Traditional weight loss interventions do not change behaviour

Traditional weight loss interventions do not change behaviour

Weight loss is the single most effective dietary therapy for improving outcomes in the 90% of people with type 2 diabetes as well as many people with type 1 diabetes who are overweight or obese, claimed Pam Dyson, Dietitian in Oxford.


However, successful weight loss is one of the most challenging lifestyle interventions for people with diabetes. There is no doubt that traditional weight loss strategies, concentrating on increasing knowledge and advice giving, are ineffective at promoting behaviour change.

BBC study into different weight loss programmes

A study conducted recently by the BBC involved 300 obese volunteers who did not have diabetes. They were divided into groups who undertook various forms of weight loss programmes: Atkins diet; Weight Watchers; Slim-Fast; Rosemary Conley diet; and a control group who underwent no intervention at all.

A 6-month follow-up revealed no difference between the groups. An average weight reduction of 5.5 kg was accompanied by huge individual variations varying from 28 kg loss to a 6.5 kg gain. What the study showed was that it does not matter what you do as long as you do it!

It is vital that the patient is allowed to follow their own agenda and choose a programme that suits them. This abandons the concept that there is an ideal method for weight loss and that this applies to all individuals regardless of circumstance.

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