Naturalistic weight-reduction efforts prospectively predict growth in relative weight and onset of obesity among female adolescents

J Consult Clin Psychol. 1999 Dec;67(6):967-74. doi: 10.1037//0022-006x.67.6.967.


This study examined the prospective relations of naturalistic weight-reduction efforts to growth in relative weight and onset of obesity with data from a community study of female adolescents (N = 692). Initial self-labeled dieting, appetite suppressant/laxative use, incidental exercise, vomiting for weight-control purposes, and binge eating predicted elevated growth in relative weight over the 4-year period. Dietary restraint, self-labeled dieting, exercise for weight-control purposes, and appetite suppressant/laxative use predicted an increased risk for obesity onset. Data imply that the weight-reduction efforts reported by adolescents are more likely to result in weight gain than in weight loss and suggest the need to educate youth on more effective weight-control strategies.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior / psychology
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight*
  • Community Mental Health Services
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Obesity / diagnosis*
  • Obesity / psychology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Psychology, Adolescent
  • Weight Loss*