Though the vast majority of people trying to lose weight do so on their own, without support from healthcare professionals or formal weight loss programmes, most research into weight loss focusses on more intensive programmes. We therefore set out to find out more about what people do when trying to lose weight on their own.
As part of this work, we conducted three qualitative systematic reviews to explore people’s experiences with self-directed weight loss. The first review provides an overview of the cognitive and behavioural strategies used during self-directed weight loss attempts, and the second two reviews delve further into particular weight loss strategies that emerged as part of the overview, namely self-monitoring and reframing. In this talk, I’ll cover key findings from each of the three reviews, and also use these reviews to illustrate how qualitative syntheses can be conducted and used to shed light on people’s experiences.
Jamie Hartmann-Boyce is a Senior Researcher in Health Behaviours, based at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford. Her work focusses on obesity and tobacco control and her particular interests lie in evidence synthesis and systematic reviews.