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Living Well In Yalobusha County

By Pamela Redwine
County Coordinator
MSU Extension Agent III

Perception is not always reality. When asking weight loss clients about whether they track their food intake or not, they often roll their eyes and say 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 six 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. Jean Harvey, chair of the Nutrition and Food Sciences Department at the University of Vermont and lead author of the study, notes that people state they hate self-monitoring as it is seen as “onerous and awful.”

This raised the question of how much self-monitoring a diet really takes, and the researchers found that it’s really not as much as people think. Let’s look more closely at the study — the dietary self-monitoring habits of 142 individuals in an online behavioral weight control trial. 

Subjects met for a weekly online session led by a registered dietitian for 24 weeks. They also logged their daily food intake online while recording how much time was used on the activity and how frequently they logged into the site. The most successful members of the group lost 10% of their body weight and spent an average of 23.2 minutes daily on self-monitoring in the first month of the study. 

The self-monitoring time dropped to 14.6 minutes by the end of the sixth month. Surprisingly, the more detailed and time-consuming the records were didn’t matter. The frequency of log-ins was most predictive of weight loss success, which confirms the results of most previous studies on self-monitoring. Researchers discovered that subjects that recorded intake three or more times per day with more consistency were most successful. 

The time spent on details did not seem to matter. Harvey believes that decreased time requirement for self-monitoring and auto-populated words and phrases when recording increased efficiency in recording food intake. He notes that the study showed setting behavioral targets is helpful for those trying to lose weight. Per Harvey, “We know people do better when they have the right expectations,” Harvey said. “We’ve been able to tell them that they should exercise 200 minutes per week. But when we asked them to write down all their foods, we could never say how long it would take. Now we can.”

 (Article Source: Communicating Food for Health, June Newsletter)

Save The Date

The Healthy You exercise class meets every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 9 a.m. at the Multi- Purpose Building in Coffeeville.  The class is free.  Just make sure to wear cool, comfortable clothes, good walking shoes and bring water to drink. 

The Sewing for Service group will meet at 10 a.m. on June 3 and June 17 at the Yalobusha County Extension office located inside the Multi-Purpose Building in Coffeeville.  This month participants will be working on baby blankets.  We have the supplies, we just need you to help sew.

The Looped with Love Crochet MHV Club will meet on Thursday, June 6th from 10 a.m. until noon. The group is led by volunteer Karol Jarman. You will need to bring the yarn of your choice and a crochet hook.  This is a great opportunity for beginners to learn how to crochet, as well as a good time for more experienced people to get ideas for new projects, or finish existing projects. We hope you will join us.

The Create Club will meet on Wednesday, June 12, 2019  from 10 a.m. until noon at the  Extension Office located inside the Multi-Purpose Building.  The program leader will be Pamela Redwine. The project will be a flag canvas made out of  buttons (see our Facebook page for a picture). Each crafter is responsible for their own supplies for this project: You will need canvas, size of your choice; burlap (to fit over canvas); a picture frame to fit canvas; and various sized and shaped red, white and blue buttons. Please call the Extension office at 675-2730  to reserve your spot.

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