Washington: If you`ve been trying to lose weight and suspect your body is working against you, you may indeed be right.
"When obese people reduce their food intake too drastically, their bodies appear to resist their weight loss efforts," said Gregory G. Freund, professor at the University of Illinois College of Medicine.
"They may have to work harder and go slower in order to outsmart their brain chemistry," added Freund, who led the study.
He particularly cautioned against beginning a diet with a fast or cleansing day, which appears to trigger significant alterations in the immune system that work against weight loss.
"Take smaller steps to start your weight loss and keep it going," he said, the journal Obesity reports.
In the study, the scientist compared the effects of a short-term fast on two groups of mice. For 12 weeks, one group consumed a low-fat diet (10 percent fat); the other group was fed a high-fat diet (60 percent fat) and had become obese, according to an Illinois statement.
The mice were then made to fast for 24 hours. In that time, the leaner mice lost 18 percent of their body weight compared to five percent for the obese mice.
Beginning a weight loss programme in a depressed frame of mind and with decreased motivation doesn`t bode well for the diet`s success, Freund noted.