Most people think of peer pressure as this awful thing that makes teenagers drink beer, have sex, and make regrettable fashion choices, but it turns out there is a positive side to this type of influence. New research reveals that peer pressure combined with diet or exercise can be a force for good. Many health-conscious individuals have discovered that a “just say yes” approach to peer pressure and other social stress can help them get (and stay) fit. How? Let us count the ways…
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Choose Your Friends Wisely
Selecting the right wingman can make all the difference, especially when it comes to losing weight. According to a 2005 study from Brown Medical School and Dartmouth University, partnering with someone who is serious about dieting (and therefore successfully slims down) increases your chance for weight-loss success. Having someone to whom you are accountable and who can offer advice and support keeps you vigilant.
And it goes both ways. By making positive choices, you influence your partner, and then your partner makes positive choices and influences you back, completing a positive influence loop. Your short-term success, provided you partner with the right person, ultimately determines whether you both attain long-term goals.