Mind Matters In Keeping Weight Off
Wednesday, 11 July 2012
By Scott Douglas
If you've lost weight and want to keep it off your body, then look to your mind, according to a study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
In the study, researchers looked at people who had lost at least 10 per cent of their bodyweight in the last two years. They divided the people into two groups: those who had regained at least one-third of the lost weight ("regainers") and those who had regained no more than 15 per cent of what they'd lost ("maintainers").
What did the maintainers do that regainers didn't? For the most part, they stuck with what netted the weight loss in the first place, including obvious tactics like regular weigh-ins and self-monitoring their food and exercise choices. But in contrast to the regainers, they also engaged in more positive self-talk and kept working on problemsolving skills. The regainers, meanwhile, identified decreased accountability and decreased motivation as barriers to keeping the weight off. As the researchers put it:
“These findings suggest that weight loss maintenance efforts can be improved by addressing challenges such as long-term self-monitoring and problemsolving skills, and that maintenance success might depend on how people think as much as what they do.”
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