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More than one thousand real women from across the country took part in the Special K study titled,“Positivity and Weight Management: A Look at the Gains” to share their weight management behaviors, attitudes and experiences. In addition to the significant differences in reported rates of weight management success between women who think positively and those who think negatively, the study also revealed the following findings:
“This research is a compelling reminder of the power of thoughts to influence behavior,” said Dr. Engeln, who has published studies that explore women’s body image issues. “Shifting to a more positive way of thinking about yourself and about weight management can pay off. When women engage in negative thinking about their bodies, the negative thinking can turn into unhealthy habits. This research by Special K suggests the opposite is also true. Thinking positively can have measurable benefits. It makes sense for women to ask themselves, ‘What will I gain when I lose?’”
The study also revealed that when it comes to avoiding weight gain, a common challenge during the holiday season, not only did women who think positively about their weight management report that they were more successful in losing or maintaining their weight, they were actually eight times less likely to report having gained weight than women who think negatively.
“What’s so compelling for me about this research is that it demonstrates how important one’s attitude is for achieving real success with weight management — it isn’t just about what you eat and how much you exercise, but how you look and feel about yourself, too,” said Dr. Bazilian. “This new insight will lend scientific credibility and enhance my current work in helping women find success with their health and weight goals by encouraging them to focus on the positive – and appreciating what the body is really capable of doing.”