x
Breaking News
More () »

WZDX

Study shows over 75% of people experiencing weight gain during pandemic

A new study shows more people are gaining weight during the pandemic. We spoke to a counselor, who says stress and major life changes can impact our health.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. —

A new study shows more people are gaining weight during the pandemic. 

A survey by OnePoll on behalf of Nutrisystem, found that 76 percent of respondents shared they’ve gained up to 16 pounds during their time in self-isolation.

WATCH: WHAT IS THE "QUARANTINE FIFTEEN" AND WHY SHOULD YOU STOP STRESSING OVER THE SCALE?

WATCH: WHAT IS PANDEMIC FATIGUE AND HOW COULD IT BE IMPACTING YOU

The survey of 2,000 Americans found 63 percent of people are now focusing their efforts on achieving a "post-quarantine" body instead of a “summer body”. 

Almost 70 percent of people say they’re snacking out of boredom, and 40 percent of people say inconsistent eating schedules have led to weight gain during the pandemic.

We spoke to a counselor about these numbers, and she says that the study isn’t surprising, considering just how much stress and major changes can impact our health. 

Monretta Vega, a counselor with Huntsville Psychotherapy and Counseling Services, says “When we are in stressful situations throughout our lives, but definitely during this time, you can increase what you intake because it makes us feel a little bit better.” 

Counselor Vega adds, that although it may feel good at the time, unhealthy eating habits can lead to another set of issues. And a major shift in eating habits could stem from excessive stress, anxiety or depression. Those same conditions could also lead someone to eat less or stop eating altogether. 

It's very important to look for any changes in eating habits, lack of physical activity, feelings of lethargy and more. If you need help, seek resources. 

She adds some tips like drinking a glass or water prior to a meal to ensure you're hydrated before eating, making sure you spend some time walking outside everyday, and making sure you have healthy snack options at home will help you stay healthy while staying home. 

RELATED: App aims to help those with mental health during COVID-19

RELATED: Medical groups call racism a public health issue

RELATED: What is pandemic fatigue? And how could it be affecting you?

RELATED: Caring for your loved ones with COVID-19 at home

Here's a news copy of the survey provided by SWNS Staff: 

By SWNS Staff 

Americans have lost all hope of getting a summer body this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new research.

The survey of 2,000 Americans found 63% are now focusing their efforts on achieving a post-quarantine body instead.

Results found these long days in lockdown may have been a wake-up call for respondents, as 64% said they’ve felt an increased desire to eat healthier.

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Nutrisystem, the survey revealed 63% of those polled said they’ve now placed more of a priority on improving their diet.

As the days start to blur together during lockdown, 75% of respondents were in agreement that they’re starting to feel like they’re living the same day over and over again.

And as each day starts to feel like the last, 46% of those polled shared they’ve only been wearing sweatpants or yoga pants during quarantine – and a further 28% can’t even remember the last time they wore pants.

Seventy-four percent of respondents were also in agreement that when their daily routines are thrown off, it’s a source of stress and anxiety for them.

Inconsistent daily routines aren’t the only thing causing respondents stress, however; 76% of those surveyed have experienced increased stress because they’re snacking more.

In fact, four in 10 respondents shared their eating schedules have become increasingly inconsistent and six in 10 shared their diets were derailed upon entering self-isolation.

Seventy-six percent of respondents shared they’ve gained up to 16lbs during their time in self-isolation.

These poor eating habits might be all connected to boredom while stuck inside, as 69% of those polled said they tend to start snacking because they have nothing else to do.

With sixty-five percent of respondents sharing they’ve been primarily eating comfort foods while sheltering in place, it’s no wonder a further 33% of those surveyed said their top struggle during lockdown has been eating healthy.

“So many people think that eating healthier means giving up your favorite comfort foods, and that is completely untrue,” said Courtney McCormick, corporate dietitian at Nutrisystem.

“That’s why programs like Nutrisystem exist, so you can achieve your weight loss goals without sacrificing favorites like burgers or mac and cheese. It’s also key to have healthy snacks like fruit and veggies on hand for when a snack craving strikes.”  

Forty-two percent of respondents said one of their top struggles during lockdown is maintaining a consistent eating schedule.

Aside from the common struggles of inconsistent sleep schedules and a lack of physical activity, 41% of respondents also shared they’ve been struggling to maintain a positive attitude during their time in quarantine.

It’s no surprise then, that the top priority for respondents was improving their outlook on life by focusing on the positive in their lives.

“Maintaining a positive mindset is so important when you’re trying to live a healthier lifestyle,” said McCormick. “That means making positive thinking and mindfulness a habit as you work towards your goals.”

TOP PRIORITIES DURING SELF-ISOLATION
Focusing on the positive parts of their life - 49%
Eating healthier - 45%
Being more physically active - 45%
Improving their mental health - 44%
Losing weight - 33%
Being more productive while working from home - 27%

TOP STRUGGLES OF SELF-ISOLATION
Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule - 44%
Staying physically active - 42%
Maintaining a consistent eating schedule - 42%
Maintaining a positive attitude - 41%
Staying motivated while working from home - 34%
Eating healthy - 33%