10 November 11 What Really Contributes to Weight Gain - Some Surprising Stats

Weight gain comes in many forms. Yes, each pound literally comes from consuming 3,500 calories above your RDI (recommended daily intake), which is based on your height, current weight and activity level. However, how those calories add up seems to be influenced by some surprising (and some not so surprising) factors. There have been a number of recent studies exploring what contributes to weight gain. We've compiled a few of the interesting ones for you.

Though the "Freshman 15" may not be entirely accurate, weight gain during college was the topic of a recent article in Social Science Quarterly. The study showed that no more than 10 percent of college students actually gain 15 pounds. The average was closer to just over three pounds. Interesting, this study cites that 25 percent of college freshmen actually lose weight their first year at school. However, on average, guys gain more than girls do their first year (1/3 more weight than girls to be exact).

With the holidays just around the corner, we're entering into the six-week season of stuffed turkeys, potato salads and stretchy pants. A recent study in Nutrition Review found that in the general population the weight people gain during the six-week holiday season accounts for an astounding 51 percent of all the weight they will gain that year. And if you're already overweight or obese, the percentage of weight one gained was greater than non-overweight individuals. The average gain in six weeks for overweight or obese individuals was 14% of their starting body weight.

Lastly, a study in the British Medical Journal considered what role job loss played in weight gain or loss for men. It found that when a man lost his job, he was twice as likely to experience major weight gain rather than major weight loss. Zoë Harcombe, author of The Obesity Epidemic, suggests that the weight gain is due to loss of purpose, self-esteem and income, in that order, and that job loss literally gives us more time to eat during the day.

Understanding what larger forces and life changes may be at play in weight gain may help put in perspective why you're gaining weight. And if you can determine some of these root causes you may be less likely to give up the fight to be healthy, especially if you know you can't immediately change those life circumstances. The trick is not to get down on yourself for gaining weight and closely monitoring your food intake with a calorie counter

Ryan Newhouse

Ryan Newhouse is the Marketing Director for MyNetDiary and writes for a variety of publications. He wants you to check out MyNetDiary on Instagram!

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Disclaimer: Please note that we cannot provide personalized advice and that the information provided does not constitute medical advice. If you are seeking medical advice, please visit a medical professional.

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Holidays / Parties/Winter Holiday Season Weight Gain/Unwanted Weight Gain

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