A new study by University of Southern California revealed that Twitter users were successfully able to lose more weight on their nutritional plans than individuals who did not use the social media site. Ninety-six overweight individuals were chosen at random to participate in the six month study. Half of the participants were assigned to listen to two podcasts a week on diet and fitness topics and interact with other dieters on Twitter. They were instructed to discuss topics that they heard on the podcasts and announce their weight loss goals to other Twitter users. The other half of the participants in the USC study were instructed to listen to two podcasts a week for motivation. Both groups used apps to keep a record of their diet and fitness progress.
Researchers found at the end of the study that the Twitter users were able to successfully lose more weight than the participants who did not have a support group to interact with. Each Tweet that users posted about nutrition and exercise topics and goals led to the loss of half a pound.
People can use Twitter to lose weight by making a plan and publicizing their intentions on the site. As a result of publicizing nutritional and fitness goals, people are made accountable to other members. In addition, they can gain encouragement and support from their Twitter followers. The social media site can motivate individuals to continue their weightloss journey which is important when they feel like they have hit a plateau or sabotaged their nutritional goals.