1. Science supports that intentional weight loss can be maintained long-term for most people.
Intentional weight loss cannot be maintained in the long-term for the majority of people.
Within the 1 st year of stopping a diet, less than 20% of people are able to maintain their
weight loss 1 and most people regain about 30-35% of the weight they had lost 2 Within a few
years, 90-95% of dieters regain all their lost weight, 3 and within 4-5 years 33-66% of dieters
regain more weight than they lost. 4
This happens for a variety of reasons, the primary one being that the body perceives a diet
to be a famine and does everything in its power to fight against it, including:
• Making and storing more fat 5
• Increasing hunger hormones 6
• More carb cravings 7
• Slower metabolism 8,9
1. Wing RR, Phelan S, “Long-term weight loss maintenance.” Am J Clin Nutr. 2005;82(1):222S-225S.
2. Garner DM, Wooley SC. Confronting the failure of behavioral and dietary treatments of obesity. Clin Psychol Rev.
3. Wadden TA, Butryn ML, Byrne KJ. Efficacy of lifestyle modification for long-term weight control. Obes Res.
4. Mann T, Tomiyama AJ, Westling E, Lew A-M, Samuels B, Chatman J. Medicare's search for effective obesity treatments.
Am Psychol. 2007;62(3):220-233.
5. Kern PA, Ong JM, Saffari B, Carty J. The effects of weight loss on the activity and expression of adipose-tissue lipoprotein
lipase in very obese humans. N Engl J Med. 1990. 322(15):1053-1059.
6. Cummings DE, Weigle DS, Frayo RS, et al. Plasma ghrelin levels after diet-induced weight loss or gastric bypass surgery.
N Engl J Med. 2002;346:1623-1630.
7. Leibowitz SF. Brain neuropeptide Y: An integrator of endocrine, metabolic and behavioral processes. Brain Res Bull.
8. Fothergill E, Guo J, Howard L, et al. Persistent Metabolic Adaptation 6 Years After “The Biggest Loser” Competition.
9. Wadden TA, Foster GD, Letizia KA, Mullen JL. Long-term effects of dieting on resting metabolic rate in obese outpatients.
2. What is the most common eating disorder in the United States?
ANSWER: B) Binge Eating Disorder
Approximately 2.8 million Americans have binge eating disorder, according to National Eating Disorders Awareness (NEDA.)
3. Food insecurity, defined as the lack of consistent access to enough food, can increase your
risk of binge eating. Answer: True
Many people in the Latinx community have limited finances and are at risk for not having
enough food or not having enough variety in their food choices. If you have experienced
this, it can deeply impact your relationship with food and your body because access to
enough food is a basic human need. People who experience food insecurity are at an
increased risk of binge eating when food is available, feeling shame about their bodies and
weight, and trying to compensate for their binge eating with dieting behaviors. 1 All of this can
increase the risk of developing an eating disorder.
Binge eating is a natural and normal response to not having enough food. The body is
simply trying to get what it needs, and if you are unsure when your next meal may be, it is
normal to overeat when enough food is available.
If you are currently food insecure, the priority is just to do your best to get three meals and
1-2 snacks throughout the day. It does not matter what the food is. The priority is just getting
1. Becker CB, Middlemass K, Taylor B, Johnson C, Gomez F. Food insecurity and eating disorder pathology. Int J Eat
4. True or False: Eating Disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.
Every 62 minutes at least one person dies as a direct result from an eating disorder.
5. What percentage of chronic dieters will develop partial or full-blown eating disorders?
ANSWER: A) 20-25% (1)
Collegiate Survey Project. National Eating Disorders Association.
https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/CollegiateSurveyProject. Published May 4, 2017. Accessed October 4, 2019.
6. Weight discrimination, including shaming comments from doctors and family, can impact the
ANSWER: e. All of the above (Answer)
1. Wu YK, Berry DC.Impact of weight stigma on physiological and psychological health outcomes for overweight and obese
adults: a systematic review. J Adv Nurs. 2018;74(5):1030-1042.
2. Phelan SM, Burgess DJ, Yeazel MW, Hellerstedt WL, Griffin JM, van Ryn M. Impact of weight bias and stigma on quality
of care and outcomes for patients with obesity. Obes Rev. 2015;16(4):319-326.
3. Himmelstein MS, Puhl RM, Quinn DM. Weight stigma and health: the mediating role of coping responses. Health Psychol.
4. O'Brien KS, Latner JD, Puhl RM, et al. The relationship between weight stigma and eating behavior is explained by weight
bias internalization and psychological distress. Appetite. 2016;102:70-76.
7. People in larger bodies cannot have anorexia nervosa.
There is a misconception that only people with low weight can be diagnosed with anorexia
nervosa. People in larger bodies can meet the criteria for anorexia nervosa based on behaviors
and the amount of weight they have lost. Many doctors and health practitioners miss the signs
of this eating disorder because of assumptions or biases they have about people in larger
bodies, and the assumption that anorexia only occurs in those with low body weight. It often
takes years for anyone (even the patient) to see they have a problem. Instead of asking
specifics about behaviors and the status of the person’s mental health due to the focus on their
weight, a person might receive praise for weight loss and praise for “being healthy”, but may
actually be suffering from disordered eating, including an eating disorder.
If you feel a large part of your brain space is taken up by health, weight and eating concerns,
please consult a trusted practitioner.
8. Yo-yo dieting can damage the heart, blood vessels, and kidneys.
Yo-yo dieting (losing and regaining weight) can put a strain on cardiovascular system,
which includes the heart, blood vessels, and kidneys. 1,2 This happens because these
organs must work harder to support the growth and decrease of muscles and fat that
occur during weight loss and weight regain.
1. Kroeger CM, Hoddy KK, Varady KA. Impact of weight regain on metabolic disease risk: a review of human trials. J Obes.
2. Montani JP, Viecelliz AK, A Prevot A, Dulloo AG. Weight cycling during growth and beyond as a risk factor for later
cardiovascular diseases: the ‘repeated overshoot’ theory. Int J Obes. 2006;30(4):S58-S66.
9. Carbs are bad for your health.
Eating carbohydrates (carbs) is necessary and gives our body energy. Our brains need the
equivalent of 3 cups of rice MINIMUM per day to function properly. And this doesn’t take into
account the amount of carbohydrate that the other parts of the body need. Additionally,
carbohydrates are an important part of Latinx cultures, kept our ancestors alive, continue to
connect us to our culture, and provide us emotional and physical nourishment.
Carb needs will vary from person-to-person depending on their activity and nutrition needs.
Play around with amounts that feel physically good for your body.
Some examples of carbohydrates are below. Dairy is also included, which is mostly protein
and fat, but does contain carbohydrates in the form of lactose.
Starches: white rice, tortillas, potatoes, arepas, white bread, white pasta, white
Whole grains: wheat bread, whole-wheat pasta, quinoa, buckwheat, millet, farro,
Starchy vegetables: corn, peas, yams, yucca, yautia, sweet potato
Fruits: apples, oranges, mangos, cherries, guavas, papaya, strawberries,
bananas, blueberries, raspberries, pears, avocados
Vegetables: tomato, carrots, broccoli, chayote, pumpkin, jicama, nopales, lettuce,
zucchini, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, asparagus, onion, garlic
Legumes: beans, lentils, garbanzos (chickpeas)
Dairy (contains just a little bit of carb): milk, yogurt, ice cream, cottage cheese
Sweeteners: white/brown sugar, honey, molasses, coconut sugar, agave, maple
Desserts: cakes, cookies, ice cream, pastries, candy, chocolate
Snack items: chips
If you or someone you know if struggling with an eating disorder please visit
or call the Eating Disorder Helpline