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Action for Health in Diabetes (Look AHEAD) Study

Look AHEAD (Action For Health in Diabetes) is a multicenter randomized clinical trial to examine the effects of a lifestyle intervention designed to achieve and maintain weight loss over the long term through decreased caloric intake and exercise. Look AHEAD is focusing on the disease most affected by overweight and obesity, type 2 diabetes, and on the outcome that causes the greatest morbidity and mortality, cardiovascular disease.

The primary aim of Look AHEAD is to study the effects of the two interventions on major cardiovascular events: heart attack, stroke and cardiovascular-related death. Look AHEAD also will investigate the impact of the interventions on other cardiovascular disease-related outcomes, cardiovascular risk factors, and all-cause mortality. Additional outcomes include: diabetes control and complications, fitness, general health, health-related quality of life and psychological outcomes. The cost and cost effectiveness of the Lifestyle Intervention relative to Diabetes Support and Education will be assessed.

The Look AHEAD trial has completed enrollment of 5,145 obese patients with type 2 diabetes. At study entry, participants were randomly assigned to one of two interventions, the Lifestyle Intervention or Diabetes Support and Education. They will be followed for a total period of up to 11.5 years.

JHU Investigators

Frederick Brancati, MD, MHS, FACP

Principal Investigator

Jeanne Clark, MD, MPH, FACP

Co-Principal Investigator


Sixteen Look AHEAD Clinical Centers and a Data Coordinating Center were funded to participate in the Look AHEAD study. The trial has been designed collaboratively by the investigators of these 16 Clinical Centers, the Data Coordinating Center, the NIH and the CDC.

Other sponsoring institutes and organizations include the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR), the Office of Research on Women´s Health (ORWH), the National Center for Minority Health and Health Disparities (NCMHD), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Ancillary Studies

A number of Look AHEAD ancillary studies will elucidate additional topics, such as fatty liver disease, sleep apnea and eating disorders in Look AHEAD participants.
To propose an ancillary study or to see what ancillary studies have already been approved, visit

Research Publications

Investigators have published numerous scientific articles that draw on data generated by the Look AHEAD Study. Many of these can be found in the PubMed Database.