Patterns of eating and movement that best maintain reduction in overweight

David Booth, AJ Blair, VJ Lewis, Seol Baek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)


Two studies of the influences of specific patterns of eating and exercising behaviour on body weight in English Midlands women were re-analysed using correlations as the measure of effect size. As predicted from computational modelling of hunger-sating mechanisms, avoiding energy-containing drinks and foods at the ends of and between meals was the behaviour most influencing year-long weight loss. However, although eating between meals is often called snacking, the term 'snack' appeared to be too ambiguous in this culture for its use in helping efforts to control weight. Avoidance of particular sorts of fat-rich foods was also associated with longer-term weight loss. Attempts at severe restriction of intake at mealtimes were associated with weight loss during a period of intensive dieting, but did not contribute to maintenance of that weight reduction. Using diet formulae to attain rapid weight loss was associated with significant weight gain over a year. These results support the suggestion that the first line of defence against weight gain is avoiding all sources of energy during drink breaks, with personally relevant advice on lower fat versions of particular foods also being important. Continued neglect of the behaviour-specific correlational approach to gaining evidence for less fattening habits does nothing to slow the rise in obesity. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277- 283
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • energy-free drink breaks
  • diet formulae
  • reduced-fat foods
  • weight control
  • fasting


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