Health and appearance reasons for weight loss as predictors of long-term weight change

Joseph E. Mroz, Carol H Pullen, Patricia A. Hageman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study investigated whether women’s initial reasons (health, appearance to others, or appearance to self) for wanting to lose weight influenced their weight change over a 30-month web-based intervention. Multilevel modeling with 1416 observations revealed that only appearance in relation to one’s self was a significant (negative) predictor. Women highly motivated to lose weight to improve their appearance in relation to themselves gained weight at 30 months, whereas those not motivated for this reason achieved clinically significant weight loss. Results suggest examining participants’ initial reasons for weight loss as an important component of intervention failure or success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalHealth Psychology Open
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018



  • appearance
  • body image
  • females
  • health behavior
  • weight loss
  • women’s health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this