Psychology Faculty Publications


Weight Bias and Weight Loss Treatment Outcomes in Treatment-Seeking Adults

Document Type



BACKGROUND: Few studies have explored the relationship between weight bias and weight loss treatment outcomes.

PURPOSE: This investigation examined the relationship between implicit and explicit weight bias and (a) program attrition, (b) weight loss, (c) self-monitoring adherence, (d) daily exercise levels and overall caloric expenditure, (e) daily caloric intake, and (f) daily caloric deficit among overweight/obese treatment-seeking adults.

METHODS: Forty-six overweight/obese adults (body mass index > or = 27 kg/m(2)) participating in an 18-week, stepped-care, behavioral weight loss program completed implicit and explicit measures of weight bias. Participants were instructed to self-monitor and electronically report daily energy intake, exercise, and energy expenditure.

RESULTS: Greater weight bias was associated with inconsistent self-monitoring, greater caloric intake, lower energy expenditure and exercise, creation of a smaller caloric deficit, higher program attrition, as well as less weight loss during the self-help phase of the stepped-care treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Weight bias may interfere with overweight/obese treatment-seeking adults' ability to achieve optimal health.

Publisher's Statement

Availability via databases maintained by the United States National Library of Medicine.

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Publication Title

Annals of Behavioral Medicine