Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- When you’re trying to lose weight, you may think the hardest part is dropping the pounds, but every diet study ever done says keeping it off is even harder.
A new study shows you have a much better chance of keeping the weight off if you learn how to do it before you start your diet.
Studies show that within the first year after stopping a diet program, people put back on 30 to 50 percent of the weight lost.
Researchers wanted to know if learning how to maintain weight before starting a diet would make a difference.
They studied 267 overweight and obese women who met for 28 weeks. One group spent the first eight weeks learning maintenance skills. The other group focused on losing weight and spent the last eight weeks learning how to keep it off.
At the end of the 28-week program, women in both groups had lost about 17 pounds.
One year later, the maintenance-first group had regained an average of just three pounds, while the women who lost the weight first regained seven.
So you may be more successful maintaining that new look if you know how to keep the pounds off before you start losing.