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Four simple rules for people who want to keep their weight in check

Posted January 29, 2017

What helps losing weight or at least not gaining anymore? One would think that it is actually not complicated, but still pretty difficult: you have to go to the gym, skip snacks and constantly control yourself. However, it is much easier than previously believed. A new research from the University of Tasmania outlined four main behaviours for limiting weight gain.

There are only four simple rules people need to follow in order to not gain weight. Image credit:, Public Domain

In other words, scientists managed to compile a very short list of advices to people who are worried about gaining weight. And they are quite easy to follow:

  1. eat your breakfast;
  2. limit takeaway food to no more than once per week;
  3. take at least 10,000 steps per day;
  4. watch no more than two hours of television per day.

How effective are these instructions? Scientists already tested them and found that those people, who did meet the guidelines, experienced a much lower weight gain than those who did not. But there are more good news.

So there were all kinds of people involved in the research. There were 1,155 participants (43% men, 57% women) and they were from different age groups as well. Scientists surveyed these people two times five years apart. As was mentioned before, they found that people who meet their guidelines experienced a much lower weight gain. But they also discovered that it is never too late to change. Those participants, who did not take those instructions into consideration the first time, but did five years later, still saw the same benefits. It means that guidelines work regardless of the time people start following them.

Usually, people gained around 2 kg of weight in this period of five years. However, the less they followed them, the more weight they gained. For example, person who met two of the requirements usually gained more than the one, who met all of them. Dr Kylie Smith, lead researcher, said: “Weight gain is common among young adults so here are four simple things to consider. Our analysis clearly shows the association between the behaviours and weight gain”. But was it hard for people to meet the guidelines?

Women did better than men. The most difficult advice to follow turned out to be 10,000 steps/day – most people did not achieve that. Other rules – eating breakfast, limiting takeaway food to no more than once per week and watching no more than two hours of television per day – turned out to be not too bad. Maybe it means that modern life style needs only one little change so that people could keep their weight in check?


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