Study reveals strong early weight loss leads to longer-term success
New analysis by CSIRO, Australia's national science agency, has revealed that a stronger start in the first three weeks of a diet is linked to greater weight loss success in the longer-term.
The study of over 22,000 CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet members showed those who started strongest in their weight loss journey were able to lose 1kg or more per week for the first three weeks; and overall achieve three and a half times greater total weight loss than those who had a slower start to the 12-week program.
Lead CSIRO research scientist, Dr. Gilly Hendrie said structure, preparation and self-monitoring were the key characteristics demonstrated by most successful members—a set of tactics Australians can employ to kickstart their weight loss program as the warmer months begin.
According to the study, people who lost the most weight in the first three weeks and achieved longer term results on the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet, allowed themselves an average of two days to prepare for the program and used the online planning and self-monitoring tools 50 percent more than other users.
In those first weeks they weighed in almost twice per week, checked their meal plan and tracked the food in each meal three times a day. In fact, they used the online tools as much as six times a day in their first three weeks of the program.
Dr. Hendrie advised preparation was important.
"Allow two days to organize yourself before you start a weight loss program, including purchasing food and getting familiar with meal plans," Dr. Hendrie said.
"This sets you up for regular check-ins—we found the most successful weight loss occurred when people viewed their meal plans, used the food tracker, looked up foods every day and weighed in regularly to stay engaged and accountable. It's been a challenging time for Australians recently, with diet and wellbeing understandably taking a back-seat for some people. With this in mind, we are pleased to have the evidence that shows, with the right framework, tactics and attitude, people can set themselves up for effective weight loss."
To help Australians achieve greater weight loss, the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet has introduced a new enhancement, the Interactive Start Strong Guide, which provides step-by-step instructions for getting off to the best possible start on the scientifically proven 12-week program.
"At a time when we are using digital platforms more than ever, the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet provides a strong framework to support this early and sustained weight loss—whilst also fitting into the habits of our new normal," Dr. Hendrie said.