Response Versus Nonresponse to Self-Regulatory Treatment Targets Is Not Discriminated by Personal Characteristics but Predicts Physical Activity, Eating Behavior, and Weight Changes in Women With Obesity

James J. Annesi, Kennesaw State University


Background Results of behavioral weight-loss treatments vary widely, with mostly unsuccessful outcomes beyond the short term. Women with obesity participating in a new cognitive-behavioral weight-loss treatment were assessed on their responses to psychological targets. Methods Groups of responders (n = 43) and nonresponders (n = 48) were established post hoc. Results Age, race/ethnicity, education, income, body composition, physical activity, and eating behaviors at baseline were not discriminated between responders and nonresponders. Over both 6 and 24 months, responders improved significantly more in physical activity and fruit/vegetable consumption but not sweets intake. Weight loss over 6 and 24 months was significantly greater for the responder group at 8.1% and 8.6% versus nonresponders at 4.7% and 3.8%, respectively. Self-regulation change significantly predicted all behavioral changes, with mood change improving the predictive strength for only sweets intake. Discussion Although further research is required to determine the etiology of, and to maximize, positive responses, findings suggested prospects for treatment improvements.