(HealthDay News) – Certain baseline characteristics better predict successful weight loss with the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) lifestyle intervention, according to a study published in the January issue of Diabetes Care.

Linda M. Delahanty, RD, from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, and colleagues analyzed survey results from a sample of the DPP participants (274 participants; 25%) to determine pretreatment characteristics and changes in psychological and behavioral factors that predict weight outcomes. Weight history and psychological and behavioral factors were assessed at baseline and six months after completion of the 16-session core curriculum.

The researchers found that 40.5% had achieved the DPP 7% weight loss goal. Older age, race, older age when first overweight, fewer self-implemented weight loss attempts, greater exercise self-efficacy, greater dietary restraint, fewer fat-related dietary behaviors, and more sedentary activity level (as measured at baseline) were independent predictors of successful end-of-study weight loss with the DPP lifestyle intervention. Many psychological and behavioral targets significantly improved with the DPP core curriculum. Better long-term weight loss was predicted by changes in low-fat diet self-efficacy and dietary restraint skills.

“Health care providers who translate the DPP lifestyle intervention should be aware of pretreatment characteristics that may hamper or enhance weight loss, consider prioritizing strategies to improve low-fat diet self-efficacy and dietary restraint skills, and examine whether taking these actions improves weight loss outcomes,” the authors write.

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