Forget New Year’s Day, the biggest diet start date—for men —is the day after the Super Bowl, according to some nutrition companies.
According to a survey by Nutrisystem, one in four NFL fans pack on an average of 10 pounds during football season. And the diet company says at the official end of the season, men typically are ready to get rid of the excess.
“The Big Game is like New Year’s and many men’s resolutions do not start until the football season has officially come to a close. We see about double the men’s orders on Super Monday,” says Dawn Zier, CEO of Nutrisystem.
Former NFL quarterback and spokesman for Nutrisystem Dan Marino says he always resets around this time of the year because “it’s easier to stick with it.”
“It seems that once [the] Super Bowl is over, many men are ready to get their diet started because for the last five months they’ve been chowing down on wings, beer and pizza every Sunday as they watch the games,” he says. “And with only 16 weeks until summer and the distraction of Sunday football in the past, it’s easier to start a diet.”
And, it’s not just football season overall, the Big Game is also a massive calorie killer on its own. According to the USDA, Super Bowl Sunday is the second highest day of food consumption in the United States, after Thanksgiving. Additionally, the Calorie Control Council reports that while Americans are watching Super Bowl 51, they will eat an estimated 30 million pounds of snacks—and not particularly healthy ones either.
To top it off, a 2013 study from Psychological Science found that fans of the losing team tend to load up on saturated fats and sugars, whereas fans of the winning team opt for healthier choices.
Monty Sharma, CEO of Jenny Craig, a diet plan initially aimed at women, has also seen opportunity in the male category in recent years. In 2011, the company launched “Jen Works for Men,” and in January of this year, they released a new male-focused campaign centered around a military veteran’s personal story.
“In terms of Super Bowl Sunday itself, we never push out advertising that day as it is not a day that is typically focused on weight loss. However, the days following the Super Bowl tend to be a time when people get back on track with their New Year’s Resolutions and weight loss goals. As a result, we anticipate seeing men engage with dieting more and we will continue to run our male-focused campaign,” Sharma tells FOX Business.
Marino, who lost over 22 pounds says it’s always great when someone—whether male or female—approaches him about their personal weight-loss story. He says that men should find a plan that works for them and stick with it long term.
“Going on a diet doesn’t have to mean you give up the things you love. It’s just about making smarter choices along the way,” he says.