Most Weight Gain Occurs on Weekends

Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 03:48 PM

By Erika Schwartz, M.D

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How much you weigh may depend on the day of the week you step on the scale. That’s the upshot of new research out of Cornell University that finds most people lose weight on weekdays, but pack on the pounds over the weekend, when they are not working and have more time to go out and eat.
 
But lead researcher Brian Wansink, M.D., says the key factor in obesity isn’t how much more people gain on weekends, but how much they lose during the week.
 
For the study, Dr. Wansink tracked weekly weight fluctuations in 80 people, ranging in age from 25 to 62 years old, who were asked to weigh themselves after waking up each day over a period of time lasting up to 10 months.
 
The results consistently showed most people weighed more after weekends (Sunday and Monday) and lost weight during the weekdays — reaching the lowest levels on Friday.
 
The researchers also noted those who lost weight over the course of the study tended to drop more pounds during the week than they gained on the weekends than those who gained weight over time.
 
The findings suggest successful weight control is more likely to happen when people allow for occasional weekend food splurges, but compensate by following a more sensible diet most other days.

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Erika Schwartz, M.D., is a leading national expert in wellness, disease prevention, and bioidentical hormone therapies. She is author of Dr. Erika’s Healthy Balance newsletter.
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