Checking your weight daily can keep you from gaining weight over the holidays, according to a study to be released in an Obesity Society issue this June.
One hundred eleven US Adults who are 18 to 65 years old were the respondents of the said study that started from November last year and was completed on January 2019. A 14-week follow up was done post-intervention.
Results from the study show that the participants who did daily self-weighing and at the same time got graphical feedback on their weight shifts were able to maintain or shed off some of their weight. On the other hand, the participants who did not practice day to day self-weighing put on some pounds.
All of the study’s participants received instructions to retain their baseline weights all through the holiday season but were not given guidance on how to do so. They were given the freedom to select their strategies on how to achieve this goal.
Author of the study Dr. Jamie Cooper of the University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences explains that this was based on their awareness that one type of intervention may not be suited to some of the participants.
According to Michelle vanDellen, associate professor from the same University and co-author of the study, the results of the study substantiates the self-discrepancy theory which claims that people create “self guides” which they compare themselves with as a way of self-regulation.
She explains that people are led to behavioral change when they become aware of the discrepancies between their current selves and their goals, and this is how self-weighing daily worked on the participants.
Previous studies observed that the additional pounds gained from the holiday season are difficult to shed off and might eventually lead to a yearly weight increase.
The authors of the study suggest that supplementary studies be made to find out whether daily self-weighing with graphical feedback can still help maintain or lose weight.
In the same way, medical doctor and obesity researcher Susan Yanovski (who was not part of the research) recommend a similar study with larger and more diverse participants in order to prove the validity scope of the intervention.