Statewide weight loss competitions appear to be a potentially successful weapon in the battle against obesity. These programs can produce weight loss in large numbers of people at minimal cost, according to a new study from The Miriam Hospital and Brown University.

Rena Wing,professor of psychiatry and human behavior at the Waren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and her colleagues came to their conclusions after evaluating Shape Up Rhode Island 2007, a statewide Internet-based weight loss competition conceived by Rajiv Kumar, a study co-author and a medical student at the Alpert Medical School.

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