Body Tip Trying to help a loved one lose weight? Placing a bet on her behalf could lead to greater success.

weight loss exercise class
weight loss exercise class (Photo credit: ninahale)

Money can motivate people to do lots of things, including, as it turns out, lose weight. So if someone you care about needs to shed some unwanted pounds, and has tried to do so unsuccessfully, consider placing a wager on his or her behalf. A Mayo Clinic study followed 100 people ages 18 to 63 who were paid $20 a month to lose weight. These participants were more likely to meet their weight loss goals than participants who had to pay out $20 to a “bonus” pool if they didn’t succeed. The group members who were paid to lose weight were almost four times as successful, losing 9.08 pounds on average, compared to 2.34 pounds for the participants who were not compensated. Financial incentives improve compliance and adherence, according to the researchers. If you are motivated to lose weight, consider joining a program where people publicly commit to goals and ask friends for support. If you create a “commitment contract” through offline weight loss programs or at an online goal-setting website, you may be more successful.


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