A new study finds that money really does talk when it comes to motivating people to lose weight.
Researchers placed 100 volunteers who were considered obese into one of four weight-loss groups: two with financial incentives and two without. Over the course of a year, the individuals in the financial incentive groups were paid $20 a month if they lost four pounds. They had to cough up $20 if they didn't. Apparently, that was enough cash for many people to stay on course. Specifically, 62 percent of participants who received money stuck to the program, compared to only 26 percent of those who had no opportunity to receive financial incentives.
Participants who earned money monthly for losing weight or lost money when they didn't meet goals, dropped 9.1 pounds on average, compared with 2.3 pounds for those without cash incentives.
More research, however, is needed to see how effective bribing is when it comes to long-term weight loss and maintenance.
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