Even Short Term Binge Eating Can Result in Long-Term effects on the Body

A recent experiment conducted by Swedish scientists has proved that those who take to binge eating are more prone to gain weight in their later years.

This study was conducted on 18 slim and healthy men and women in their early 20s. One group of 9 individuals was subjected to a diet which was high in fat and sugar for a month, whereas the second group continued to live their normal lifestyle.

Their weight was then recorded at the beginning of the experiment, after a month, after 6 months, and finally, after 2 and a half years.

Binge Eating from Daily Mail

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The results of this study, published in the Journal of Nutrition & Metabolism, revealed that the individual in the first group, who had been consuming about two meals consisting of junk foods each day, had gained about 14 pounds after a month.

After 6 months, these individuals had lost most of this excess weight but were still heavier than what they were before the start of the experiment. Finally, after 2 and half years, the first group was still about 7 pounds heavier. The individuals in the second group, however, had not gained any excess weight.

This indicates that contrary to what many people may believe, short-term binge eating can also induce more permanent changes in the physiology of individuals and make them more prone to weight gain.

Dr Asa Ernersson of the Linkoping University in Sweden opines that the change in weight in the first group of subjects was greater than expected and somehow believed that the body was conditioned to retain the fat longer than individuals in other groups.

Another factor that may have influenced the results of this study is that the subjects who agreed to consume junk foods may have developed a taste for the same and become less worried about their health.

This is considered to be the case with most Britons, who have been labeled as junk food addicts, even surpassing the junk-food eating population of America.

Taking the hint from this study, food manufactures have started giving more attention to the ingredients that go into their products. For instance, Mars bars will contain the healthier sunflower oil as opposed to palm fat, which was used earlier.

Although the calorie content in the new bar is slightly more than the previous version, it contains 15% less of the harmful saturated fat.

This study is the first of its kind in tracking the progress of weight gain in subjects after feeding them junk foods. Previous studies in this area have focused on weight gain seen with the advancing age of individuals.

So before you put that bar of chocolate or a spoonful of ice cream in your mouth, think about the consequences that could surface a decade later!