I was fortunate to be able to participate in the CSIRO Online Diet Study and have access to many of the resources available from the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet (TWD). I say fortunate, because after the completion of the study, participants including myself now have continued access to these resources until June 2011.
I chose to participate as I was already a waning member of SparkPeople. I wondered if the CSIRO Online Diet Study would compare favourably with SparkPeople with the extra benefit of including more local (as in Australian) content.
Although the CSIRO Online Diet Study had the usual hiccups of a new website and the user experience is rather awkward, I do prefer the unadorned simple tools. SparkPeople is a very rich or complicated web site, with many tools and resources that sometimes become overwhelming.
I’m sure the study will show that participation online achieves better results in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. But how much, how little, or what, I think will be difficult to interpret. It appears, that if you participate, you continue to progress. Whether this is eating healthily, exercising regularly, or writing a blog post.
Participation and interacting with others that share similar goals I think is one part of the answer, and being able to do it online too is an added bonus.