Is this proof that diets don"t work? Brits spend 14 YEARS of their lives counting calories

Is your diet doomed to fail Brits spend 14 YEARS of their lives counting calories

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UPDATED:

16:49 GMT, 23 May 2012

Hungrier and hungrier: We are now spending four to five months a year following a strict healthy eating regime

Hungrier and hungrier: We are now spending four to five months a year following a strict healthy eating regime

More of us than ever are turning to dieting in a valiant effort to beat the bulge for the summer.

But we are mainly doomed to failure, with the average British person spending 14 years of their life counting calories.

That adds up to a gut-busting four or five months out of 12 of attempting to stick to a strict healthy eating regime – and beating ourselves up as we fail.

One in four people said images of super-thin celebrities made them want to diet, according to the survey of 2,000 people by Philips.

A huge 66 per cent said it was the thought of wearing skimpier clothes in the summer that motivated them to get into shape.

If the trend continues, as many as one in ten women will spend 18 years of their lives on a diet in the future, the reported concluded.

It is not just women who are obsessing about staying thin, either.

One in three men are now spending around two to three months a year trying to lose weight in time for summer.

But male dieters are far more likely to stick to their guns, as only one in four ditch their diet before they reach their target weight, compared to one in three women.

A third of dieters said they gave up healthy eating plans out of boredom when one in five blamed lack of discipline.

A huge 66 per cent said it was the thought of wearing skimpier clothes in the summer that motivated them to get into shape.

A huge 66 per cent said it was the thought of wearing skimpier clothes in the summer that motivated them to get into shape.

Diet & Nutrition expert Rachael Anne Hill said: 'It’s clear that the arrival of spring also brings pressure for people to shape up for summer.

'People would be much better adopting a healthy lifestyle all year round, without concentrating their efforts on a few select months.'

Londoners are the most desperate to diet, with one in three confirming they are swayed by celebrity fads such as Beyonce’s maple syrup diet or Kirsten Dunst’s 'alkaline diet'.

Miss Hill added: 'The problem with fad diets is that they are not sustainable, which can lead to people failing and having continued problems with their weight. Taking a long-term view and having a healthy eating plan that can easily be incorporated into your own lifestyle will be much more successful in the long run.'

The top three difficulties those surveyed said they faced were the time a healthy meal tales to prepare, the added cost of eating healthy food and not feeling full after eating a healthy meal.