Obesity is a very big problem in Western countries, particularly the United States. The cost of obesity is nearly $150 billion a year in the U.S.
There is an expert in the field, Dr. Mitesh Patel, who has looked at the types of incentives that help motivate people to lose weight. He even looked at whether financial incentives like tickets for a small lottery win would help people commit to losing weight. Dr. Patel is a behavioural expert and helps businesses improve their employees’ health.
We know that healthy people are more productive in the workplace. Companies are always looking for ways to motivate their employees to develop healthy habits.
If you give a person the chance of winning a $5 lottery every few days and make it a one in four or five chance, it doesn’t improve motivation to any great degree. If you increase the pot to $400 to $500 dollars but the chances of winning are less, there still isn’t much of a difference.
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However, people placed into random lotteries are more likely to hit the goal of 7000 steps per day. In fact, the number of people hitting that threshold went from 26% to 38% in response to a change in the lottery incentive.
It’s sad that people need bribes, incentives, and buddies to push themselves into a fitness program. I feel so sorry that there are so many people trapped in big bodies who don’t feel they have the power to do anything about it.
I’ve helped a lot of obese people come down to an average size. Unfortunately, many of them regained the weight. Some of them didn’t and were able to sustain the weight loss.
I think upbringing influences your body weight. Friends and social circles also impact your weight. If your friends and family tend to be active and eat healthily, you’ll be more prone to do that yourself. It’s hard to be slim when your family has a legacy of watching hours of television while eating pizza and drinking pop.