Four-year weight losses in the look AHEAD study: Factors associated with long-term success

Academic Article


  • This report provides a further analysis of the year 4 weight losses in the Look AHEAD (Action for Health in Diabetes) study and identifies factors associated with long-term success. A total of 5,145 overweight/obese men and women with type 2 diabetes were randomly assigned to an intensive lifestyle intervention (ILI) or a usual care group, referred to as Diabetes Support and Education (DSE). ILI participants were provided approximately weekly group or individual treatment in year 1; continued but less frequent contact was provided in years 2-4. DSE participants received three group educational sessions in all years. As reported previously, at year 4, ILI participants lost an average of 4.7% of initial weight, compared with 1.1% for DSE (P 0.0001). More ILI than DSE participants lost 5% (46% vs. 25%, P 0.0001) and 10% (23% vs. 10%, P 0.0001) of initial weight. Within the ILI, achievement of both the 5% and 10% categorical weight losses at year 4 was strongly related to meeting these goals at year 1. A total of 887 participants in ILI lost 10% at year 1, of whom 374 (42.2%) achieved this loss at year 4. Participants who maintained the loss, compared with those who did not, attended more treatment sessions and reported more favorable physical activity and food intake at year 4. These results provide critical evidence that a comprehensive lifestyle intervention can induce clinically significant weight loss (i.e., 5%) in overweight/obese participants with type 2 diabetes and maintain this loss in more than 45% of patients at 4 years. © 2011 The Obesity Society.
  • Published In

  • Obesity  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Wadden TA; Neiberg RH; Wing RR; Clark JM; Delahanty LM; Hill JO; Krakoff J; Otto A; Ryan DH; Vitolins MZ
  • Start Page

  • 1987
  • End Page

  • 1998
  • Volume

  • 19
  • Issue

  • 10