The troubling revelation of the before and after photo

“losing weight makes you healthier!”

My guess is you see this message everywhere, to some extent its accurate. We all know that from people with higher BMI (body mass index numbers) modest weight loss anywhere from 5-10% of bodyweight has shown not only to reduce cardiovascular disease risk and depression. But also improve mobility, increase sexual function and reduce markers of polycystic ovary syndrome.

The great news is that it means a dramatic weight loss transformation isn’t required to get meaningful health benefits during a weight loss program.

The bad news…. you probably dont think that this is true at all!

A study presented by UNSW Sydney in Australia took a group of over 600 people and asked them to look at before and after photos during a weight loss cycle of an individual.

Each participant was shown the “before” photo of a woman categorized as “obese” by scientists. however they were not all shown the same “after” photo so some were given…

  • the original photo showing no weight loss
  • a photo showing moderate weight loss
  • a photo showing a major transformation

the group was then asked to estimate the woman’s overall health?

what were the findings??

Well as you can probably guess the photo showing the drastic transformation was rated significantly healthier than the photo of no change, yet the moderate weight loss photo wasn’t rated any healthier than the original photo?

Based on this, the researchers speculate that the desire for major weight loss is what the group believe to be necessary to improve health yet major weight loss isn’t likely to happen this comes from the statistics that only 1 in 124 women categorized as obese would lose enough weight to achieve a normal BMI.

However the annual probability of that same woman to lose a modest amount of weight in the same annual year is 1 in 10 a much more reasonable number.

Takeaway point would be that aiming for a moderate amount of weight loss if your BMI is too high will see dramatic changes in your overall health, aiming for a moderate amount will also help with adherence making the journey easier

Diet culture creates high expectations, people are often lead to believe that weight loss comes faster and easier than expected, this often sets you up for failure and minimizes the worthiness of your efforts usually sending you backwards into the emotional eating behavior!

How to combat this…

  1. Regularly celebrate positive behavior and actions
  2. Focus on what matters – ask questions such as what does that number represent to you on the scale? how do you think you will feel when you’ve reached your target?
  3. Find your deeper purpose ask your self the 5 whys!
  4. Be happy your starting to make a change towards a happy healthier you!!

That’s all from me today I hope you like this post

Coach


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