Are you the kind of person who is always on a diet? Do you have a different weight every month of the year? Do you have a series of clothes of ascending sizes in your closet?
Then you are what we call a yoyo dieter.
Yoyo dieting or weight cycling describes the pattern of recurrent weight loss and gain over a long period of time so that the weight starts cycling or yo-yoing up and down. The weight range between which you cycle can be as small as 3 kilos or as big as 30 kilos.
Besides its unfavorable effects on one’s body image and self esteem, weight cycling has been linked to other health risks starting with altered body composition and metabolic rate and possible increased mortality rate.
It is thought that each time you lose weight, you are actually losing a combination of fat and muscle mass but when you regain it back, you only put on the fat back which reduces muscle mass and increases fat mass over time plus the effect of aging may result in slow metabolism and less efficiency of the following diet.
To stop the vicious cycle of weight loss and gain, you must STOP dieting and embrace small attainable goals of long term lifestyle changes. In other words, adopt healthy eating habits and increase your physical activity for most days of the week for the rest of your life. This will help you lose weight moderately and keep it off for good.