Eating-Related and Psychological Outcomes of Health at Every Size Intervention in Health and Social Services Centers Across the Province of Québec

Am J Health Promot. 2019 Feb;33(2):248-258. doi: 10.1177/0890117118786326. Epub 2018 Jul 9.


Purpose: To report the outcomes of a Health at Every Size (HAES) intervention in a real-world setting.

Design: Quasi-experimental design evaluating eating behaviors and psychological factors.

Setting: The HAES intervention is offered in Health and Social Services Centers in Québec (Canada).

Participants: For this study, 216 women (body mass index [BMI]: 35.76 [6.80] kg/m2) who participated to the HAES intervention were compared to 110 women (BMI: 34.56 [7.30] kg/m2) from a comparison group.

Intervention: The HAES intervention is composed of 14 weekly meetings provided by health professionals. It focuses on healthy lifestyle, self-acceptance, and intuitive eating.

Measures: Eating behaviors (ie, flexible restraint, rigid restraint, disinhibition, susceptibility to hunger, intuitive eating, and obsessive-compulsive eating) and psychological correlates (ie, body esteem, self-esteem, and depression) were assessed using validated questionnaires at baseline, postintervention, and 1-year follow-up.

Analysis: Group, time, and interaction effects analyzed with mixed models.

Results: Significant group by time interactions were found for flexible restraint ( P = .0400), disinhibition ( P < .0001), susceptibility to hunger ( P < .0001), intuitive eating ( P < .0001), obsessive-compulsive eating ( P < .0001), body-esteem ( P < .0001), depression ( P = .0057), and self-esteem ( P < .0001), where women in the HAES group showed greater improvements than women in the comparison group at short and/or long term.

Conclusion: The evaluation of this HAES intervention in a real-life context showed its effectiveness in improving eating-, weight-, and psychological-related variables among women struggling with weight and body image.

Keywords: body esteem; cognitive restraint; eating behavior; health at every size; intuitive eating; self-esteem.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Feeding Behavior / psychology*
  • Female
  • Group Processes
  • Health Promotion / organization & administration*
  • Healthy Lifestyle
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / psychology
  • Obesity / therapy
  • Overweight / psychology*
  • Overweight / therapy*
  • Quebec
  • Self Concept
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult