What inspires women to lose weight? Swimsuit season, weddings, family and class reunions, holiday parties and other events that put them...

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What inspires women to lose weight? Swimsuit season, weddings, family and class reunions, holiday parties and other events that put them in the spotlight. For men, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated blood lipids, sleep apnea and back or joint pain inspire the need to “get in shape.”

Karen Miller-Kovach, chief scientific officer for Weight Watchers International, is the author of a new book, “She Loses, He Loses,” which looks at the differences in how the sexes approach diet and exercise.

Here are her findings:

Estimating weight status

Women: Quick to realize she’s overweight

Men: Usually underestimates amount of weight he needs to lose

Weight-loss vernacular

Women: “Diet”

Men: “Get in shape”

History of dieting

Women: Lots, a variety of approaches and failures

Men: Not much, so more confident of success

Knowledge about dieting

Women: Knowledgeable about nutrition, diet and weight-loss news

Men: Lacks basic knowledge about science of food and weight loss

Exercise

Women: Beneficial to weight loss, but avoidable

Men: Expected component of weight-loss success

Overall approach to weight loss

Women: Quick to initiate, but prone to stop and start

Men: Serious, disciplined, structured