Monday, December 14, 2015

The Secrets to Weight Loss: Keep a Food Journal, Don’t Skip Meals, Eat In

The Secrets to Weight Loss: Keep a Food Journal, Don’t Skip Meals, Eat In
By Alexandra Sifferlin @acsifferlinJuly 13, 2012

A new yearlong study of weight loss in overweight or obese women identified three key strategies for taking off unwanted pounds. The No. 1 tip for success? Writing down everything you eat or drink in a food journal.

Also: don’t skip meals and avoid eating out at restaurants too often. Underlying all three strategies is a sense of mindfulness, the authors say — being acutely aware and accountable for every morsel you eat. “It is difficult to make changes to your diet when you are not paying close attention to what you are eating,” said study author Dr. Anne McTiernan, director of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, in a statement.

The study of 123 sedentary postmenopausal women aged 50 to 75 randomly assigned participants to one of two weight-loss plans: restricted-calorie diet only, or exercise plus diet. The women filled out a series of questionnaires detailing their dietary intake, any eating-related weight-loss strategies they used, meal patterns and other behaviors like eating out or food journaling. They also filled out a 120-item food frequency questionnaire to track dietary changes from the beginning to the end of the one-year study.

On average, women in both groups lost weight, about 11% of their starting weight, or 19 lbs., which met the study’s goals. But McTiernan and her colleagues noticed that certain strategies the women used were associated with more weight loss.

Full article from Time Magazine here.