Is frequent self-weighing associated with poorer body satisfaction? Findings from a phone-based weight loss trial
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OBJECTIVE: To examine the effect of self-weighing frequency on weight change and body satisfaction. DESIGN: Observational study based on findings from a 6-month randomized controlled telephone-based weight loss trial. Data collected at baseline and 6 months. SETTING: Metropolitan community-based sample. PARTICIPANTS: Sixty-three obese adults. Mean age 49.5 years, 82% percent white, and 79% female. Mean body mass index at baseline was 34.2 kg/m(2). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Change in weight and body satisfaction. ANALYSIS: General linear model regression was used to assess the effect of self-weighing on outcomes of interest. Statistical significance was set at alpha level .05. Treatment group and baseline values of dependent variables included as covariates in all analyses. RESULTS: Participants who increased their frequency of self-weighing over the 6-month period demonstrated significantly better weight loss outcomes than those who maintained or decreased their frequency of self-weighing (-6.8 kg vs -3.1 kg, F = 8.59, P = .006). There were no significant associations between self-weighing frequency and body satisfaction at 6 months (F = 0.55, P = .58). CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: These findings support frequent self-weighing for weight control. There appears to be little or no effect of self-weighing on body satisfaction. Future research should replicate these findings across a larger, more diverse population of overweight adults.
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