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Britons stuck in yo-yo dieting cycle

July 12, 2013 - Health & Nutrition

yoyo diet_SmallA new study has revealed that the average British adult could spend 32 years of their life on a diet*, but a constant cycle of dieting and binge-eating won’t help you lose weight in the long-term, and is a recipe for health disasters.

In a study commissioned by Del Monte Naturally Light, over 4,000 people were asked about their dieting habits. Three quarters of the adult population admitted they are unhappy with their weight and yo-yo diet every year. The average amount of time spent on a diet was 6.29 months of the year.

Among the British population, just one in four people (24%) are happy with their current weight; and only 4% think they need to gain weight. In contrast, 70% of people would like to lose weight, even if only a few pounds (46%) with a quarter of these (24%) feeling like they have a lot of weight to shift.

Men are slightly more content with their weight than women, however the research shows that a significant proportion of them also wish to slim down (64%) compared to 76% of women.

Dieters cited a love of food and a lack of willpower as the main reasons for struggling to keep to a diet.

Sadly, this yo-yo dieting approach can play havoc with your digestive system, causing long-term health problems – and crucially, most diets don’t address your psychological relationship with food. This means that when the diet is over, it’s oh so easy to slip back into bad habits and put the weight back on.

Changing your attitude to food
‘It’s important to change the way you think if you want to keep the weight off long-term,’ explained Professor Iain Broom, Medical Director of LighterLife.

‘If you go back to eating and doing what you did before you lost weight, you will go back to weighing the same.

‘No other programme focuses on behaviour change like LighterLife. The cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and transactional analysis (TA) techniques help clients gain an understanding of why the weight was gained and the group work means they have support and identification with other people. They change the way they think and therefore the whole way they relate to food.

‘The group work is also important once weight loss is achieved. They can get on-going support to help them maintain their weight, which means they’re far less likely to put it back on’.

So, if you’re looking for a way to change your relationship with food for the long-term – and break that cycle of yo-yo dieting, give LighterLife a try.

For more information about how LighterLife can help you lose weight (and keep it off), visit our website www.lighterlife.com or call us on 0800 2 988 988.


*current life expectancy in the UK is 80.75. Figure is based on UK adults dieting from the ages of 18 – 80.75, 6.29 months every year.