A new study found that frequent dieting puts people at greater risk of weight gain than non dieting. In fact, regular dieting was associated with greater weight gain than genetics. The study, which was published in the International Journal of Obesity, looked at over 4000 twins and found that, in those twins who regularly dieted, their weights were significantly higher than the twin who did not reguarly diet. Studies that look at differences between twin sets are good at eliminating the effect of genetics, since both twins would have similar genes.
Now this study certainly does not mean we should throw caution to the wind and eat beyond our needs. However, it does indicate that frequent dieting can end up leaving you further from your weight goals. That is why I always work with my clients to make lifestyle changes. By making modest, but long-term, changes with eating and activity, you can reach a healthy weight, and stay at that healthy weight. Sure, quick fixes that offer big weight loss in a short amount of time might seem appealing, but if it’s only going to make it easier for you to gain weight in the future, is it really worth it?