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Patient Educ Couns. 2005 Jan;56(1):55-61.

Locus of control and weight reduction.

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Department of Medicine, Obesity Unit, Huddinge University Hospital, Karolinska Institute, Norrtulls Sjukhus, Norrtullsgatan 14, 113 45 Stockholm, Sweden.


The objective of this study was to determine if locus of control orientation is predictive for weight loss among participants in a behaviour modification weight reduction programme. The subjects completed a locus of control questionnaire consisting of 40 questions before starting the programme and again after 1 year. Forty-one participants started the programme, 28 remained after 1 year. Their weight loss was significant (P < 0.001) and associated with an internal locus of control orientation (P < 0.05). The findings suggest that different weight reduction activities could be offered depending on the person's locus of control orientation. Participants with an internal orientation could be offered a standard weight reduction programme. Others, with a more external locus of control orientation, could be offered an adapted programme, which also focused on and encouraged the participants' internal orientation.

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