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Can Twitter Help You Lose Weight?

If you’re anything like 80% of people, you are probably thinking about losing weight and getting healthier in 2013. If so, you might be surprised to find out that something that can help you lose weight is Twitter.

Yes, really.

Mashable points out that a new study shows that using Twitter while trying to lose weight keeps you accountable and gives you instant support. The study, published in the journal Translational Behavioral Medicine by researchers from the University of South Carolina, states:

“As part of a behavior weight loss program, engagement in a social network, such as Twitter, mainly provides informational social support, which may assist with weight loss.”

Brie Turner-McGrievy, one of the researchers on the project said, “Traditional behavioral weight loss interventions generally provide social support through weekly, face-to-face group meetings. While we know this is effective, it is costly and can create a high degree of burden on participants,” she said. “Providing group support through online social networks can be a low cost way to reach a large number of people who are interested in achieving a healthy weight.”

This isn’t a big surprise; online support groups are all over Twitter, including well-known groups in the mom blogging community Mamavation and FitFluential. If you’re trying to lose weight, connecting to other people doing the same can give you a virtual buddy system that can help keep you on track.

What do you think? Would you use Twitter to get in shape or lose weight?

For more on the study, you can read this article on the University of Carolina site, or tackle the study itself here.

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