Review Paper: Using Technology to Improve Children’s Lifestyle Behaviors

In a recent review, the authors examined RCTs that tested the effects of technology-based applications on children’s lifestyle behaviors.

A total of 18 studies were included for review – here are the facts:

  • 50% of the studies used technology as stand-alone interventions (vs. accompanied by supplemental interventions).
  • ~40% of studies reported significant improvements in lifestyle behaviors or weight status; ~45% of studies reported improvements that trended towards significance; ~15% of studies showed no effects at all.
  • All of the studies were informed by a behavioral theory, with Social Cognitive Theory being the most commonly used.

Findings from this study reinforce that the use of technology in this field is feasible and can yield positive health outcomes, particularly when employed as an adjunct (vs. alternative) intervention.

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