What’s the secret to losing weight in the New Year?
Are you starting to think about your New Year’s resolutions? If you are like many, weight loss may be near the top of your list. So what’s the secret to starting and sticking to your weight loss plan?
When patients ask Bob Carrara, diabetes educator at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, Ill, what behaviors they need to adapt to lose weight, he refers to the findings of the National Weight Control Registry.
“This is an ongoing study that began in 1994 with the goal of tracking the behaviors of people that take off at least 30 pounds in one year and can keep it off,” explains Carrara. “In fact, registry members have lost an average of 66 pounds and kept it off for over five years.”
Six of the most common behaviors for the study participants include:
- 78 percent eat breakfast every day
- 75 percent weigh themselves at least once a week
- 62 percent watch less than 10 hours of TV per week
- 90 percent exercise, on average, about one hour per day
- Average calories per day were 1,296 for women and 1,725 for men
- Eating out was limited to no more than three meals per week
“I reference these guidelines often when I am discussing successful weight loss behaviors with patients because they have a proven long-term record as opposed to many of the unproven guidelines that people are exposed to via the internet or the supermarket checkout line,” Carrara explains.
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