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Eat Weight Disord. 2019 Aug 31. doi: 10.1007/s40519-019-00763-z. [Epub ahead of print]

What do young women with obesity want from a weight management program?

Author information

1
Charles Perkins Centre, The University of Sydney, Building D17 John Hopkins Drive, Camperdown, NSW, 2006, Australia. natalie.crino@sydney.edu.au.
2
Charles Perkins Centre, The University of Sydney, Building D17 John Hopkins Drive, Camperdown, NSW, 2006, Australia.
3
Exercise and Sports Science, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney, Lidcombe, NSW, 1825, Australia.
4
Faculty of Science, University of Sydney, Camperdown, NSW, 2006, Australia.
5
School of Exercise Science, Sport and Health, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, NSW, 2795, Australia.
6
The Children's Hospital at Westmead Clinical School, University of Sydney, Westmead, NSW, 2145, Australia.
7
Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney, Lidcombe, NSW, 1825, Australia.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Early adulthood is a high-risk time for weight gain; however, young women with obesity are difficult to recruit to weight management programs. To encourage participation and retention, it is important to understand what young women want from these programs. The purpose of the study was to explore participants' perspectives on the features of an ideal weight management program.

METHODS:

Semi-structured interview schedules were used to elicit information from eight focus groups [27 women; mean age of 29.1 (± 5.1) years, mean body mass index (BMI; kg/m2) of 35.8 (± 2.9)]. The focus groups were transcribed, coded and analyzed qualitatively.

RESULTS:

The themes that emerged were program content, format, program characteristics, program name, location and duration. A major finding from the study is that participants value a program that includes nutritional, psychological and lifestyle interventions, and includes components that are not traditionally part of weight management programs such as body acceptance, sexual health and dressing and grooming. A program name that conveys wellness and body positivity was valued. Participants highlighted the importance of individualized programs that are also tailored to the needs of young adults, and delivered by credible and approachable staff who provide accountability. Cost-effectiveness, flexibility, accessibility, time-commitment were important considerations and the use of a combination of virtual and in-person methods (including group interventions) appealed to this cohort.

CONCLUSION:

Knowledge of program features which resonate with young women facilitates development of innovative ways to engage and support evidence-based weight management in this vulnerable group.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:

V.

KEYWORDS:

Weight management program; Young women with obesity

PMID:
31473985
DOI:
10.1007/s40519-019-00763-z

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