Yale researcher finds pattern in maintaining weight loss

July 29, 2004

New Haven, Conn. -- Eighteen women who maintained a weight loss of 15 to 144 pounds for at least one year and as long as 27 years followed similar patterns leading to consistent behavior change, according to a study published in the Nursing Science Quarterly.

Diane Berry, a postdoctoral fellow at Yale School of Nursing, interviewed 20 women in the study. Seventeen of the women were enrolled in two popular weight loss programs.

Eighteen of the women had lost 10 percent of their body weight and maintained that weight loss for at least one year. Berry included in her study two women who were unable to maintain weight loss as contrasting cases. These two women, as well as one woman who kept the weight off, were not enrolled in a weight loss support program. Berry said she found six similar patterns among the women who were successful.

In pattern one, before losing weight, the women were self-conscious, vulnerable, and unaware of events that contributed to their weight gain. Pattern two revealed recognition of a problem, a readiness to take action, and a decision to make a change. "In the third pattern," Berry said, "women took control and actively engaged in behavior change."

In patterns four to six, the women incorporated new behaviors, used some type of support system to reinforce the behavior change, and, finally, experienced increased confidence, self-esteem, and control of their lives.

"Participants moved fluidly through one pattern to the next and many times fell back to a previous pattern before moving on," Berry said. "Once participants moved to the sixth pattern, they were able to maintain weight loss."

In addition to membership in a weight loss support program, all of the women who maintained their weight loss had incorporated exercise into their lifestyles.

"The women who maintained their weight loss were more aware of their trigger foods and portion sizes, and they all exercised regularly," Berry said. "They also recognized it is something they will have to work at for the rest of their lives."
-end-
Citation: Nursing Science Quarterly, Vol. 17: pp 242-252.

Yale University

Related Weight Loss Articles from Brightsurf:

Weight loss shouldn't be the goal of PE
For adults, the goal of exercise is often to shed some pounds, but new research from the University of Georgia suggests the objective should be different for kids.

How long should you fast for weight loss?
Two daily fasting diets, also known as time-restricted feeding diets, are effective for weight loss, according to a new study.

Green tea may help with weight loss efforts
In an analysis published in Phytotherapy Research of randomized controlled trials, individuals who consumed green tea experienced a significant decline in body weight and body mass index.

Changing weight-loss strategies, attempts
The proportion of adults who tried to lose weight in the previous year increased from 1999 to 2016 but the findings of this observational study suggest the results may have been unsatisfactory.

Quality of life changes after weight loss
Obesity increases a number of adverse health consequences including reduced health-related quality of life.

Weight loss medicines underutilized by veterans
Despite the availability of new weight management medications and several clinical guidelines recommending their use as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for obesity, a new study has found that their use is extremely low (about one percent) among eligible Veterans.

Is the most effective weight-loss strategy really that hard?
Dietary self-monitoring is the best predictor of weight-loss success. But the practice is viewed as so unpleasant and time-consuming, many would-be weight-losers won't adopt it.

Study: Faster weight loss no better than slow weight loss for health benefits
Losing weight slowly or quickly won't tip the scale in your favor when it comes to overall health, according to new research.

Mindfulness training may help support weight loss
Mindfulness training may improve the effectiveness of intensive weight management programs, according to a small study published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Does weight loss before surgery provide benefits?
For obese and overweight patients, it is common for various surgical procedures to be deferred until they have lost weight through diet and exercise.

Read More: Weight Loss News and Weight Loss Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.