Patients who struggle with weight loss or exercise goals find success with the Healthier You program

March is a time of new beginnings, the end of winter, and the official start of spring. How fitting, then, that a season of fresh starts is also National Nutrition Month—a time to focus on our healthy eating and good nutrition habits and make them sustainable for the year ahead.

If only it were so easy. “The truth is, it’s difficult to change a lifestyle built over years, and many people get overwhelmed by long-terms goals and don’t know where to start,” says Lisa-Beth Doyle, MS, RD, LDN at Mass General Brigham Health Plan.

This is where the Healthier You program, a one-year diet and exercise program that offers personalized health coaching via phone and text, begins its important work. The program helps members of Mass General Brigham Health Plan who are at risk of heart disease or diabetes to take small, actionable steps to meet big goals. Lessons come in two-week increments and change biweekly to keep the curriculum fresh.

Lisa Correa, Health Coach of our Healthier You program says, “It works so well because we meet a person where they’re at. We learn about their cultural influences, lifestyle, what’s important to them, what are their physical and mental aptitudes and limitations. The key to the program’s success is that it focuses on progress, not perfection.”

She continues, “Instead of honing in on big, long-term goals, we start with, ‘What can you do in the next two weeks that can build toward your goal?’ The lessons become real when there is a personal connection to them.”

The Healthier You program at a glance:

  • Members can refer themselves or be referred by a care manager.
  • There’s no cost to participate.
  • Participants engage virtually with a health coach every other week.
  • Goals are to lose 5-7% of body weight and add 150 minutes of physical activity weekly.

“The program typically starts to click when participants meet a small goal that they themselves have set. It’s usually when they start to feel a change in their body that they really start to get into their progress,” says Correa.

Lisa-Beth Doyle adds, “A lot of the program’s members have a history of frustrating weight fluctuations or fad fitness journeys. In some cases, there’s a long list of incorrect assumptions about nutrition. The accessible curriculum and the 1:1 coaching element are so important.”

What makes the program work so well for so many?

“The truth is,” says Doyle, “When someone is diagnosed with diabetes or high blood pressure or high cholesterol, and then is told, ‘your health is at risk, you need to change your lifestyle.’ That message is so overwhelming. The Healthier You program breaks it down into a much more personal journey. For those struggling with diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure, Healthier You provides ways to build a healthier future one step at a time.”

For those looking to learn more or participate, email us at or contact Health Coach Lisa Perea by phone at 857-282-3149. Please provide your name and the best way to reach you.

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