Stepping on a bathroom scale daily may help keep the weight off, new research shows.
The study, published in the Journal of Obesity, suggests that frequent weigh-ins and even charting weight daily help provide motivation to exercise, eat a healthy diet, and engage in other lifestyle changes to keep the pounds off, Medical News Today
For reasons the Cornell University researchers could not explain, the researchers found daily weigh-ins work better for men than women.
"You just need a bathroom scale and an excel spreadsheet or even a piece of graph paper," explained lead researcher David Levitsky, a professor of nutrition and psychology at.
He said tracking your weight helps maintain awareness of the link between your weight and what you eat.
"It used to be taught that you shouldn't weigh yourself daily, and this is just the reverse," he said.
For the study, Levitsky and colleagues recruited 162 overweight men and women for a weight-loss initiative, directing some to use a typical bathroom scale to weigh themselves at the same time every day and record the results on a website chart set up by the researchers.
Each participant was challenged to lose weight using whatever method they decided was right for them – eating less, skipping meals, cutting down on snacks.
After a year, the group using the scales lost more weight than those who didn’t. The researchers also found that men were significantly more successful than women at losing weight in the first year, and keeping it off in the second year.
"We think the scale also acts as a priming mechanism, making you conscious of food and enabling you to make choices that are consistent with your weight," Levitsky said.
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