How can I take part?

We are now open for volunteers who have Long COVID symptoms and who are overweight (i.e. BMI >27kg/m² (>25kg/m² for South Asian populations)).

If you are interested in taking part or would like further information, please email our research team at

Being a participant on the ReDIRECT study means you will receive 12 months free treatment on the Counterweight-Plus/DiRECT diet weight management programme. This weight management programme is delivered by Counterweight Ltd using an online platform. Participants will receive formula diet products at their home, and will be allocated a specialist dietitian, who will provide personal support for 12 months by telephone. There is no need to travel to a research centre or a hospital to take part.

If you decide to take part in the study and meet the eligibility criteria, your GP will be informed about your participation, and that some people may require changes to medications for diabetes or high blood pressure (these medicines can usually be safely stopped).

You will be provided with a Total Diet Replacement Plan of your choice of porridge, soups and shakes for 12 weeks, with the aim of achieving your maximum potential weight loss. The porridge, soups and shakes are nutritionally complete, so safe, and will be provided for you free of charge as part of the study. A weight loss of 15-20 kg (2-3 stones) is achieved with full diet adherence. After 12 weeks, you will begin to reintroduce normal foods into your diet with ongoing support from your dietitian. You will also receive a set of digital scales and a digital blood pressure monitor to help you record your weight and blood pressure in your home.

This study is a randomised controlled trial. This means that you will be randomly allocated (by a computer programme) to one of two groups. Approximately 100 participants will start the programme following an initial telephone appointment with our study researchers. Another 100 participants will be offered the same programme, but after a 6-month delay. All participants in the study will receive the same treatment on the diet weight management programme; the only difference will be when you start your treatment.

The aim is to support our participants to lose weight and maintain this weight loss, and to assess whether supported weight loss makes any difference to their symptoms of Long COVID.

The study is being funded by the UK National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) and sponsored by NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.



This section is for General Practitioners only:
If you are interested in signposting this study to your patients, please contact Yvonne McIlvenna from the Primary Care Research Network: