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Long-Term Body Weight Maintenance among StrongWomen-Healthy Hearts Program Participants.

  • Author(s): Seguin, Rebecca A
  • Folta, Sara C
  • Nelson, Miriam E
  • Hanson, Karla L
  • LaCroix, Andrea Z
  • et al.
Abstract

Background. The repeated loss and regain of body weight, referred to as weight cycling, may be associated with negative health complications. Given today's obesity epidemic and related interventions to address obesity, it is increasingly important to understand contexts and factors associated with weight loss maintenance. This study examined BMI among individuals who had previously participated in a 12-week, evidence-based, nationally disseminated nutrition and physical activity program designed for overweight and obese middle-aged and older women. Methods. Data were collected using follow-up surveys. Complete height and weight data were available for baseline, 12-week program completion (post-program) and follow-up (approximately 3 years later) for 154 women (response rate = 27.5%; BMI characteristics did not differ between responders and nonresponders). Results. Mean BMI decreased significantly from baseline to post-program (-0.5, P < 0.001) and post-program to follow-up (-0.7, P < 0.001). Seventy-five percent of survey respondents maintained or decreased BMI post-program to follow-up. Self-efficacy and social support for healthy eating behaviors (but not physical activity) were associated with BMI maintenance or additional weight loss. Conclusions. These findings support the durability of weight loss following participation in a relatively short-term intervention.

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