Send to

Choose Destination
Transl J Am Coll Sports Med. 2017;2(18):114-121. Epub 2017 Sep 15.

Diet and Physical Activity Behaviors in Primary Care Patients with Recent Intentional Weight Loss.

Author information

University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA.
University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT.



Lifestyle habits of primary care patients with recent, intentional weight loss are unclear and need to be better understood to aid in translational health promotion efforts. We aimed to characterize diet and exercise habits in primary care patients with recent, intentional weight loss, comparing those with greater (≥10%) vs. lesser (5 to <10%) weight loss.


This was a cross-sectional analysis of baseline data from a randomized trial comparing weight loss maintenance interventions. The study included primary care patients, 18-75 years old, with ≥5% intentional weight loss via lifestyle change in the past 2 years. Participants (74% female, 87% white) had mean age 53 (12) years, body mass index 30.4 (5.9) kg/m2, and recent weight loss of 11 (8)%. Dietary habits were measured by the Diet Habits Survey. Physical activity and sedentary behavior were measured by self-report and objectively by pedometer.


On average, participants reported high fruits and vegetables intake (5 servings/day), and low intake of fried foods (1 serving/week), desserts (1 serving/week) and sugar-sweetened beverages (0 servings/week). Those with greater vs. lesser weight loss had higher intake of fruits and vegetables (p=0.037) and low fat foods or recipes (p=0.019). Average self-reported moderate-vigorous physical activity was 319 (281) minutes/week, with significant differences between greater (374 (328) minutes/week) vs. lesser (276 (230) minutes/week) weight loss groups (p=0.017). By pedometer, 30% had ≥7,500 steps/day; the proportion was higher in greater (43%) vs. lesser (19%) weight loss groups (p=0.005).


For weight loss, clinical patients typically employ simple strategies such as 5+ fruits and vegetables per day, fried foods and desserts ≤1 per week, elimination of sugary drinks, choosing low fat foods/recipes, and physical activity 45-60 min/day.


diet; physical activity; primary care; sedentary behavior; weight loss


Conflict of interest statement

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST Dr. Barone Gibbs received grant funding to her institution from Humanscale to study the health effects of using a sit-stand desk. Drs. Conroy, Hess, and McTigue received royalties paid to the University of Pittsburgh Division of General Internal Medicine from Canary Health for assisting in the development of an online lifestyle program. The other authors report no conflicts of interest. Results of this study do not constitute endorsement of the American College of Sports Medicine.

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center