A new study shows that the odds are against the obese in the matter of losing weight. The research that was carried out by King’s College London claims that once someone has reached obesity, it will be exceedingly difficult for them to return to a normal weight level.
The study involved nearly 280,000 subjects as well as massive amounts of health records going further than 10 years back. It included people of different weights, not necessarily obese. The records were used to compare weight gains or losses between the subjects up to 2014, and the results are very worrying.
The findings show that only 1 in 210 men was able to go back to a normal body weight, with women having better chances with 1 in 124 managing to do so. Those included in the study tried to lose weight through exercises and diets.
Most of the subjects did manage to make significant progress for a few weeks but, unfortunately, they failed to maintain their loss of weight over longer periods of time. For those that suffer from obesity levels that seriously threaten their lives, the comeback to a normal weight is even less likely: only 1 out of 1290 men and 1 out of 700 women managed to do so.
It seems that regardless of the increased danger to their lives as a motivation, the more obese somebody is the harder they are to lose weight. Those that used medical procedures such as the gastric bypass surgery were excluded from the study. This could remain the only viable option for those with severe obesity, though it may be dangerous on its own.
The senior researcher of this study, Dr Alison Fildes, states that there is another solution. She states that while traditional methods such as physical activity are still important to helping people lose weight, the real problem is maintaining the loss over a long period of time.
She believes that public education on the matter should make people aware of how important maintaining any level (even a minor one) of weight loss is. In her opinion, current treatments are failing to help people that are truly obese in the long term.
While the results of this study are not going to inspire those who currently fight undesired weight, it may be of great use for doctors, showing that the current strategies are not working and a there is a dire need to different approaches.
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