A new study performed by researchers at Duke University has given an interesting new approach to dieting. The theory is simple…just don’t gain weight. They feel that by focusing on not gaining any weight and being more conscious of that as opposed to being so focused on losing pounds, it will create a long-term effect that will help women not become more obese.
When you diet, you get frustrated when you see that you keep gaining weight instead of losing it, right? Those one or two pounds that you are gaining here or there can turn into a world of heartache later on down the road. The more that your weight creeps up, the heavier you will be as time goes on. This new approach from the researchers at Duke dictates that you don’t worry about losing weight and instead focus on not gaining anything.
A total of 194 African-American women who were pre-menopausal were studied. They were all obese with a BMI average of 30.2. The CDC says that 80% of African-American women are considered overweight or obese and they have a harder time losing the weight. The participants were told that their goal was not to lose weight but to maintain the shape and size that they already had. They made healthful food choices but shaved off less than 200 calories per day from their meals. They were also given YMCA memberships so that they could become more active during the day. This was conducted over a year long period and was dubbed the “self-care” group.
The “usual care” group didn’t get any special weight management perks or nutrition tips. They simply received a health newsletter every other month for 12 months. At the end of the study the “self-care” group had dropped an average of 2 pounds per person while the “usual-care” group did not. The “usual-care” group had their weight slowly creep up on them.
The point of the study was to show that not everyone needed to focus as much on the weight loss part of a healthy diet and exercise regimen, but needed to focus on not becoming more obese than they already were.