Beneficial effect of personalized lifestyle advice compared to generic advice on wellbeing among Dutch seniors – An explorative study

Esmée L. Doets, Iris M. de Hoogh*, Nancy Holthuysen, Suzan Wopereis, Muriel C.D. Verain, Jos van den Puttelaar, Koen Hogenelst, André Boorsma, Emily P. Bouwman, Marielle Timmer, Wilrike J. Pasman, Marjan van Erk, Machiel J. Reinders

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this explorative study is to evaluate whether personalized compared to generic lifestyle advice improves wellbeing in a senior population. We conducted a nine-week single-blind randomized controlled trial including 59 participants (age 67.7 ± 4.8 years) from Wageningen and its surrounding areas in the Netherlands. Three times during the intervention period, participants received either personalized advice (PA), or generic advice (GA) to improve lifestyle behavior. Personalization was based on metabolic health measures and dietary intake resulting in an advice that highlighted food groups and physical activity types for which behavior change was most urgent. Before and after the intervention period self-perceived health was evaluated as parameter of wellbeing using a self-perceived health score (single-item) and two questionnaires (Vita-16 and Short Form-12). Additionally, anthropometry and physical functioning (short physical performance battery, SPPB) were assessed. Overall scores for self-perceived health did not change over time in any group. Resilience and motivation (Vita-16) slightly improved only in the PA group, whilst mental health (SF-12) and energy (Vita-16) showed slight improvement only in the GA group. SPPB scores improved over time in both the PA and GA group. PA participants also showed a reduction in body fat percentage and hip circumference, whereas these parameters increased in the GA group Our findings suggest that although no clear effects on wellbeing were found, still, at least on the short term, personalized advice may evoke health benefits in a population of seniors as compared to generic advice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112642
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2019


  • Lifestyle behavior
  • Muscle health
  • Older adults
  • Personalized nutrition
  • Web-based feedback
  • Wellbeing

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