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Comparative Study
, 57 (1), 105-17

Factors Differentiating Women and Men Who Successfully Maintain Weight Loss From Women and Men Who Do Not

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Comparative Study

Factors Differentiating Women and Men Who Successfully Maintain Weight Loss From Women and Men Who Do Not

F A Dohm et al. J Clin Psychol.

Abstract

The current study explored the relative contribution of exercise, coping responses, cognitive attributions, and emotional experiences to successful weight-loss maintenance in men and women. The data were collected via a large community-based survey on dieting and weight loss commissioned by Consumer Union. Men and women who met our criteria for successful (n = 277 men, n = 329 women) and unsuccessful (n = 277 men, n = 329 women) weight-loss maintenance were included in the sample. Successful weight-loss maintainers (Maintainers) reported having lost at least 10% of their highest adult weight and having maintained that weight loss for at least the three years immediately prior to the survey. Unsuccessful weight-loss maintainers (Regainers) reported not ever having been able to maintain a significant weight loss and having lost and regained a minimum of 10 to 19 pounds at least once. In response to a dietary lapse, Maintainers, as compared with Regainers, reported being more likely to use direct coping and less likely to seek help. The results imply that the most useful variables for differentiating between successful and unsuccessful weight-loss maintainers may involve how they respond to a dietary lapse.

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