Weight Loss and Weight Loss Maintenance Have Low Overlap

Consistent exercise, low-fat diet help in maintaining weight loss but not in losing weight

MONDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- There is little overlap between the practices used to lose weight and those used to maintain weight loss, according to a study published online July 5 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Christopher N. Sciamanna, M.D., M.P.H., of the Penn State Hershey Medical Center, and colleagues evaluated data from a randomly selected sample of 1,165 U.S. adults to compare the practices used to lose weight (≥10 percent lost in the past year) with those used to maintain weight loss (≥10 percent lost and maintained for at least one year).

The investigators found that, out of a total of 36 weight control practices, only eight (22 percent) were found to be associated with both weight loss and weight loss maintenance. There was poor agreement overall (kappa = 0.22) between the practices correlated with weight loss and weight loss maintenance. Reports of weight loss maintenance, but not weight loss were more likely in those participants with a consistent exercise routine or intake of low-fat sources of proteins (1.97 and 1.76 times, respectively). Weight loss, but not weight loss maintenance was more likely in those who reported doing different kinds of exercises and planning meals ahead of time (2.56 and 1.68 times, respectively).

"Successful weight loss and weight loss maintenance may require two different sets of practices," the authors write.

The study was partially funded by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Pittsburgh.

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