Weight-Control Methods, 3-Year Weight Change, and Eating Behaviors: A Prospective Nationwide Study of Middle-Aged New Zealand Women



The effectiveness of women’s weight-control methods and the influences of dieting on eating behaviors remain unclear.


Our aim was to determine the association of various weight-control methods at baseline with weight change to 3 years, and examine the association between baseline weight-control status (trying to lose weight, trying to prevent weight gain or no weight-control attempts) and changes in intuitive eating and binge eating at 3 years.


A nationally representative sample of 1,601 New Zealand women (40 to 50 years) was recruited and completed a self-administered questionnaire at baseline regarding use of variety of weight-control methods. Information on demographic characteristics, weight, height, food habits, binge eating, and intuitive eating were collected at baseline and 3 years.

Statistical analyses

Linear and logistic regression models examined associations between both weight status and weight-control methods at baseline and weight change to 3 years; and baseline weight-control status and change in intuitive eating from baseline to 3 years and binge eating at 3 years. χ2 tests were used to cross-sectionally compare food habits across the weight status categories at both baseline and 3 years.


Trying to lose weight and the use of weight-control methods at baseline were not associated with change in body weight to 3 years. There were a few differences in the frequency of consumption of high-energy-density foods between those trying to lose or maintain weight and those not attempting weight control. Trying to lose weight at baseline was associated with a 2.0-unit (95% CI 0.7 to 3.4, P=0.003) reduction in intuitive eating scores by 3 years (potential range=21 to 105), and 224% (odds ratio=3.24; 95% CI 1.69 to 6.20; P<0.001) higher odds of binge eating at 3 years.


The apparent ineffectiveness of dieting and weight-control behaviors may reflect misconceptions about what constitutes healthy eating or energy-dense foods. Dieting may reduce women’s ability to recognize hunger and satiety cues and place women at increased risk of binge eating.

Published by: davidgerting

I'm 32, I live in Westminster Md. For the longest time I struggle to figure out what I want to do for a living. Until I realize for the last 4 or so years, everything I love doing was about health and fitness so about 2 years ago. I decided to go to school for exercise science I got my A.A degree then I processed to study for the National Academy sports medicine (NASM) exam after I pass I started my journey to try different workouts and different meal plans I even start my education trying to became a dietitian hopefully I'll be a RD in the next 2 years through out the day I strive to learn as much as I can. Now I can honestly say, I can help anyone the wants to lose weight gain muscle or just over all want to be more healthier.

Categories Body's over all health functions improvement tips and Facts, Nutrition tips & FactsLeave a comment

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