Read Your Way to Weight Loss

With scrumptious holiday meals just around the corner, now is the perfect time to add a new no-sweat twist to your exercise program. Here's how.

Woman reading nutrition label

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Read your way to weight loss: Start checking food labels, especially before purchasing a product for the first time.

Guidelines for food labels have gotten a bad rap in recent years, but a new study published in the Journal of Consumer Affairs suggests that reading nutritional labels can lead to weight loss, especially for women age 35+.

Data analysis by Washington State University researcher Dr. Bidisha Mandal on weight loss and whether consumers read food labels the first time they purchased a product revealed:

  • Women are more likely than men to read food labels and to lose weight.
  • Label readers who don’t exercise are more likely to lose weight than exercisers who don’t read labels.
  • People who continue to read labels and add exercise to their lifestyle are more likely to lose weight than those who stop reading labels and start exercising.

The message?

Exercise and making informed decisions about the foods you eat is key to a healthy weight. If you don’t exercise, start. And everyone should pay attention to the Nutrition Facts labels on foods purchased at the market.

Ask about nutritional information on the foods you eat away from home, too. The health care reform bill passed last spring calls for easier access to nutritional information on foods sold in restaurants, retail food establishments, and vending machines. Consumers deserve, and should demand, it.


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