Fresh Views

Diabetes Technology and Solution-Focused Practice: Noom App

Noom messaging to support healthy thinking!

We at A Fresh POV for You hope you enjoyed summer and are now heading into fall with excitement and initiative!  As we continue our series on diabetes technology, today we’re sharing Deb’s experience with the Noom app. Both of us have used many different apps for healthy living, some of which we’ve written about in past blog posts. 

Deb started using Noom recently because of all of the great things she was reading and hearing about the psychology behind behavior change.  While our goal as diabetes care and education specialists is to incorporate behavioral techniques into practice, including solution-focused practice, it’s often challenging to have enough time to teach the skills needed to embrace the behavior change. That’s where Noom comes in. 

What’s interesting about Noom is that you answer many survey questions including history, habits and desires, then Noom crafts an ideal plan for weight loss or making healthy choices before you have to decide to commit to the cost. Noom incorporates several behavior techniques including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The overarching premise of Noom is to help people set small, achievable goals, so that as those are reached one will stay motivated, thus building  self-efficacy, which helps boost motivation.

Noom has several statistics they share regarding their success rate. We only have the reports and can’t share personal experience as we are new to this app and technique. Some insurance plans will cover the Noom program and Noom will facilitate the process.

What’s different about the Noom app is the psychology lessons each day – you choose how many minutes you want to engage, Deb’s been doing 10 minutes a day. The app encourages taking notes, writing down calls to action, setting goals and documenting them. Overall the theme of Noom is “I believe I can change my behavior”.  And it’s encouraged that the user reminds himself as time goes on.

Noom also creates a social connection. There are Noom community groups as well as a Noom coach if one chooses to engage. The language used in the app is very encouraging, person first, and a questioning approach is used.

So what does this have to do with a solution-focused approach? The psychology behind Noom assumes that the user has the power they need, but they need support and coaching to help develop positive thinking. That is a key component of a solution-focused approach – to start with the strengths of the individual and then build upon them. And as stated, they use a questioning approach, encouraging the individual to think about what might work for them as opposed to setting a strict plan.

If you’ve been reading our blog you know we’ve written about the WW app (the old Weight Watchers) and some of the positive messaging we’ve seen from that app. We would say that Noom goes one step farther in teaching the mini-lessons focused on psychology.

As with any healthy living app, the best app is often the one that resonates with you or your clients. If your clients are looking for something new, this might be an option, depending on costs.

 Please note that this blog is our personal experience and we receive no financial incentives from Noom.

We plan to continue to write about a variety of other technologies that impact and influence diabetes care and education including diabetes apps, digital health tools, diabetes devices, online peer support and online coaching. Stop back by in 2 weeks to see what’s up next

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If you are a health care professional and interested in learning more about our solution-focused practice and approach, when you subscribe to our blog, we’ll send you in return a FREE resource of 10 Solution-Focused Questions to start a solution-focused discussion with your clients. 

Deb is employed by Dexcom, but her words and opinions in this blog are her own.

Tami is employed by the University of Kentucky HealthCare Barnstable Brown DIabetes Center, but her words and opinions in this blog are her own.