Behavioral Weight Loss: A Promising Treatment for Obesity in Adults with HIV

  • Emily PanzaEmail author
  • Edward J. Wing
  • Rena Wing
Substantive Review


Obesity and chronic disease are growing problems among people living with HIV (PLWH) across the globe. While a variety of treatments have been developed to address cardiovascular and metabolic disease among PLWH, few treatments have focused on helping PLWH and obesity lose weight. In the general population, behavioral weight loss interventions (i.e., diet, physical activity, and behavior therapy) are the first-line treatment for adults for whom weight loss is recommended. However, little research has tested whether the benefits of these programs translate to PLWH. This paper highlights the key components of behavioral weight loss programs, their outcomes in the general population and in the few studies of PLWH, and suggestions for tailoring these programs for PLWH. Behavioral weight loss programs are a strong potential treatment for reducing the burden of obesity among PLWH and merit future research attention.


Diet Physical activity Weight loss programs Cardiovascular disease HIV 



This work was supported by an institutional training Grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute [T32HL076134-04].

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Weight Control and Diabetes Research CenterThe Miriam HospitalProvidenceUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Human BehaviorAlpert Medical School of Brown UniversityProvidenceUSA
  3. 3.Department of MedicineAlpert Medical School of Brown UniversityProvidenceUSA
  4. 4.The Miriam Hospital Immunology CenterProvidenceUSA

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