Weight Loss Before Wedding More Likely to Cause Weight Gain Later
A new research study published in the journal Body Image has determined that prospective brides who feel pressured to lose weight before their wedding are more likely to experience weight gain later on.
The study, by researchers at Flinders University in South Australia examined wedding-related weight changes in nearly 350 brides one month before their wedding, and six months later.
More than half the brides-to-be admitted to wanting to lose weight before their wedding. Nearly half of these, wished to lose an average of nine kilograms by their wedding date. The researchers noted that half the brides who wanted to lose weight before getting married, did actually lose weight – with most of them losing between one and two kilograms.
It would appear that the brides are responding to societal pressure to appear slim, equating thinness with beauty. While it is normal to want to look beautiful on your wedding day, the researchers suggest that the brides in their study are demonstrating a more troubling trend towards an artificial standard of perfection.
Following their weddings, many of the brides who had restricted their eating and undertaken a regular exercise schedule, stopped abruptly. The researchers commented that after the wedding, it was as though keeping fit and healthy didn’t matter to them anymore. This behavior pattern sets the stage for yo-yo dieting due to ongoing weight loss and gain, and long-term body image dissatisfaction.
Research indicates that healthy balanced meals and a regular exercise program are best for maintaining an ideal weight and level of fitness throughout one’s life. Losing weight for a specific occasion such as getting married is strongly discouraged.
The researchers add that women getting married should not be looking for perfection, and that a caring partner will love them for who they are, not for their weight.