'Maintain, Don't Gain' May Work Best for Obese Black Women

Study aimed at this high-risk group found weight-maintenance approach was more effective than weight-loss program

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"As Surgeon General, my whole focus was on prevention," Benjamin said. "This innovative approach fits right into that because it shows that, even if you don't call it 'healthy,' a doctor can give me a healthy lifestyle prescription that I can actually live with and incorporate into my family, my daily life, my church life."

"It's also a positive new way of thinking about health that isn't about telling people that you can't do this and you can't do that," Benjamin said. "It doesn't focus on your dress size or what the scales say. It focuses on feeling better and the enjoyable aspects of healthy living by telling people that [they're] going to have a better outcome overall. You and your family are going to feel better and be happier. That's the reward."

More information

For more on obesity and black women, visit womenshealth.gov.

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