STRIDE: A randomized trial of a lifestyle intervention to promote weight loss among individuals taking antipsychotic medications

Bobbi Jo H. Yarborough, Michael C. Leo, Scott Stumbo, Nancy A. Perrin, Carla A. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Background: Individuals diagnosed with serious mental illnesses are at increased risk of obesity- and cardiovascular-related morbidity and early mortality. Lifestyle interventions aimed at weight loss, even those adapted to suit the needs of this particular subgroup, have rarely produced clinically meaningful reductions in weight. Methods/design: The STRIDE study is a multi-site, parallel, two-arm randomized controlled translational trial. Participants were recruited from community mental health clinics and an integrated not-for-profit health system. Participants were randomized either to usual care or to a 12-month intervention that consisted of: 1) weekly group participation for six months covering topics on nutrition, physical activity and lifestyle changes; 2) monthly group participation for an additional six month maintenance period; and 3) individual monthly contacts from intervention group facilitators during the second six month phase. All participants are assessed at baseline, 6, 12, and 24 months post-enrollment. Process and implementation evaluations are included and the study design includes a cost-utility analysis. Participants include 200 individuals with serious mental illness with an average age of 47.1 years, a mean body-mass index of 38.3 kg/m2 and taking an average of 3.2 psychiatric medications at baseline. Baseline physiological measures included mean blood pressure (SBP/DBP) measurements of 119.2 (SD = 14.7)/79.4 (SD = 10.1); 35% reported a hypertension diagnosis and 11% took antihypertensive medications. Average lipid levels (mg/dL) were: a) triglycerides 188.0 (SD = 138.6), ranged from 43 to 1145; b) LDL 101.4 (SD = 32.9) and ranged from 17 to 185; c) HDL 45.8 (SD = 12.7) and ranged from 22 to 89; and d) total cholesterol 181.6 (SD = 39.7) and ranged from 50 to 324. Average fasting glucose levels were 108.9 (SD = 32.5) and ranged from 24 to 289. Average fasting insulin levels were 13.0 (SD=11.9) and ranged from 2 to 99.Discussion: The STRIDE study is based on a modified version of the PREMIER comprehensive lifestyle intervention, DASH diet arm. STRIDE has successfully enrolled 200 individuals with serious mental illness in community-based settings. Baseline characteristics present a population at high risk for obesity-related negative health outcomes and demonstrate the need for evidence-based interventions to reduce these risks. Trial registration: Clinical NCT00790517.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number238
JournalBMC psychiatry
StatePublished - Sep 28 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Antipsychotic medications
  • Blood pressure
  • Diabetes risk
  • Lifestyle change
  • Lipids
  • Obesity
  • Physical activity
  • Serious mental illness
  • Weight loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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