The National Weight Control Registry: is it useful in helping deal with our obesity epidemic?

J Nutr Educ Behav. 2005 Jul-Aug;37(4):206-10. doi: 10.1016/s1499-4046(06)60248-0.


The National Weight Control Registry (NWCR) consists of over 4800 individuals who have been successful in long-term weight loss maintenance. The purpose of establishing the NWCR was to identify the common characteristics of those who succeed in long-term weight loss maintenance. We found very little similarity in how these individuals lost weight but some common behaviors in how they are keeping their weight off. To maintain their weight loss NWCR participants report eating a relatively low-fat diet, eating breakfast almost every day, weighing themselves regularly, and engaging in high levels (about 1 hour/day) of physical activity. Because this is not a random sample of those who attempt weight loss, the results have limited generalizability to the entire population of overweight and obese individuals. The value of this project lies in identifying potential strategies that may help others be more successful in keeping weight off.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Diet, Reducing
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Obesity / diet therapy
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Obesity / prevention & control*
  • Registries
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Dietary Fats