Table of Contents

Locator Record

Title: Weight History section (WHQ_B )
Contact Number: 1-866-441-NCHS
Years of Content: 2001 - 2002
First Published: June, 2010
Revised: NA
Access Constraints: None
Use Constraints: None
Geographic Coverage: National
Subject:Weight History Section of the NHANES Questionnaire
Record Source: NHANES 2001 - 2002
Survey Methodology: NHANES 2001 - 2002 is a stratified multistage probability sample of the civilian non-institutionalized population of the U.S.
Medium: NHANES Web site; SAS transport files

Component Description

The Weight History section (abbreviated “WHQ” in the NHANES questionnaire variable-naming convention scheme) provides personal interview data on several topics related to body weight, including self-reported weight over the lifetime, self-perception of weight, attempted weight loss during the past 12 months, and methods used to try to lose weight and to keep from gaining weight.

Eligible Sample

The target samples for questions in this section vary. Please review the questionnaire and codebook carefully. Frequency counts were verified during the preparation of the file.

 

Interview Setting and Mode of Administration

In-person
Topics Included in the Section:
• Current self-reported height and weight (16+ yr)
• Self perception of weight (16+ yr)
• Desire for weight change (16+ yr)
• Weight 1 year ago (16+ yr)
• Intentional weight change and weight loss/maintenance methods (16+ yr)
• Attempted weight loss during the past 12 months (16+ yr)
• Weight 10 years ago (36+ yr)
• Weight at age 25 (27+ yr)
• Height at age 25 (50+ yr)
• Maximum weight and age at maximum weight (18+ yr)

Data Processing and Editing

In 2001-2002, current weight (WHD020) for pregnant women was recorded as weight before pregnancy. In 1999-2000, current weight included weight during pregnancy.
Self-reported height was standardized to inches using the conversion factors 0.3937 inches per centimeter and 12 inches per foot. Current and past self-reported weights were standardized to weight in pounds using the conversion factor 2.2046 pounds per kilogram.

Reported heights and weights considered to be physiologically implausible and the result of interviewer data entry error, e.g., height less than 3 feet and weight less than 50 pounds, were coded as “Don’t Know.”

For WHD150, if maximum weight extended over more than one year, the interviewer recorded the most recent age at which the survey participant reported that weight.
Beginning in 2002, WHD160 (minimum weight since age 18 (19+ yr)) and WHQ170 (age at minimum weight) were no longer collected. WHD160 and WHQ170 data from 2001 are not included in this data release file but can be accessed at the NCHS Research Data Center.

References

Codebook and Frequencies

SEQN - Respondent sequence number

Variable Name:
SEQN
SAS Label:
Respondent sequence number
English Text:
Respondent sequence number.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS

WHD010 - Current self-reported height (inches)

Variable Name:
WHD010
SAS Label:
Current self-reported height (inches)
English Text:
These next questions ask about {your/SP's} height and weight at different times in {your/his/her} life. How tall {are you/is SP} without shoes?
English Instructions:
ENTER HEIGHT IN FEET AND INCHES OR METERS AND CENTIMETERS
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
41 to 81 Range of Values 6472 6472
7777 Refused 5 6477
9999 Don't know 132 6609
. Missing 25 6634

WHD020 - Current self-reported weight (pounds)

Variable Name:
WHD020
SAS Label:
Current self-reported weight (pounds)
English Text:
How much {do you/does SP} weigh without clothes or shoes?
English Instructions:
RECORD CURRENT WEIGHT. INCLUDE WEIGHT DURING PREGNANCY. ENTER WEIGHT IN POUNDS OR KILOGRAMS.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
50 to 450 Range of Values 6524 6524
7777 Refused 14 6538
9999 Don't know 92 6630
. Missing 4 6634

WHQ030 - How do you consider your weight

Variable Name:
WHQ030
SAS Label:
How do you consider your weight
English Text:
{Do you/Does SP} consider {your/his/her}self now to be . . .
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
1 Overweight, 3154 3154
2 Underweight, or 441 3595
3 About the right weight? 3013 6608
7 Refused 5 6613
9 Don't know 17 6630
. Missing 4 6634

WHQ040 - Like to weigh more, less or same

Variable Name:
WHQ040
SAS Label:
Like to weigh more, less or same
English Text:
Would {you/SP} like to weigh . . .
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
1 More, 606 606
2 Less, or 3557 4163
3 Stay about the same? 2456 6619
7 Refused 5 6624
9 Don't know 6 6630
. Missing 4 6634

WHD050 - Self-reported weight-1 yr ago (pounds)

Variable Name:
WHD050
SAS Label:
Self-reported weight-1 yr ago (pounds)
English Text:
How much did {you/SP} weigh a year ago?
English Instructions:
ENTER WEIGHT IN POUNDS OR KILOGRAMS. IF PREGNANT, ASK FOR WEIGHT BEFORE PREGNANCY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
75 to 430 Range of Values 6491 6491
7777 Refused 15 6506
9999 Don't know 124 6630
. Missing 4 6634

WHQ055 - Check Item

Variable Name:
WHQ055
SAS Label:
Check Item
English Text:
English Instructions:
:BOX 1. CHECK ITEM WHQ.055: IF WEIGHT IN WHD.050 IS 10 POUNDS, 4.55 KILOGRAMS, OR MORE THAN WEIGHT IN WHD.020 (E.G., WHQ.0509 = 150 LBS AND WHD.020 = 135 LBS), CONTINUE. OTHERWISE, GO TO WHQ.070.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS

WHQ060 - Weight change intentional

Variable Name:
WHQ060
SAS Label:
Weight change intentional
English Text:
Was the change between {your/SP's} current weight and {your/his/her} weight a year ago intentional?
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
1 Yes 577 577 WHD080A
2 No 467 1044
7 Refused 0 1044
9 Don't know 0 1044
. Missing 5590 6634

WHQ070 - Tried to lose weight in past year

Variable Name:
WHQ070
SAS Label:
Tried to lose weight in past year
English Text:
During the past 12 months, {have you/has SP} tried to lose weight?
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
1 Yes 1757 1757
2 No 4287 6044 WHQ090
7 Refused 4 6048 WHQ090
9 Don't know 5 6053 WHQ090
. Missing 581 6634

WHD080A - Ate less food

Variable Name:
WHD080A
SAS Label:
Ate less food
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
10 Ate less food (amount) 1518 1518
77 Refused 0 1518
99 Don't know 2 1520
. Missing 5114 6634

WHD080B - Switched to foods with lower calories

Variable Name:
WHD080B
SAS Label:
Switched to foods with lower calories
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
11 Switched to foods with lower calories 805 805
. Missing 5829 6634

WHD080C - Ate less fat

Variable Name:
WHD080C
SAS Label:
Ate less fat
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
12 Ate less fat 980 980
. Missing 5654 6634

WHD080D - Exercised

Variable Name:
WHD080D
SAS Label:
Exercised
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
13 Exercised 1396 1396
. Missing 5238 6634

WHD080E - Skipped meals

Variable Name:
WHD080E
SAS Label:
Skipped meals
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
14 Skipped meals 417 417
. Missing 6217 6634

WHD080F - Ate diet foods or products

Variable Name:
WHD080F
SAS Label:
Ate diet foods or products
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
15 Ate diet foods or products 236 236
. Missing 6398 6634

WHD080G - Used a liquid diet formula

Variable Name:
WHD080G
SAS Label:
Used a liquid diet formula
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
16 Used a liquid diet formula such as Slimfast or Optifast 224 224
. Missing 6410 6634

WHD080H - Joined a weight loss program

Variable Name:
WHD080H
SAS Label:
Joined a weight loss program
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
17 Joined a weight loss program such as Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Tops, or Overeaters Anonymous 114 114
. Missing 6520 6634

WHD080I - Took prescription diet pills

Variable Name:
WHD080I
SAS Label:
Took prescription diet pills
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
31 Took diet pills prescribed by a doctor 72 72
. Missing 6562 6634

WHD080J - Took non-prescription diet pills

Variable Name:
WHD080J
SAS Label:
Took non-prescription diet pills
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
32 Took other pills, medicines, herbs, or supplements not needing a prescription 242 242
. Missing 6392 6634

WHD080K - Took laxatives or vomited

Variable Name:
WHD080K
SAS Label:
Took laxatives or vomited
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
33 Took laxitives or vomited 55 55
. Missing 6579 6634

WHD080L - Other

Variable Name:
WHD080L
SAS Label:
Other
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
40 Other 75 75
. Missing 6559 6634

WHD080M - Drank a lot of water

Variable Name:
WHD080M
SAS Label:
Drank a lot of water
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
34 Drank a lot of water 643 643 End of Section
. Missing 5991 6634

WHD080N - Followed a special diet

Variable Name:
WHD080N
SAS Label:
Followed a special diet
English Text:
How did {you/SP} try to lose weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
30 Followed a special diet such as Dr. Atkins, other high protein or low carbohydrate diet, zone, grapefruit, Pritikin (specify) 125 125 End of Section
. Missing 6509 6634

WHQ090 - Tried not to gain weight in past year

Variable Name:
WHQ090
SAS Label:
Tried not to gain weight in past year
English Text:
During the past 12 months, {have you/has SP} done anything to keep from gaining weight?
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
1 Yes 2283 2283
2 No 4339 6622 WHD110
7 Refused 4 6626 WHD110
9 Don't know 4 6630 WHD110
. Missing 4 6634

WHD100a - Ate less food

Variable Name:
WHD100a
SAS Label:
Ate less food
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
10 Ate less food (amount) 1377 1377
77 Refused 0 1377
99 Don't know 2 1379
. Missing 5255 6634

WHD100b - Switched to foods with lower calories

Variable Name:
WHD100b
SAS Label:
Switched to foods with lower calories
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
11 Switched to foods with lower calories 718 718
. Missing 5916 6634

WHD100c - Ate less fat

Variable Name:
WHD100c
SAS Label:
Ate less fat
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
12 Ate less fat 897 897
. Missing 5737 6634

WHD100d - Exercised

Variable Name:
WHD100d
SAS Label:
Exercised
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
13 Exercised 1266 1266
. Missing 5368 6634

WHD100e - Skipped meals

Variable Name:
WHD100e
SAS Label:
Skipped meals
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
14 Skipped meals 275 275
. Missing 6359 6634

WHD100f - Ate diet foods or products

Variable Name:
WHD100f
SAS Label:
Ate diet foods or products
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
15 Ate diet foods or products 149 149
. Missing 6485 6634

WHD100g - Used a liquid diet formula

Variable Name:
WHD100g
SAS Label:
Used a liquid diet formula
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
16 Used a liquid diet formula such as Slimfast or Optifast 115 115
. Missing 6519 6634

WHD100h - Joined a weight loss program

Variable Name:
WHD100h
SAS Label:
Joined a weight loss program
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
17 Joined a weight loss program such as Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Tops, or Overeaters Anonymous 76 76
. Missing 6558 6634

WHD100i - Took prescription diet pills

Variable Name:
WHD100i
SAS Label:
Took prescription diet pills
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
31 Took diet pills prescribed by a doctor 39 39
. Missing 6595 6634

WHD100j - Took non-prescription diet pills

Variable Name:
WHD100j
SAS Label:
Took non-prescription diet pills
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
32 Took other pills, medicines, herbs, or supplements not needing a prescription 131 131
. Missing 6503 6634

WHD100k - Took laxatives or vomited

Variable Name:
WHD100k
SAS Label:
Took laxatives or vomited
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
33 Took laxitives or vomited 36 36
. Missing 6598 6634

WHD100l - Other

Variable Name:
WHD100l
SAS Label:
Other
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
40 Other 69 69
. Missing 6565 6634

WHD100M - Drank a lot of water

Variable Name:
WHD100M
SAS Label:
Drank a lot of water
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
34 Drank a lot of water to not gain weight 466 466 End of Section
. Missing 6168 6634

WHD100N - Followed a special diet

Variable Name:
WHD100N
SAS Label:
Followed a special diet
English Text:
What did {you/SP} do to keep from gaining weight?
English Instructions:
HAND CARD WHQ1. CODE ALL THAT APPLY.
Target:
Both males and females 16 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
30 Followed a special diet such as Dr. Atkins, other high protein or low carbohydrate diet, zone, grapefruit, Pritikin (specify) 64 64 End of Section
. Missing 6570 6634

WHD110 - Self-reported weight-10 yrs ago (pounds)

Variable Name:
WHD110
SAS Label:
Self-reported weight-10 yrs ago (pounds)
English Text:
How much did {you/SP} weigh 10 years ago? [If you don't know {your/his/her} exact weight, please make your best guess.]
English Instructions:
ENTER WEIGHT IN POUNDS OR KILOGRAMS. IF PREGNANT, ASK FOR WEIGHT BEFORE PREGNANCY.
Target:
Both males and females 36 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
74 to 400 Range of Values 3734 3734
7777 Refused 9 3743
9999 Don't know 102 3845
. Missing 2789 6634

WHD120 - Self-reported weight - age 25 (pounds)

Variable Name:
WHD120
SAS Label:
Self-reported weight - age 25 (pounds)
English Text:
How much did {you/SP} weigh at age 25? [If you don't know {your/his/her} exact weight, please make your best guess.]
English Instructions:
ENTER WEIGHT IN POUNDS OR KILOGRAMS. IF PREGNANT, ASK FOR WEIGHT BEFORE PREGNANCY.
Target:
Both males and females 27 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
69 to 400 Range of Values 4440 4440
7777 Refused 13 4453
9999 Don't know 208 4661
. Missing 1973 6634

WHD130 - Self-reported height - age 25 (inches)

Variable Name:
WHD130
SAS Label:
Self-reported height - age 25 (inches)
English Text:
How tall {were you/was SP} at age 25? [If you don't know {your/his/her} exact height, please make your best guess.]
English Instructions:
ENTER HEIGHT IN FEET AND INCHES OR METERS AND CENTIMETERS
Target:
Both males and females 50 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
41 to 83 Range of Values 2455 2455
7777 Refused 9 2464
9999 Don't know 84 2548
. Missing 4086 6634

WHD140 - Self-reported greatest weight(pounds)

Variable Name:
WHD140
SAS Label:
Self-reported greatest weight(pounds)
English Text:
Up to the present time, what is the most {you have/SP has} ever weighed?
English Instructions:
ENTER WEIGHT IN POUNDS OR KILOGRAMS. DO NOT INCLUDE WEIGHT DURING PREGNANCY.
Target:
Both males and females 18 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
85 to 500 Range of Values 5855 5855
7777 Refused 14 5869
9999 Don't know 120 5989
. Missing 645 6634

WHQ150 - Age when heaviest weight

Variable Name:
WHQ150
SAS Label:
Age when heaviest weight
English Text:
How old {were you/was SP} then? [If you don't know {your/his/her} exact age, please make your best guess.]
English Instructions:
ENTER AGE IN YEARS
Target:
Both males and females 18 YEARS - 150 YEARS
Hard Edits:
1 to 120
Code or Value Value Description Count Cumulative Skip to Item
8 to 84 Range of Values 5770 5770
85 85 or older 56 5826
77777 Refused 0 5826
99999 Don't know 48 5874
. Missing 760 6634