Why It’s Easier To Lose 2 to 4 pounds Than It Is to Lose 3 Pounds
Let’s say for the moment that it’s true, as is put forth by researchers at Washington University in St. Louis, that it at least seems easier to lose two to four pounds than it is to lose three pounds. What’s up with that? The researchers report that a study that had people in a weight loss program set either “high-low range goals,” such as (two to four pounds) or single number goals (3 pounds), left those with more flexible goals feeling successful and eager to continue. At the end of the program, those with high-low range goals re-enrolled in the program at higher rates even though there was no difference in actual average weight loss across the two groups. In other studies, the researchers say, consumers exhibited similar behaviors with goals such as resisting tempting foods, solving puzzles or playing a grocery shopping game. Why? Because, the researchers say, a high-low range goal can offer the best of both worlds: The high end of the goal (lose four pounds) increases the challenge of the goal, while the low end (lose two pounds) increases its attainability. A single number goal (lose three pounds), on the other hand, may be perceived as a compromise and therefore both less challenging and less attainable. Read more from Washington University.