Perception is not always reality. When I ask my weight loss clients whether they track their food intake, they often roll their eyes and tell me that it’s too tedious of a task to undertake and they dread having to do it. But when push comes to shove, to be successful with weight loss, self-monitoring is the most promising indicator.
A recent study found that the time needed to document total food intake is less than 15 minutes per day. In addition, the time it takes to document is less important than the frequency of monitoring. In an online behavioral weight loss program, the participants that were most successful after 6 months of recording their food intake took an average of 14.6 minutes daily on the activity. Individuals in the study monitored the fat and calories in foods and beverages consumed, as well as portion sizes and methods of preparation. The study done by researchers at the University of South Carolina and University of Vermont is the first to define the time required to self-monitor in individuals that lose weight successfully.
By Lisa Andrews, MEd, RD, LDJune 2019 Nutrition News