Last week, I told you a little about the NIH Look Ahead Study and how they found that people who participated in group weight loss programs lost significantly more weight than those who didn’t. This week I’m going to tell you a little bit more about that study. The NIH also found that there were three key factors that helped those people in the group weight loss program be so successful.

The three magic keys were: physical activity, attendance and meal replacements.

Let’s talk physical activity first. The study found that physical activity helped participants lose weight because they burned more calories. But that’s not the only reason physical activity helps you lose weight. They also found that participants build up more muscle, which helps improve your metabolism and regular physical activity improved participant’s moods which, in turn, helped them control their appetite.

Attendance was measured by how many treatment sessions (both individual and group sessions) the participants came to. They found that the more sessions a participant attended, the greater their weight loss. Researchers guessed that regular attendance strengthened a participants adherence to the program and their goals. Basically it keeps you accountable and helps you stay on track.

Meal replacements helped participants lose more weight mainly because they are portioned controlled. Researchers found that when participants opted to self select their diet instead of using meal replacements, they did not lose as much weight.

At Optimal Body Balance we focus on all three of these keys. We keep you accountable and on track with individual or group weight loss plans. We work with you to create exercise plans and provide resources for physical activity on your own or with a trainer. We write meal plans to suit your preferences and lifestyles that include smoothies as meal replacements. And we also do a whole lot more.