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Want to lose weight? Try the WEEKDAY diet (because we all gain weight on the …

  • Just as there are sleep cycles, there are also weight loss cycles
  • U.S. researchers found it’s what we eat during the week – and not just weekend binges – that affects our weight
  • By cutting back Monday to Friday, weekend excess can be OK, they say
  • We tend to begin losing weight on Tuesday and gaining it on Friday night

Anna Hodgekiss

12:02 EST, 4 February 2014


12:21 EST, 4 February 2014

If you feel bad about what you ate on the weekend, then don’t beat yourself up too much.

Instead, you’re better off focusing on eating healthy lunches and dinners during the week.

That’s because the majority of us pile on the weight at the weekends and shed pounds during the working week, according to new research.

Guilt-free living: By following the weekday diet, we can enjoy weekend excess such as hamburgers

For just as there are sleep cycles, there are also weight loss cycles, the study has found.

The researchers, at New York’s Cornell University, found that almost everyone loses weight on weekdays and gains weight on weekends.

But, crucially, what separates the slim from the heavy isn’t how much more they gain on weekends – it is how much they lose during the weekdays.

The study, led by Dr Brian Wansink, looked into the impact that the seven-day cycle we live by has on weight.

Eighty adults participated in the study, ranging in age from 25 to 62 years old. These people were classed as either weight losers (-3 per cent weight loss), weight gainers (+1 per cent weight gain), or weight maintainers (-3 per cent to 1 per cent weight change).

Austerity weekdays: Researchers found it's what we eat during the week - and not just weekend binges - that affects our weight

Austerity weekdays: Researchers found it’s what we eat during the week – and not just weekend binges – that affects our weight

These people were asked to weigh themselves before breakfast. Only weight measurements that were taken over at least seven consecutive days were included in the analysis.

The main objective of the study was to observe whether weight fluctuation is dependent on the days of the week.

Weekly weight patterns were then analysed across the three groups: weight losers, weight gainers and weight maintainers.

The results revealed a clear pattern in weekly weight fluctuation. People weighed more on Sundays and Mondays, with their weight steadily decreasing during the weekdays – reaching the lowest point on Friday.

Unexpectedly, the researchers found a difference between weight losers and weight gainers in these fluctuation patterns.

People who lost weight did so by cutting back on calories straight after the weekend and continuing so until Friday.

Meanwhile those who didn’t lose weight had no clear decrease during weekdays.

The researchers add that ‘successful weight control is more likely to happen and for the long run if one is not too strict with one’s diet but allows for short-term splurges’.

The study was published in the journal Obesity Facts and in conjunction with researchers from the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Tampere University of Technology.

Comments (68)

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1 hour ago

Diets are not news. Can’t we have a special diet section for those that fall for all that drivel and have real news?



1 hour ago

Well, I for one think this is worth considering. That way I can tell myself I’m all right follow good eating habits during week


sunderland, United Kingdom,

1 hour ago

its simple.. eat in moderation, drink plenty water and go for a half hour walk everyday….what’s so hard about that… come weekend I will drink and eat take away, I work hard during week but make effort to not pig out so I can treat myself on a weekend when off and I never put weight on!! some people just eat and eat and wonder why they getting fat…… moment on lips lifetime on the hips



1 hour ago

That’s what Iv been doing since eating properly this year. I want to loose 1lb a week so if ur realistic it can work. It’s Working for me and I REALLY look forward to the weekend now


Sloth Palace,

1 hour ago

Think about it. this Is exactly the same as that 5:2 diet you were on about.

Its not hard…. if you eat fewer calories than you burn then you lose weight!

only my opinion,

the land of free will,

1 hour ago

I lost 3 and a half stone doing this 2 years ago in 5 months. everyone deserves a treat and doing it this way keeps the weight off for longer



1 hour ago

I’ve got an idea. Eat less if you want to stop putting on weight.


Florida, United States,

2 hours ago

the photo of that woman with that huge mouth engulfing the burger is disgusting.


birmingham, United Kingdom,

2 hours ago

That’s because most of us have boring desk jobs these days and it’s so easy to snack on rubbish without burning it off.



2 hours ago

Isn’t this just another version of the 5:2 diet the DM is obsessed with??

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