There is widespread misperception about what constitutes meaningful lifestyle change

One of the crucial insights of the DPP study was that even minor weight loss, equivalent to 5%–7% of body weight, makes a significant difference. Yet there remains a prevailing assumption that only major weight loss can lead to improved health, and the perceived difficulty of losing huge amounts of weight can prevent people from attempting less drastic lifestyle change. “People are still struggling under catastrophic weight loss models,” Dr. Marrero said. “It’s kind of a learned helplessness model.” However, Dr. Scott Isaacs, Medical Director of Atlanta Endocrine Associates, cautioned us not to take the 5%–7% rule from the DPP study as gospel—that amount of weight loss is sufficient for significant diabetes prevention, but greater weight loss may have even more substantial benefits, both for diabetes and other conditions associated with being overweight and obesity. In addition, the DPP made clear that other lifestyle factors beyond just weight are also important in preventing or delaying diabetes.