for postpartum women delivered via video‐consultations by an accredited practising dietitian (APD) and accredited exercise physiologist (AEP).
In this feasibility study (VITAL change for mums), postpartum (3–12 months) women (body mass index ≥25 or >2 kg above pre‐pregnancy weight) who were seeking to achieve a healthy weight participated in a single‐arm intervention. Participants received up to five real‐time personalised video‐consultations (2 × APD, 2 × AEP, 1 × either) over the 8‐week intervention period. Implementation (recruitment, retention, utilisation), acceptability (participant satisfaction) and preliminary efficacy (anthropometry, dietary intake, cardiovascular fitness, physical activity level, psychological wellbeing) were assessed.
Thirty women [mean (SD) age 31.6 (3.1) years, body mass index 29.0 (4.0) kg m−2, 100% married/de facto, 80% university level education] were recruited within 10 days and 27 completed the study. Women’s mean (SD) ratings (out of a score of 5) indicated satisfaction with the video‐consultations [4.4 (0.9)] and the online setting [4.5 (0.8)]. Women agreed that accessing an APD [4.4 (0.8)] and AEP [4.3 (0.9)] was easier using video‐consultations than attending an in‐person consultation. Statistically significant improvements in waist circumference, body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, dietary intake and physical activity were observed from baseline to 8 weeks.
The findings of the present study suggest that a nutrition and exercise intervention delivered by qualified health professionals via video‐consultations is feasible, acceptable and achieves positive outcomes for women following childbirth.