"Just bring me my meals". Does this work? Maybe, with the addition of one little thing...your Dietitian

by Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Posted on Jul 2, 06:15 PM in and . No comments.

Trying to lose weight and changing dietary and exercise habits can be difficult, especially when you are doing it alone. Sometimes we “know” what we need to do to make changes but it’s just having the right support and motivation at the right time that makes the difference.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard someone say to me “I know all this, it’s just doing it that’s hard, if only I could just have someone bring me all my meals” or “do you do meals as well?, can’t you just come over and cook all my meals?”

There are a few companies around that do calorie controlled meals and deliver to the door, and some do help people in getting the results they need but as the most efficient method of weight loss, the “just bring me my meals all done” method isn’t necessarily the best.

In the STYLIST study published last month, researchers examined the effects of dietary counselling by registered Dietitians and the delivery of calorie controlled meals. Two hundred patients with hypertension and/or diabetes were randomly divided into two groups with or without dietary counselling, firstly consuming an ordinary diet for 4 weeks, and then consuming the delivered calorie controlled meals for a further 4 weeks. Weight, waist circumference, blood pressure and diabetes measures were taken at 0, 4 and 8 weeks.

Weight and the other measures were significantly reduced during the study periods in patients who received dietary counselling in both the ordinary diet and the delivered meals periods. They weren’t significantly reduced in patients who didn’t receive dietary counselling.

The researchers concluded that the combination of dietary counselling by Dietitians and delivery of calorie-controlled meals was effective in reducing weight, as well as blood pressure and diabetes measures, in patients with hypertension and/or diabetes mellitus.

It sounds tempting to take away the thinking part when it comes to losing weight but it seems that the delivered meals method works best when people are given support and counselling by their Dietitian. These “diets” do have some advantages but can often result in failure to change eating habits and the weight can pile back on after deliveries stop and people have to prepare their own food again.

I think the most interesting part of this is that the patients who received dietary counselling lost weight in the period where they were eating a normal diet.

Have you ever tried delivered calorie controlled meals? What did you think? Did you get good results?


Lifestyle Changes Through the Use of Delivered Meals and Dietary Counseling in a Single-Blind Study. Noda K, Zhang B, Iwata A, Nishikawa H, Ogawa M, Nomiyama T, Miura SI, Sako H, Matsuo K, Yahiro E, Yanase T, Saku K; on behalf of the STYLIST Study Investigators. Circ J. 2012 May 25;76(6):1335-1344.

Tags: Counselling, Diet Food, Dietitian, Weightloss

About the author

Anne Myers-Wright

Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Anne is a Health Professions Council (HPC) registered dietitian (RD), an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD- Australia), a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), a member of the British Dietetic Association, The Nutrition Society and of The Dietetics Association of Australia.


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