Weight Management for Students with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): A Qualitative Study

Ayelet Siman Tov, Inbal Halevi Hochwald, Riki Tesler, Gizell Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


(1) Background: Individuals with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are more likely to respond with an ineffective coping behavior, combined with an increased risk of weight gain and unhealthy food consumption. The aim of the study was to examine coping strategies adopted by overweight adults with ADHD to promote healthy behaviors and weight-control management. (2) Methods: Descriptive qualitative research using semi-structured interviews analyzed through a thematic content-analysis approach. The study included 30 college students diagnosed with ADHD, with a BMI ≥ 25.5, who had lost ≥10 kg within at least one year and successfully maintained that weight for the past three years. (3) Results: The study yielded two main themes. The first is struggling with disappointments and negative feelings in the past, and the second is the reciprocity between weight management and coping skills strategies. The second theme includes three subthemes—cognitive strategies, behavioral strategies, and emotional strategies. (4) Conclusions: It is essential to understand the variety of coping strategies used by adults to cope with ADHD challenges that can potentially improve weight control management and healthy behaviors to design better, more accurate interventions, promoting the target population’s well-being and health.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2225
JournalHealthcare (Switzerland)
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2022


  • ADHD
  • coping strategies
  • health behaviors
  • obesity/overweight
  • students
  • weight management

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Leadership and Management
  • Health Policy
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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