Better mood and more sex: Continuous diet with normal weight brings plus in quality of life
Especially people who have a little too much on their hips are trying to get rid of extra pounds with special nutritional programs. As researchers have now found out, even those with normal weight benefit from a diet. They saw a significant increase in quality of life.
Overweight people in particular want to lose weight
Now that it is getting significantly warmer, thoughts often circle around the early summer. Although people with normal weight don't actually have to lose weight, they often think about how they can save calories every day in order to be prepared for the bathing season. Some nutritional programs promise to get to the beach in just eight weeks. As researchers at Harvard University reported a few months ago, diets are of little use, but it makes sense to include healthy foods in your daily diet. Those who want to reduce their weight may be able to give new insights from the USA a motivation boost. Scientists have found there that a permanent diet brings a plus in quality of life.
People with normal weight benefit from a permanent diet
The magazine "Spiegel Online" reports in a recent article about an experiment in the USA, which shows that a permanent diet also makes normal and slightly overweight people more relaxed and combats a bad mood. However, this requires months of persistence, as the researchers write in the journal “Jama Internal Medicine”. The team led by Corby K. Martin from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center selected 218 study participants with an average age of 38 years for the study. All subjects were healthy at the time, their body mass index (BMI) was on average at the limit of 25 from normal to overweight, and none suffered from obesity. Two thirds of the participants were divided into a diet group. Within the two-year experiment, they should reduce their daily calorie intake by 25 percent. The remaining third - the control group - was allowed to continue eating as usual.
Information about sleep quality, quality of life and sexual activity
The study participants had to fill out questionnaires at the beginning of the examination as well as after 12 and 24 months and reported on their sleep quality, quality of life, sexual activity and mood. Even before the study, the scientists knew that overweight people benefit from fewer calories. However, it had not previously been thoroughly investigated whether this also applies to normal-weight or somewhat fat, healthy people. It was feared in part that the mood could decrease due to the strict nutritional requirements.
Weight loss and better mood
A quarter (25 percent) did not manage to reduce calories, but overall the diet group had reduced their calorie intake by 15 percent after one year, but still by 12 percent after 24 months. The diet participants lost an average of 7.6 kg within the two years, the members of the control group only 0.5 kg. According to the researchers, the quality of life, which was high in both groups, also showed positive dietary effects. As reported by "Spiegel", the mood in the non-diet group deteriorated on average over the two years, while it improved among the participants on a diet. The dieters also showed an increase in tension.
More desire for sex
In addition, the researchers found a small positive effect on the desire for sex and partnership after 24 months. The participants in the diet group reported an improvement on this point. The most significant effect was, however, in the general state of health. While the control group declined somewhat in the two years, the result in the diet group improved very significantly. Furthermore, men on a permanent diet reported a slightly lower sexual excitability - despite more desire for sex. No significant differences were documented for many other factors examined, such as sleep quality.
Quality of life improved
"We know that overweight people who lose weight experience improvements in the quality of life, but it was not clear whether similar benefits would occur in normal and slightly overweight people," lead author Corby K. Martin told Reuters. According to Martin, some experts doubted that calorie reduction could have a positive effect on people with normal weight. "However, we found that calorie restriction over two years and the loss of about ten percent of body weight improved the quality of life of the normal-weight and slightly overweight study participants." According to "Spiegel", the study also has a few weaknesses. For example, the fact that the diet group had met scientists more often could have contributed to their feeling of better health. (ad)