July 23, 2012
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The findings of a new study make it relatively easy to predict how much weight you will gain every four years of your life. The findings found independently associated indications of both weight gain and weight loss.

What you eat on a regular basis can contribute to how much weight you gain every four years.  Here is a list of foods and the amount of weight you will gain (and keep) or lose every four years:

  • Potato chips (1.69 lb weight gain every four years)
  • Potatoes (1.28 lb gain)
  • Sugar-sweetened beverages (1.00 lb gain)
  • Unprocessed red meats (0.95 lb gain)
  • Processed meats (0.93 lb gain)
  • Vegetables (-0.22 lb lost every four years)
  • Whole grains (-0.37 lb loss)
  • Fruits (-0.49 lb loss)
  • Nuts (-0.57 lb loss)
  • Yogurt (-0.82 lb loss)

Researchers found that life style can also result in weight gain or loss. For instance regular physical activity can result in a loss of 1.76 lbs every four year interval of your life.  Alcohol use can also add pounds. For every drink you have on an average day, you can expect to gain about 0.41 lbs every four years.  Television watching works the same way. For every hour you watch in a regular day, you will gain 0.31 lbs every four years.

Sleep, on the other hand is a strange one.  The right amount of sleep is between 6 and 8 hours a night. Any more or less sleep will also cause you to gain weight.

While these figures may seem too small to be significant, consider the plight of a person who regularly eats meat and potatoes for dinner, snacks on potato chips and sugar-sweetened sodas, has a couple of beers in the evening while they watch three hours of television. The net result is a gain of almost 7 pounds every four years.

A guy starting at 180 lbs at age 20, will weight almost 250 lbs by age 60. Sadly, this is a pretty typical scenario for many American men. If we are talking about a petite high school cheerleader who weighs only 100 lbs when she graduates, will top 150 lbs before she reaches age 50.

If either of these people would exercise regularly (reducing 1.76 lbs every four years) and eat yogurt, nuts and fruit instead of potato chips and soda, they will cut out most of that weight gain. If they then just skip one hour of television per night (or one beer), they will effectively eliminate that weight gain.

What you do on a regular basis has a long-term impact on your weight and health. Little things add up.

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