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People And Pets Succeed In Fighting Obesity And Diabetes
Posted: Tuesday, November 30, 2004
Results of the first-ever, 12-month combined people and pet weight management study were presented today at the North American Association for the Study of Obesity's (NAASO's) Annual Scientific Meeting. The People and Pets Exercising Together (P-PET) study by Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Hill's Pet Nutrition, the maker of Science Diet® and Prescription Diet® brand pet foods, demonstrates people and their pets are both more successful in staying with a weight loss program when they exercise together.
The P-PET program is proven to be a safe, effective, and enjoyable way for people and pets to lose weight and maintain weight loss. By participating in a weight loss program with your pet, you can improve the quality of life for you and your pet through increased exercise, a strengthened human-animal bond, and a fun and motivating way to trim down together.
Dr. Robert Kushner, Medical Director, Wellness Institute, Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Professor of Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine explains, "We devised a state-of-the-art weight management program based on previous studies that show that people are more effective at losing weight and maintaining that weight loss when they do it with a friend or companion. The P-PET study proves that a faithful pet provides effective social support for losing weight and maintaining weight for up to one year."
The 12-month P-PET study consisted of three groups of overweight participants: a dog/owner group (36 people and their dogs), a dog-only group (53 dogs), and a people-only group (56 people).
Dr. Jennifer Jellison, DVM, Practicing Veterinarian Minerva Park Veterinary Clinic, Columbus, Ohio, explains, "People love their pets and don't want to let them down. They also want their pets to live long and healthy lives. Obesity contributes to a shortened life span, heart disease, diabetes, and osteoarthritis in pets, so keeping your pet at a healthy weight is one of the ways that pet owners can strengthen the human-animal bond and help ensure that their beloved pets will be around for years to come."
Over the course of the 12-month study, both people and dogs lost weight and kept it off: people lost an average of 11 pounds (approximately 5 percent of their initial body weight) and dogs lost an average of 12 pounds (approximately 15.6 percent of their initial body weight). The maximum weight loss for dogs was 35 pounds; for people, the maximum loss was 51 pounds. Participants gained the confidence and the motivation to stick to a specific diet and exercise strategies and succeed at weight loss, not just for the moment but for the long term.
"People really enjoy spending time with their dogs, and our P-PET study demonstrates that dogs provide the companionship, social support, and motivation to stick with the program until the pounds come off and stay off," says Dr. Kushner. "This just might be the ultimate buddy system for winning the battle of the bulge!"
You've heard about Atkins®, The Zone®, and the South Beach Diet®, but maybe you should consult with your dog about your next weight loss endeavor! Check with your doctor and veterinarian before launching any weight loss and exercise plan. For top tips from the experts on how you and your pet can lose weight, visit
Source: Diabetes In Control.com.
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