The project has been funded for 2 years by a WAG food and fitness grant. During the first 18 months the project lead has worked in partnership with the exercise on referral scheme to deliver six programmes in Llanelli leisure centre which have consisted of six 90 minute sessions
Session 1-weight loss experience- getting base line results and filling in the health and lifestyle questionnaire. The participants were encouraged to discuss their personal weight loss experiences and were given information about the content of the programme. Participants were encouraged to keep a food diary.
Session 2- Changing eating habits and goal setting- Looking at the participants
Food diary's and encouraging them to set themselves goals (SMART) for diet and activity. Advice regarding regular eating and healthier snacks was also provided.
Session 3-Understanding healthy eating-Looking at the Balance of good health (BOGH) and educating on foods to include in a healthy diet and portion sizes as well as the healthier choices to be made in each group. Participants were encouraged to review and discuss SMART goals and set new gaols if needed.
Session 4-Understanding food labels-Education on food labels and guidance on what participants should look for and how to read labels. We also look at nutritional claims and there meanings. Participants are encouraged to discuss healthier shopping tips.
Session 5-Making changes to recipes and eating out-Discussion regarding participants cooking methods and healthier cooking methods. Ideas on changing recipes, eating out and alcohol were provided and discussed.
Session 6- Evaluation- End results were taken and the health and lifestyle questionnaire completed again. Follow up arrangements were discussed and evaluation forms completed.
Pilot group- Nine people attended the group and three dropped out (all female). There were two males and seven females. The age range was 29-74 years, average weight at baseline 109Kg, average height 164cm, BMI 40.5, waist 117cm and lifestyle score 79.
At the end of the programme age range was 29-74 average weight 115Kg, BMI 40.8 and waist 118cm. The average weight, BMI and waist circumference have increased due to the number of participants decreasing. However the average percentage weight loss was 1.76% and lifestyle score increased to 97 (increased by 8).
Pilot group six months- average weight was 110Kg, BMI 39.2 (1.3 reduction); waist 94cm (23cm reduction) and percentage weight lost was 5%.
Group 1-Six people attended and three dropped out (two female and one male). There were five females and one male. The age range was 51-68 years, average weight 96Kg, height 159cm, BMI 37.9, waist 117cm and health and lifestyle score 86.
At the end of the programme the age range was 51-68 average weight 101Kg, BMI 40.2 and waist 109.5cm. Once again the averages have increased due to a decreased number of participants however the lifestyle score increased to 97 and participants lost an average of 0.6% of their weight.
Group 1 six months-At 6 months the average weight was 100.6Kg, BMI 39.7, waist 109.3 cm (7.7cm reduction) and a total of 1.2% wt loss.
Group 2-Eight people attended and two dropped out (both female). There were seven females and one male. The age range was 31-71 years, average weight at baseline 100.2Kg, height 162.5cm, BMI 37.9, waist 108.7cm, and lifestyle score 80.6.
At the end of the programme the age range was 48-71, average weight 101.8Kg, BMI 38.6, waist 108.5cm, health and lifestyle score 85 a 4.4 increase and percentage weight loss of 1%.
Group 2 six months- At 6 months the average weight was 99Kg(1.1Kg loss), BMI 37.6 compared with 37.9 at baseline, waist 105 cm (3.7cm reduction) and a total of 3.44% wt loss.
Group 3-Four people attended and one dropped out (female). There were three females and one male. The age range was 53-60 years, average weight at baseline was 89.6Kg, height 161cm, BMI 34.3, waist 106cm and lifestyle score 87.5.
At the end of the programme the age range was 55-60 years, average weight 91Kg, BMI 34.6, waist 102cm a 4cm decrease, lifestyle score 92.3 a 4.8 increase and percentage weight loss of 1%.
Group 3 six months-At 6 months the average weight was 91.7Kg, BMI 34.9, waist 102 cm (4cm reduction) and % weight loss 0f 1.8%.
Group 4-10 people attended and two dropped out (one male, one female). There were 6 females and 1 male. The age range was 43-67 years, average weight at baseline 104Kg, height 163cm, BMI 39.2, waist 125.3cm and lifestyle score 84.
All the groups lost some weight by the end of the course ranging fom 1-1.8%. By 6 months weight loss had continued with all groups that have been followed up so far ranging from 1.2%-5%.
All the groups lifestyle scores increased from baseline.
The average waist measurement for all the groups except the pilot decreased at the end of the course and further decreased at 6 months for all groups except 3 which was maintained.
Improvements in lifestyle scores, weight loss and reductions in waist circumference are all positive outcomes.
Recruitment was identified as being a problem. The previous project lead decided to target graduate of the vitality programme as it was felt they would be more motivated however since feedback from participants they feel healthy eating and activity should go hand in hand and they would prefer to start the course at the same time as the exercise programme. It was decided to send out invite letters to all new participants to the exercise on referral scheme with reply slips enclosed.
Since the start of the project it was decided to change the way of recruiting participants. Previously the project manager received names and addresses of the vitality participants and sent them an invite with a reply slip attached, as it was felt only motivated individuals would apply. However two ladies recovering from eating disorders had received the invite and approached the instructors about attending. The instructors felt that it was inappropriate to use invite letters as a form of recruitment as the project manager is unaware of medical problems. After a meeting with the instructor it was decided he would give out invite letters to participants he thought were appropriate during his sessions and would collect in replys then email the list of attendees to the project manager.
Including delivering the programme in all four leisure centres offering the exercise on referral scheme. Additional time will be spent collating ongoing results from participants at 6 months after completing the programme. The information will be used to carry out an audit the project.
Training other staff to deliver the programme as part of the community development dietitian role (target 0-25 year olds) i.e. fitness instructors/dietetic assistants using OCN level 2 (community food and nutrition skills) and OCN level 3 (once available) to ensure good delivery and presentation skills.
Planning and implementation of initiatives for continuing the programme beyond the period of the grant. For example, partnership working with other agencies i.e. Local health Board and Count Council, training of other staff and investigation of further funding schemes available.