Tuesday, May 18, 2010

"Slow and Steady" May Not Win for Weight Loss

Source: Health Day (Summary by NIM)

Changing your lifestyle, becoming healthier and losing weight certainly takes hard work and patience, but new research suggest that 'slow and steady' may not be the best way to go when it comes to long-term weight loss.

According to a new study, individuals who lost weight more quickly, meaning about 1.5 lbs per week, tended to continue on with this trend and maintain their new weight in the long-term compared to individuals who 'took their time' losing weight.
"Those who make the behavior changes early do better in terms of weight loss and long term [in keeping it off].", said one of the researchers. It is generally recommended that people aim to lose 1-2 lbs per week to be safe, depending on their starting weight and caloric intake.

Remember that 1 lb of weight loss equals cutting 500 calories from your diet each day, whereas 2 lbs would mean a daily deficit of 1000 calories. For some people, this is simply impossible and would translate to starvation. The researchers conducting this study emphasized that they are not promoting starvation or crash diets by any means. They believe the results of their study point to the fact that people who are more committed from the get-go tend to stay focused and reach their goals faster than people who aren't completely on board to lose weight, adding that
"The fast group attended more sessions [to talk about weight loss], completed more food records and ate fewer calories than the slow group".

Find out more about this study by reading the article called "Quick Weight Loss May Be Best for Long-Term Success" from Health Day (May 14, 2010).