Overeating, even for a brief period, might contribute to long-term weight gain. In a study published in the journal Nutrition & Metabolism, researchers have highlighted the adverse effects of binge eating, even for a short period.Short term overeating prevents long term weight loss.
Researchers have observed that hyper-alimentation, which is the scientific term for overeating, for a short period can slow down weight loss in the near future. It could increase the body weight and fat reserve even in people with normal body mass in the long run.
In the Linkoping University study, researchers had tracked the affect of short-term binge eating on the health of eighteen men and women. The average age of the participants in the study was 26 years.
The average body weight of the participants was 149 pounds. Twenty per cent of the body weight of the participants comprised of fat mass. Before the study, the participants’ daily average calorie intake was 2,270 calories.
During the course of the study, the participants increased their daily calorie intake to almost 4000 calories per day. They remained on the high calorie diet for four weeks. During the overeating phase, the physical activities of the participants were limited to walking less than 2.5 miles a day.
The food items in the binge-eating period comprised largely of unhealthy fast foods such as French fries, pizza and hamburger. Researchers compared changes in the body weight of the binge eaters with a group of eighteen people who avoided short-term overeating.
Researchers found that a month after binge eating, the average weight of binge eaters increased by fourteen pounds and they gained 4 per cent excess fat mass. After returning to the normal diet, within 6 months, the short-term binge eaters had lost almost fifty per cent of the weight they had gained by overeating.
After a year, the body weight of the short-term binge eaters were still higher than their body weights recorded before the binge-eating period. After 2 ½ years, researchers observed that the short-term binge eaters had gained twenty pounds excess weight, whereas the non-binge eaters had retained their normal body weight.
Researchers have concluded that binge eating, even for a short period, should be avoided. Therefore, to prevent weight gain, you should combine moderate calorie intake with regular physical activities.