For some women, weight control is more important than sex, according to a new poll of 1,001 people.
About half of women say they would rather go without sex for the summer than gain 10 pounds. A fourth of men feel the same way.

More people say they would rather shed 10 to 20 pounds during the summer than get promoted at work.

Of course, weight loss would make them feel sexier. About 66% of people say they need to lose weight to feel sexier than they currently do. It would take a loss of an average 23 pounds to feel hotter.

“What this shows is that people are highly motivated to not gain weight,” says Bruce Daggy, vice president of research and development for Nutrisystem. “They recognize what it will do to their feeling of well-being and fitness.”

Another poll conducted a few years ago for Fitness magazine found more than half of Americans say they’d rather lose their jobs than get fat.

Other findings from the Nutrisystem poll, conducted by Kelton Research for the diet company:

•Three-quarters of both men and women would have been willing to give up something — such as watching TV, shopping, using a cellphone or computer for the summer — for a flat tummy.

•Almost half say they don’t diet because they don’t want to give up their favorite foods.

•About a third don’t want the inconvenience of dieting, and a quarter don’t want to deal with the stress.

•Half of dieters have tried to lose weight within the past two years.

•A third have tried over the past year.

•About half say that you have to start planning in the winter (January through March) to get your body in shape for summer.

•Participants in the survey attemped to diet an average of 13 times in their lifetime — women, 16 times; men, 8.

By Nanci Hellmich, USA TODAY