Self-management of a disease is defined as "having or being able to obtain, the skills and resources necessary to best accommodate to the chronic disease and its consequences" (Holman & Lorig, 1992, p. 309). Self-management has been used in the management of several chronic conditions and this model may be useful in the management of weight loss. This research explored the relationships amongst participation in a self-management weight loss program and weight change, patient activation, health distress, and behavioral change. The purpose of this study was to evaluate a self-management weight loss program and provide some insight into factors that may need to be addressed when designing a weight loss program. Participants completed a six-week weight loss program that consisted of three components: exercise, nutrition classes, and self-management classes. Weight, patient activation, health distress and goal setting behaviors were collected at the beginning of the program and at completion of the program.
Participation in the program was statistically significant associated for weight loss, change in health distress, and change in patient activation. Although the self-management model has been useful in other chronic diseases, further exploration is needed to understand the role of the model in weight loss programs.