Location: Healthy Body Weight ResearchTitle: Identification of barriers to adherence to a weight loss diet in women using the nominal group technique
|De Leon, Angela|
Submitted to: Obesity
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/3/2020
Publication Date: 12/4/2020
Citation: De Leon, A., Roemmich, J.N., Casperson, S.L. 2020. Identification of barriers to adherence to a weight loss diet in women using the nominal group technique. Obesity. 12:3750. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12123750.
Interpretive Summary: It is very common for women to engage in some type of weight loss diet. However, these efforts are difficult to sustain for long-term weight control. Using a series of small group sessions, we identified key factors that make sticking to a weight loss diet difficult for women with overweight or obesity. Results revealed both individual-level (internal) and environmental-level (external) challenges to remaining on a weight loss diet. The most prominent internal challenges included knowing when to stop eating, being able to control cravings and emotional eating, and sustaining healthy eating changes. The most prominent external challenges included going to social events that are centered around food and drink, eating out, and busy schedules. These findings highlight the factors women find most challenging in their efforts to stay “on track” with their weight loss goals. These results provide direction for planning and implementing successful behavioral weight-loss interventions in women.
Technical Abstract: Objectives: To identify the key factors that make adhering to a weight loss diet difficult for women with overweight or obesity. Elucidating these factors is paramount to improving long-term success of weight-loss interventions. Methods: A series of nominal group technique (NGT) sessions was conducted aimed at identifying perceived barriers to adherence to a weight loss diet in 33 healthy women aged 20-44 years, body mass index (BMI) 28-45 kg/m2, who were participating in a weight loss study. Results: Both individual-level and environmental-level factors emerged as major themes. The most important individual-level barriers were knowledge, cravings, emotions, habits, impatience, and willpower. Specifically, knowing when to stop eating, stress eating, and the difficulty of sustaining lifestyle changes were perceived as major obstacles. The most important environmental-level barriers included family/social, time constraints, eating out, food being present, and cost. Of the environmental-level barriers, events that bring people together, especially those centered around food and drink, and busy schedules were perceived as particularly challenging to women’s efforts to stay on track with their weight loss efforts. Conclusions: The intricate interplay between individual-level and environmental-level factors reported here can be used to inform the planning and implementation of successful behavioral weight loss interventions in women.