Weight loss easier when you get paid for it

By Julie Steenhuysen

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Losing weight is easier when there is money on the line, U.S. researchers said on Tuesday.

They said weight-loss programs that reward people with money — and remind them of the cash they stand to lose if they fail — provided a powerful incentive to lose weight compared with more conventional approaches.

Dr. Kevin Volpp of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine was looking for an effective way to treat obesity, a growing problem that carries serious health risks.

He said many weight-loss programs fail because people are being asked to make sacrifices now for rewards in the future.

“We wanted to create a reward system which gave them rewards in the present,” said Volpp, whose study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Volpp and colleagues studied two kinds of incentive programs for weight loss. One was a lottery-based design in which participants played a lottery and were allowed to collect their winnings if they met their weight-loss target.

The lotteries were running daily, and people were told what their winnings would have been if they had met their weight-loss target.

“There is a very strong sense of loss aversion,” the theory that people are highly motivated to avoid losses, Volpp said in a telephone interview.

“The idea was to create a mechanism where loss aversion would help drive people’s motivation,” he said.

The other was a deposit contract, in which participants invested a small amount of their own money — between 1 cent and $3 per day — which they would lose at the end of the month if they failed to reach their goals. People in this group also got a bonus if they met their goal.

“You only received your reward at the end of the month if your weight was below the stated goal for the month,” Volpp said.

The researchers assigned 57 obese but otherwise healthy people to one of these two groups or a control group, in which people were simply weighed at the end of each month. All were aiming to lose 16 pounds (7.26 kg) by the end of four months.

People in the incentive groups lost far more weight than those who got no pay for their efforts, with about half of the participants in each group meeting their weight loss goals.

People in the lottery program earned a total of $378.49 and lost about 13 pounds (5.9 kg), while people in the deposit group got $272.80 and lost 14 pounds (6.35 kg).

Those in the control group, who were merely rewarded by better-fitting jeans, lost about 4 pounds after four months.  Continued…

Source

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Related Posts:


There are 2 main avenues you can take with regards to fast weight loss programs. Believe it or not, you need to identify which one you are going to follow in order to successfully shed those extra pounds you are currently dragging around. These are two very obvious avenues. Yet many people fail to (or deny)

Full Post: Fast Weight Loss Programs - 2 Very Different Paths to Success For Quick Weight Loss
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Because a diet success is defined as one in which the weight is still gone 12 months following the attainment of the goal, finding ways to ensure the best weight loss practices is an ongoing concern. Sometimes it takes several tries to actually lose the weight and reach the desired goals, but if you then

Full Post: 4 Best Weight Loss Tips - Only For People Anxious to Keep the Pounds Off
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Losing weight is always hard and you want to do it as fast as possible, but how fast can it really be? For instance, is it possible to lose 10 pounds in a day? The answer to that question is a resounding no. Losing 10 lbs in 1 day is impossible and if you stumble upon

Full Post: How to Lose 10 Pounds in a Day
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When it comes to fat loss programs I have tried them all. I have been on every Atkins, south beach, burn fat, gain muscle diet you can think of that promises to teach you how to lose weight fast. You know what I got from them? Nothing but a body that was in the same

Full Post: How to Lose Weight Fast - Shock Your Metabolism and Control Your Figure
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It’s the question everybody who is either overweight or obese asks is - what’s the best way to lose weight? It’s an understandable question because there are so many different diets and weight programs to choose from. Will it be ‘low carb’ or ‘low fat’, GI, Atkins or Cabbage - it is all very confusing. What

Full Post: Best Way to Lose Weight - Start Thinking About Change

Site Navigation

Most Read

Search