Weight affects a lot of people throughout their life, for various reasons, but keeping motivation to maintain it can become particularly difficult in a national lockdown.
A study, conducted by the University of Liverpool, looked into various aspects of eating and exercise, when it asked 2002 people to compare their behaviours from before, to during the first UK lockdown.
The online survey involved UK adults who were: 18 years old or above, fluent in English and a current UK resident.
The pandemic meant people were forced to stay inside for long periods, meaning they had more time to lead a healthier life – as the graph shows.
More than nine times the amount of people said they agreed, rather than disagreed, with the statement ‘I have had time to eat healthy’.
This is echoed by 20-year-old student, Gabby Dawson, who lost three stone in the first lockdown.
She described her want to lose weight sparking, once she reached her heaviest, at 17 stone: “I started to notice it majorly, and I would get out of breath walking up stairs.”
It has taken her around eight months to lose the weight, most of that being in the first lockdown, but she is still striving to reach her ten stone goal.
“I think mental health is a major factor which has been affected hugely by not being able to go outside and socialise as much”
Gabby Dawson, Student
Her weight loss got easier as restrictions eased and gyms reopened, achieving the loss through exercise and a calorie deficit.
She described her struggles with mental health, which made it harder for her to lose the weight, in a national lockdown: “I think mental health is a major factor which has been affected hugely by not being able to go outside and socialise as much.”
The Government have created a campaign, ‘Better Health’, which they hope will encourage the UK to make healthier choices to prevent them from getting serious illnesses, including COVID-19.
The campaign includes weight loss plans with healthier meals and exercise ideas, as part of the Government’s obesity strategy.
Gabby’s advice to people trying to lose weight is: “Don’t push yourself too hard…I just take one step at a time.”