Losing weight online can be a daunting task.
For some people, it can be an opportunity to lose a significant amount of weight.
For others, it is a way to gain more muscle and/or size.
And for some people it’s a way for them to improve their health and/of course, their lifestyle.
But in a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers have found that, for some individuals, losing weight online has the potential to boost their body mass index (BMI) and even to help them lose weight.
“It seems to be possible to make an impact on the body’s fat-free mass,” said study author Marlene Zampieri, of the University of California, San Diego, and her colleagues.
In this study, the researchers examined the weight loss trajectories of more than 7,000 women who were obese and were either undergoing weight loss or who were following a low-calorie diet (LCD).
The study also included more than 2,000 men who were overweight or obese and who were also undergoing weight-loss therapy.
“This study shows that there is a small but measurable effect on body mass on a weight-free scale,” Zamprias team wrote.
This study was conducted using a non-invasive digital scale, and the researchers compared the results to data from the California-based Weight Loss Health Study (WLS).
In the WLS, a group of people with diabetes and obesity were randomly assigned to either a low or high-caloric diet for three weeks, and participants followed the diet for 12 weeks.
After three weeks on the low-carb diet, participants on the high-carbohydrate diet lost an average of 11.4 kilograms of body weight, or 1.6 kg per week, compared to 5.3 kilograms of weight loss on the diet of the other two groups.
The researchers found that while losing weight via the diet resulted in similar body weight gains over the course of the study, participants who followed the high calorie diet lost a larger percentage of body fat than those who followed a low calorie diet.
“The study shows weight loss from a low carbohydrate diet can lead to a higher body fat percentage,” Zumprias said.
“When we add this into the equation, there are potential health benefits from weight loss.”
Zampieri and her team also found that the weight-management strategies that were most effective in preventing weight gain via the low calorie and high carbohydrate diets were both effective at increasing fat-loss results.
The results were consistent across people, with the most common weight-maintenance strategies being exercise, weight loss, and dieting.
Weight loss via the dietary intervention and the low carb and high calorie interventions had similar effects on body fat percentages, the study authors wrote.
They noted that the intervention group had a lower BMI and more weight loss than the low fat and high fat groups, and they also had similar weight loss outcomes.
The authors of the paper said the findings may also help people who are overweight or have diabetes and are also trying to lose body fat.
“One of the ways that the high fat diet can be effective is to lower the insulin response to high-fat foods,” Ziprias told Al Jazeera.
“Another is to decrease energy intake to lower your hunger and get you to eat more.”