Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 41, Issue 2, pp 152–159 | Cite as

The association between previous success with weight loss through dietary change and success in a lifestyle modification program

  • Stephanie G. Kerrigan
  • Margaret Clark
  • Alexandra Convertino
  • Evan M. Forman
  • Meghan L. Butryn


Prior work has yielded mixed results regarding the association between previous weight loss and success in a current weight loss attempt. The present study evaluated differences in baseline psychosocial processes, changes in these over time, and weight loss during a yearlong behavioral weight loss program between individuals who have and have not previously been successful losing weight through self-regulating dietary intake. Individuals with prior success had greater weight losses over time than those without. Differences in baseline and change over time in some facets of motivation and self-efficacy were observed, but only differences in attendance accounted for differential weight loss. Prior success with dietary self-regulation may predict better adherence to and success in behavioral weight control programs. Evaluating the type of weight control efforts that have previously helped induce weight losses may help to better match individuals to treatments likely to yield success.


Obesity Behavioral weight loss Dietary change Attendance Psychosocial predictors 



The authors acknowledge the National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases as the funding source (R01 DK092374; PI: Butryn).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Stephanie G. Kerrigan, Margaret Clark, Alexandra Convertino, Evan Forman and Meghan L. Butryn declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Human and animal rights and Informed consent

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


  1. Anderson-Bill, E. S., Winett, R. A., & Wojcik, J. R. (2011). Social cognitive determinants of nutrition and physical activity among web-health users enrolling in an online intervention: The influence of social support, self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and self-regulation. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 13, e28. doi: 10.2196/jmir.1551 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  2. Batterham, M., Tapsell, L., Charlton, K., O’Shea, J., & Thorne, R. (2017). Using data mining to predict success in a weight loss trial. Journal of Human Nutrition & Dietetics. doi: 10.1111/jhn.12448 Google Scholar
  3. Butryn, M. L., Forman, E. M., Lowe, M. R., Gorin, A. A., Zhang, F., & Schaumberg, K. (2017). Efficacy of environmental and acceptance-based enhancements to behavioral weight loss treatment: The ENACT trial. Obesity (Silver Spring), 25, 866–872. doi: 10.1002/oby.21813 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ciao, A. C., Latner, J. D., & Durso, L. E. (2012). Treatment seeking and barriers to weight loss treatments of different intensity levels among obese and overweight individuals. Eating and Weight Disorders, 17, e9–e16.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Clark, M. M., Abrams, D. B., Niaura, R. S., Eaton, C. A., & Rossi, J. S. (1991). Self-efficacy in weight management. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 59, 739–744.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Cresci, B., & Rotella, C. M. (2009). Motivational readiness to change in lifestyle modification programs. Eating and Weight Disorders, 14, e158–e162.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) Research Group. (2002). The diabetes prevention program (DPP). Diabetes Care, 25, 2165–2171.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Elobeid, M. A., Padilla, M. A., McVie, T., Thomas, O., Brock, D. W., Musser, B., et al. (2009). Missing data in randomized clinical trials for weight loss: Scope of the problem, state of the field, and performance of statistical methods. PLoS ONE, 4, e6624. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0006624 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  9. Fabricatore, A. N., Wadden, T. A., Rohay, J. M., Pillitteri, J. L., Shiffman, S., Harkins, A. M., et al. (2008). Weight loss expectations and goals in a population sample of overweight and obese US adults. Obesity (Silver Spring), 16, 2445–2450. doi: 10.1038/oby.2008.383 CrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  10. Gadbury, G. L., Coffey, C. S., & Allison, D. B. (2003). Modern statistical methods for handling missing repeated measurements in obesity trial data: Beyond LOCF. Obesity Reviews, 4, 175–184.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Guglielmo, R., Polak, R., & Sullivan, A. P. (1985). Development of self esteem as a function of familial reception. Journal of Drug Education, 15, 277–284. doi: 10.2190/XA4W-GUV3-N55A-YJ4V CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Kerrigan, S. G., Schaumberg, K., Kase, C., Gaspar, M., Forman, E., & Butryn, M. L. (2016). From last supper to self-initiated weight loss: Pretreatment weight change may be more important than previously thought. Obesity (Silver Spring), 24, 843–849. doi: 10.1002/oby.21423 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kruger, J., Galuska, D. A., Serdula, M. K., & Jones, D. A. (2004). Attempting to lose weight: Specific practices among U.S. adults. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 26, 402–406. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2004.02.001 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Latner, J. D., & Ciao, A. C. (2014). Weight-loss history as a predictor of obesity treatment outcome: Prospective, long-term results from behavioral, group self-help treatment. Journal of Health Psychology, 19, 253–261. doi: 10.1177/1359105312468191 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Levesque, C. S., Williams, G. C., Elliot, D., Pickering, M. A., Bodenhamer, B., & Finley, P. J. (2007). Validating the theoretical structure of the Treatment Self-Regulation Questionnaire (TSRQ) across three different health behaviors. Health Education Research, 22, 691–702. doi: 10.1093/her/cyl148 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Look Ahead Research Group, Wing, R. R., Bolin, P., Brancati, F. L., Bray, G. A., Clark, J. M., et al. (2013). Cardiovascular effects of intensive lifestyle intervention in type 2 diabetes. New England Journal of Medicine, 369, 145–154. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1212914 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Marchesini, G., Bellini, M., Natale, S., Belsito, C., Isacco, S., Nuccitelli, C., et al. (2003). Psychiatric distress and health-related quality of life in obesity. Diabetes, Nutrition & Metabolism, 16, 145–154.Google Scholar
  18. Marchesini, G., Cuzzolaro, M., Mannucci, E., Dalle Grave, R., Gennaro, M., Tomasi, F., et al. (2004). Weight cycling in treatment-seeking obese persons: Data from the QUOVADIS study. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, 28, 1456–1462. doi: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0802741 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Navidian, A., Abedi, M., Baghban, I., Fatehizade, M., & Poursharifi, H. (2009). Reliability and validity of the weight efficacy lifestyle questionnaire in overweight and obese individuals. International Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 3, 217–222.Google Scholar
  20. Pasman, W. J., Saris, W. H., & Westerterp-Plantenga, M. S. (1999). Predictors of weight maintenance. Obesity Research, 7, 43–50.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Preacher, K. J., & Hayes, A. F. (2004). SPSS and SAS procedures for estimating indirect effects in simple mediation models. Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, & Computers, 36, 717–731.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Teixeira, P. J., Palmeira, A. L., Branco, T. L., Martins, S. S., Minderico, C. S., Barata, J. T., et al. (2004). Who will lose weight? A reexamination of predictors of weight loss in women. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 1, 12. doi: 10.1186/1479-5868-1-12 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  23. Teixeira, P. J., Silva, M. N., Coutinho, S. R., Palmeira, A. L., Mata, J., Vieira, P. N., et al. (2010). Mediators of weight loss and weight loss maintenance in middle-aged women. Obesity (Silver Spring), 18, 725–735. doi: 10.1038/oby.2009.281 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Wadden, T. A., Butryn, M. L., & Byrne, K. J. (2004). Efficacy of lifestyle modification for long-term weight control. Obesity Research, 12, 151S–162S. doi: 10.1038/oby.2004.282 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Wadden, T. A., & Foster, G. D. (2006). Weight and lifestyle inventory (WALI). Obesity (Silver Spring), 14, 99S–118S. doi: 10.1038/oby.2006.289 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Wamsteker, E. W., Geenen, R., Iestra, J., Larsen, J. K., Zelissen, P. M., & van Staveren, W. A. (2005). Obesity-related beliefs predict weight loss after an 8-week low-calorie diet. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 105, 441–444. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2004.12.031 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Webber, K. H., Gabriele, J. M., Tate, D. F., & Dignan, M. B. (2010). The effect of a motivational intervention on weight loss is moderated by level of baseline controlled motivation. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 7, 4. doi: 10.1186/1479-5868-7-4 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  28. West, D. S., Harvey-Berino, J., Krukowski, R. A., & Skelly, J. M. (2011). Pretreatment weight change is associated with obesity treatment outcomes. Obesity (Silver Spring), 19, 1791–1795. doi: 10.1038/oby.2011.22 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephanie G. Kerrigan
    • 1
  • Margaret Clark
    • 1
  • Alexandra Convertino
    • 1
  • Evan M. Forman
    • 1
  • Meghan L. Butryn
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyDrexel UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

Personalised recommendations