THE Most Effective Weight Loss Solution, Part II

March 23, 2010

Someone — I don’t remember who — told me that if you want to achieve the success of another person, do what that person did to become successful.  Not sure if I read that or if someone gave me that little bit of wisdom in person.

Anyway, another good saying is this: success leaves markers…kind of like leaving breadcrumbs when you’re going through a jungle and you want to be able to find your way back, or you want someone to be able to find where you are.

So, what about people that have successfully lost weight and kept it off?  Do they leave clues regarding how to imitate their weight loss success?  Well, sure they do!  We just have to find them and ask them about what they did to lose fat and keep it at bay.  Luckily, some researches have done just that.


In a 1997 study titled, “A Descriptive Study of Individuals Successful at Long-Term Maintenance of substantial Weight Loss”, 784 people (629 women and 155 men) that had lost weight and kept it off were studied for the purpose of finding out why and how they were successful.

Before getting into what they did, here’s some information about the participants in this study.

* The minimum weight loss a person had to have achieved and maintained to be eligible for this study was 30 lb.  However, on average, the participants in this study lost 66 lb., and 14% of the people had lost 100 lb. or more!

* The participants had kept their weight off an average of 5.5 years. This is significant because 95% of dieters gain their weight back in 3 – 5 years.

*  Most of the registry participants had become obese as children.  46% became overweight at 11 years old or younger; 25.3% become overweight between 12 and 18 years of age.  Only 28.3% become overweight after becoming legal adults at age 18.
Now that you know a little about the weight loss people, let’s look into HOW they did it.

* 55% used a formal program or professional assistance.  The remaining 45% lost weight on their own.

* To lose weight, they exercised and they modified their diet.  89% changed their eating habits and changed their activity levels to achieve their weight loss.  10% changed diet alone.  1% used exercise alone.

* 92% said they exercised at home during their weight loss.  Given that only 90% said they changed their activity levels (see paragraph above), 2% must have already been exercising, and then added dietary modification.

So, to summarize, the weight losers used dietary changes along with exercise to lose their weight.  As has been stated in this blog, that (the combination of exercise and diet) is THE MOST EFFECTIVE METHOD OF FAT LOSS!

Now, how do you maintain fat loss after it has been achieved?  We’ll look into that tomorrow.


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2 Responses to “THE Most Effective Weight Loss Solution, Part II”

  1. Hi Darryl,

    I wonder about with the folks who released more than 20 something pounds as part of the professional assistance they utilized included any emotional work and emotional behavior modification. Retraining your eating is not just following the instruction DON’T eat that. The emotional aspect of over eating or making poor food choices typically needs to be addressed as well.

    As a PT, do you find your clients raise these sort of issues to you casually in a conversational mode after having worked out with you for a time?

    Happy Dating and Relationships,

    April Braswell

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