A new study releasedby the Baylor College of Medicine compared dieters engaged in Weight Watchersor other weight-loss support programs with those who were going through theprocess alone. The results showed thatthose engaged in support groups shed more overall weight, and kept it offlonger, than those engaged in solo support.
Furthermore, theWeight Watchers-sponsored study concluded that the more frequently users engagedin these groups and took advantage of the various tools offered, the moreweight they lost at the end of the program.
Study authorsdetermined that programs like Weight Watchers assist participants in stayingengaged, and provide encouragement and support through plateaus or fallbacksover just an initial push to lose weight from a physician, or even a personalgoal. Weight Watchers proved to be themost supportive of these programs, but the key to success overall appeared tobe having support and encouragement when the dieting program becomes difficultto follow.
The study observed sixmonths of data on approximately 257 participants, and found those enrolled inWeight Watchers lost an average of 5 percent of their starting weight, whilethose who were not engaged in a program lost less than 1 percent of theirstarting weight. The more tools theprogram offered, and the more the participant took advantage of those tools,the more weight they lost overall.
This study shows thatany form of social support, whether it’s from family, friends, or WeightWatchers type program or other group, can assist in making the kind of changesone requires to develop healthy habits. Social engagement is key in losing weight and becoming more active, andprograms like Weight Watchers provide a positive environment to assist inaffecting these changes. If looking tomake changes in a nutritional lifestyle or become more physically active, aperson should set goals themselves, but reach out socially for help in reachingthose goals.
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