Researchers at the University of British Columbia, in collaboration with researchers at the University of Leeds and the University of North Carolina, are seeking men and women age 18-75 who are overweight and interested in participating in a weight loss research study.


About the research study

  • A total of 360 participants will be enrolled in Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States
  • The study will last approximately 13 months (for each participant) and the weight loss programs being studied are free
  • The study is investigating the effectiveness of a commercial weight loss program that is widely available in the community (Weight Watcher Freestyle®)
  • Eligible participants who enroll will be randomly assigned to follow the Weight Watchers program or to receive resources to help them follow a 'do-it-yourself' (DIY) approach to weight loss based on personal preferences and lifestyle over a 12 month period
  • Both groups will be asked to make changes to their diet, physical activity and lifestyle in order to lose weight
  • Enrolled participants will be asked to attend 4 appointments at the research center.  During 3 of these, you will be asked  to complete surveys and physical measurements (at the beginning, after 3 months and after 12 months)
  • At the end of the study, each group will be offered the resources provided to the other group (12 months of Weight Watchers or DIY resources)
  • Participants will receive up to $175 for completing the 3 measurement visits


You must meet all eligibility criteria to participate, including:

  • 18 - 75 years old
  • Body Mass Index (BMI)  is 25 - 45 kg/m2  (Check your BMI)
  • You have a smartphone and can download and use an app on it
  • If you are female, you are not pregnant, planning to become pregnant in the next 12 months, or less than 6 months post-partum
  • You live or work within 30 miles of the study center (UBC-Vancouver)
  • You are able to attend weekly Weight Watchers meetings if you are assigned to that study group
  • You do not have any health history or conditions that would make participating in this study unsafe or unreasonable (this will be assessed by completing the screening questionnaires)

Due to a very high response rate, we are no longer accepting new online screeners.  If you have already submitted a screening survey, please allow 7-10 business days for a phone or email response.  Thank you.