Many people report that losing weight is easy, however it’s maintaining this weight loss that continually proves to be the difficult part. The fact is, however that many people are successful in losing weight, and keeping it off.
There is a prevailing belief that very few individuals can actually succeed in long-term weight loss. However, in 1994 The National Weight Control Registry was established, and it has now become the largest prospective investigation of long-term successful weight loss maintenance.

This registry gives us a valuable incite into what makes for successful weight loss, tracking the habits of over 5,000 individuals who have lost an average of 66 pounds, and have kept it off for an average of 5.5 years.
If you’ve been trying hard to maintain weight loss, the findings of this study should be an encouragement to you that you can succeed. The registry proves that there are many who have been successful in the past, and are still maintaining their weight loss today.

Here are some of the results from the registry:

  • 42% of participants said that weight maintenance is easier than weight loss.
  • 33% said that it is no more difficult to maintain than to lose.
  • 95% of participants said that losing weight improved their quality of life.
  • 90% reported that they had more energy and mobility, improved mood and increased self-confidence.
  • 86% said their physical health had improved.
  • 65% said their interaction with the opposite sex was better.
  • More than half said they did better in secular employment after losing weight.

How did they achieve weight loss success?

  • 45% of registry participants lost weight on their own.
  • The other 55% lost weight with the help of some type of program.
  • 98% of participants report that they modified their food intake in some way to lose weight.
  • 94% increased their physical activity, with the most frequently reported form of activity being walking.
  • Most participants report continuing to maintain a low calorie, low fat diet and doing high levels of activity in an attempt to maintain weight loss.
  • 78% eat breakfast every day.
  • 75% weigh them self at least once a week.
  • 62% watch less than 10 hours of TV per week.
  • 90% exercise, on average, about 1 hour per day.

One of the key points that has become apparent from the registry’s findings, is that the longer participants continued with a new behaviour, the easier maintenance became, with new behaviours eventually becoming habits.

What’s preventing you from making beneficial changes?

  • Are you ready to make changes? What barriers are preventing you? Make a list of everything you can think of, and beside each one, note down a reasonable solution.
  • What about your goals? Are they realistic? Have you made resolutions that really matter to you?
  • Do you have a helpful team of supporters around you? If you don’t, can you enlist the help of friends and family? Or, maybe you could join an exercise class in your locality?

There’s no doubt about it, weight loss does require effort and motivation. However, from the registry results, I’m sure you can see the benefits to be experienced from losing weight, and gain.