Condition category
Nutritional, Metabolic, Endocrine
Date applied
Date assigned
Last edited
Prospectively registered
Overall trial status
Recruitment status
No longer recruiting

Plain English Summary

Background and study aims
We are carrying out a study to measure the effectiveness of a service that is designed to help people maintain their weight after attending a weight loss programme. Our aim is to understand how a SMS-text messaging based weight maintenance programme to encourage self-weighing compares to a brief telephone supported programme in terms of weight change after 3 and 9 months after the end of the 12 week weight-loss programme. The study’s findings should help to improve the future design of interventions for overweight people.

Who can participate?
Participants who have completed the 12-week Lighten Up weight management programme aged over 18.

What does the study involve?
All participants eligible for the study will have attended a 12 week weight loss programme. Participants will be randomised to receive weekly text (SMS) based support encouraging weight maintenance or standard care (telephone support post weight loss intervention and information about effective weight maintenance strategies). Participants receiving text based support will be requested to send weight measurements by text. Data will be collected at 3 and 9 months.

What are the possible benefits and risks of participating?
Participants in either treatment arm will receive support to help maintain their current weight. There are no known risks in taking part in this study.

Where is this study run from?
University of Birmingham in collaboration with Birmingham and Solihull NHS Cluster.

When is the study starting and how long is it expected to run for?
Recruitment will begin in January 2013. Participants will be enrolled on the study for 9 months, and there will be a follow up period where intend to explore the attitudes of participants’ in relation to the support they received.

Who is funding the study?
Birmingham and Solihull NHS Cluster (UK)

Who is the main contact?
Mr Manbinder Sidhu

Trial website

Contact information



Primary contact

Prof Kate Jolly


Contact details

University of Birmingham
Public Health
Epidemiology and Biostatistics
School of Health and Population Sciences
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
B15 2TT
United Kingdom

Additional identifiers

EudraCT number number

Protocol/serial number

Lighten Up Plus- V1

Study information

Scientific title

Evaluation of a text supported weight maintenance programme ‘Lighten Up Plus’ following a weight reduction programme: a randomised controlled trial.


Lighten Up Plus

Study hypothesis

It is hypothesised that participants receiving text (SMS) support will maintain their weight or gain less weight compared to those receiving standard care. The null hypothesis is that there will be no difference between treatment groups.

Ethics approval

South Birmingham Research Ethics Committee, 20/11/2012, ref: 12/WM/0372

Study design

Randomised controlled trial with patients individually allocated to one of two weight maintenance programmes. Qualitative interviews will explore the experience of the intervention.

Primary study design


Secondary study design

Randomised controlled trial

Trial setting


Trial type

Quality of life

Patient information sheet

Participant information sheets disseminated in this study are available, on request, from Professor Kate Jolly,


Treatment for people who are overweight/obese


Usual care: Telephone support at end of free weight loss programme and at 3 months with ‘hints and tips’ leaflet about effective weight maintenance strategies;

Text intervention: usual care plus texts at weekly interventions. Texts will ask for the participant’s weight and will respond with one of three options:

1. Weight maintenance or weight loss from previous reported weight – congratulatory message and encouragement to keep up the good work;
2. Small gain for one or two weeks in succession – advice to be careful about diet and increase physical activity
3. Gain for three or more weeks in succession – offer of telephone support session

The initial support session will be with a member of the call centre staff who will remind them about their strategies for weight loss. If they continue to gain weight they can then be referred on to a health trainer.

Intervention type



Not Applicable

Drug names

Primary outcome measures

Difference between baseline weight and independently measured weight at nine months following randomisation.

Secondary outcome measures

1. Self-reported weight loss at 3 months following randomisation, which will be collected by the Lighten Up call centre by telephone (or questionnaire for people not-contactable by phone)
2. BMI at 9 months and percentage of people achieving 5% loss of body weight from the start of their Lighten Up programme.

Overall trial start date


Overall trial end date


Reason abandoned


Participant inclusion criteria

1. Aged ≥18
2. People who have a final (week 12) weight recorded or attended the Lighten Up weight management service for a minimum of 9 sessions and have had a weight measured within the past 2 weeks
3. Has access to scales to weigh self
4. Owns a phone (mobile or land-line).

Participant type


Age group




Target number of participants

522 participants

Participant exclusion criteria

1. Unable to understand English
2. Women who are known to be pregnant
3. People who attended the My Choice pharmacy programme
4. Not willing to be randomised
5. People who have dropped out of the Lighten Up service prior to week 9

Recruitment start date


Recruitment end date



Countries of recruitment

United Kingdom

Trial participating centre

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT
United Kingdom

Sponsor information


Birmingham and Solihull NHS Cluster (UK)

Sponsor details

Bartholomew House
142 Hagley Road
B16 9PA
United Kingdom

Sponsor type

Hospital/treatment centre



Funder type

Hospital/treatment centre

Funder name

Birmingham and Solihull NHS Cluster (UK)

Alternative name(s)

Funding Body Type

Funding Body Subtype


Results and Publications

Publication and dissemination plan

Not provided at time of registration

Intention to publish date

Participant level data

Not provided at time of registration

Results - basic reporting

Publication summary

2016 results in:

Publication citations

Additional files

Editorial Notes

15/02/2016: Publication reference added.