24/09/2012 12:24 BST | Updated 24/09/2012 12:31 BST

Little Black Dress Diet: 12-Week Christmas Party Countdown Begins

According to a leading weight-loss aid manufacturer, Brits planning to get their bodies in shape for the party season should start their diets today.

So forget all thoughts of autumnal comfort food, starchy roast dinners and deeply satisfying gulps of Pinot Noir -- it's time to open that diet diary and start recording the reality.

A diet beginning on September 24 allows party-goers sufficient time to lose weight the healthy and sensible way over a 12-week period, so by the time Christmas celebrations are in full swing, they will have achieved their winter weight-loss goals.

Research by XLS-Medical reveals that more than half (51%) of the population want to lose weight in the run-up to Christmas.

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In addition, stats suggest that a woman's ideal dress size increases with age.

Those in the 18-34 age bracket stated that they would like to fit into a size 10 while women aged 35+ said they would feel most comfortable as a size 12.

Dr Matt Capehorn, clinical director at the National Obesity Forum, comments in a statement: "Starting a diet now gives dieters a reasonable time frame in which to lose weight steadily by Christmas.

"It's important not to fall into the trap of last minute crash dieting, which is often unsuccessful and can play havoc with blood sugar levels and appetite cravings."

"As a result, dieters can end up gaining weight as they struggle to cope with changes brought on by such extreme measures.

"Undertaking a healthy eating and exercise plan now with a realistic goal in mind will ensure dieters are not only looking good but feeling great this party season."