Losing Weight, the Healthy Way

Being overweight, mostly obese, is not something to take lightly. Studies show that obesity is a serious health challenge, that continues to impact more and more of the population with each year. In December of 2020, the Centers for Disease Control Prevention (CDC), released a study from 2017-2018, stated the age-adjusted prevalence of obesity in adults was 42.4%. Another study from 2019, showed about 18.5% of children ages 2 to 19, living in the United States, were obese. In a Harvard study from 2020, it had referenced an average of one out of every three adults is obese, which is about 36% of the population in the United States alone. 

What’s your BMI?

What does it mean to be obese? 

To be diagnosed as obese, the body mass index (BMI), waist circumference measurements, and other symptoms are measured. The BMI factors in the height, body weight, gender, and age. Normally, a BMI of 30 or higher, and a waist measurement of over 35-40 inches, often indicates obesity. Obesity is considered a medical condition, which is a result of the excess amount of body fat. Having too much body fat can increase the risk for health problems and contributes to problems of its own. 

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What causes obesity? 

The most common and well accepted reasons linked to obesity is due to reduced physical activity and fast food. But there is evidence the main causes of obesity is largely circumstantial. To understand more about the causes of obesity, read my article, “10 Possible Causes of the Obesity Epidemic.” Most causes can be reduced and even eliminated. Regardless, obesity is a serious issue that shouldn’t be ignored. 

Can it be prevented? 

One way to prevent this scenario is to make people aware of the risks of being overweight or obese.  

Here are some diseases that you are putting yourself in risk of if you are carrying a lot of extra pounds:  

  • heart disease 
  • stroke  
  • diabetes 
  • cancer 
  • arthritis 
  • hypertension 

Losing weight helps to prevent and control these diseases.  

The quick weight loss methods which have spread like fire these days do not provide lasting results. Often, dieting methods which involve dietary drinks, foods and supplements or pills do not work. If they do, the results are just temporary.  

It is better to rely on a healthy weight loss option which will provide lifetime results. You must set realistic goals and not expect to lose a lot of pounds in a short span of time.   

Here are some tips on how you can lose those unwanted pounds the healthy way: 

1.   Do not starve yourself.  

The key to a healthier way of losing weight is: Do not diet.  

You may seem happy and feel that you are losing those unwanted flabs on your belly and thighs by skipping meals. But remember that this would not last long. Your body cannot tolerate having insufficient food to fuel the energy that you use up every day.  

If you get used to skipping one or two meals a day, your stored calories will be used up instead of the energy that should have been provided by your meals. So, if you just eat one huge sandwich in one day, it will end up straight to your problem area (i.e. highs, buttocks, hips).  

2.  Start your day right.  

As the say, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”. Have a healthy meal in the morning to jump-start your metabolism.  

Your food intake after you wake up will be used to burn fat all day long. 

3.  Eat small, healthy meals frequently.  

Five small-serving snacks per day is better than three hearty meals. Eating more frequently, and in small servings, can prevent overeating. This will also increase your metabolism and make calories burn faster.  

4.  Decide on how much weight you want to lose.  

Keep your goals realistic. In the long run, it is virtually impossible for you to lose 40 pounds in 2 weeks. Have a mindset that you want to eat healthy to stay healthy for the rest of your life.  

Once you have decided on a weight loss plan or program, stick to it and make sure that you follow your own set of dieting rules.   

5.  Drink lots of water.  

Your body needs enough water to burn fat and keep your cells hydrated and healthy.  

6.  Avoid too much sugar.  

Plan your meals around lots of fruits and vegetables, some bread, rice or pasta for that carbo fix that you need, plus lean meat and protein rich foods. Sweets, sodas and pastries should be once-in-a-while indulgences only. 

7.  Watch your fat intake.  

Fat is not the culprit to being overweight. You need this to keep your weight at the proper level.  

There is such a thing as healthy fats. Olive, peanuts and canola oil have them. Tuna, salmon and mackerel have omega-3 fats which is good for the heart.   

8.  Exercise.  

Leave your car if you are only going a few blocks from home, take the stairs instead of the elevator, jog, cycle or skate. Use these activities and other home chores if you are too lazy to go to the gym and take exercise classes. Make sure that you do this regularly and you will not even notice that you are already shedding pounds with these mundane activities.  

It does not matter how much weight you plan or need to lose. What is important is that you set realistic goals for yourself.  

Go slow. If you have already lost 5 or 6 pounds, give yourself a break then try to lose the next 5 pounds.  

Eat healthy, drink lots of water, have enough sleep and exercise. This will give you a higher chance of losing weight and improving your health, which would result in a new, healthier you.  

A Healthy Diet and Lifestyle is Key to Fighting Obesity

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DISCLAIMER:  

This information is not presented by a medical practitioner and is for educational and informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read. 

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The Lazy Man’s Way to Reduce Bad Cholesterol

I’m happy to introduce my guest writer for today’s post, Deborah H. Land of Cholesterol Reduction Diet Site. Deborah’s site helps raise awareness on healthy eating habits to support those living with high cholesterol. Please visit her site for more information. Enjoy the post!

a. The Myth of Good and Bad Cholesterol

There are actually two types of cholesterol, which is not a known fact for people who misconstrue it as something bad. HDL is the name of the good cholesterol, while the bad one is called LDL. A bloodstream with too much LDL will result in plaques in the arteries. Over time, blood will have a difficult time travelling your arteries because the opening becomes narrow thanks to the amount of bad cholesterol in it. Dietary cholesterol is not the culprit for your having high cholesterol in the blood. Rather, it is copious amounts of saturated fat along with Tran’s fat that is to blame for the tightening of the artery. To keep your cholesterol on the low level, you should eat plenty of unsaturated fats and fibrous foods, as well as exercise often.
b. Cholesterol Numbers and What They Mean

On an average, adults will usually need to have cholesterol checks every five years. Each time you get a cholesterol check it will yield four results – total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and Triglycerides. You will probably need more exercise and dietary change if you go above or below the healthy levels.

Total Cholesterol – less than 200 mg/dL (5.2 mmol/L)
LDL Cholesterol – less than 100 mg/dL (2.6 mmol/L)
HDL Cholesterol – greater than 40 mg/dL (1.0 mmol/L)
Triglycerides – less than 150 mg/dL (1.7 mmol/L)

c. Can Vitamin E Protect Your Heart?

Vegetable oils, nuts and leafy vegetables are good sources of Vitamin E. Vitamin E is not proven to stop you from getting a stroke, but it can lessen your heart disease risk level.

d. Five Great Foods to Lower Your Cholesterol

1. Oatmeal and Oat Bran: These contain a high amount of soluble fiber, which can lower LDL.

2. Fish: Fish is a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which lowers LDL and raises HDL.

3. Nuts: Not only are nuts high in fiber, but they contain the healthy fats you need to keep LDL in check.

4. Plant Sterols: This is found in foods like margarine, salad dressing, orange juice, and functional cookies. 2 grams per day will lower your LDL by 10-15%.

5. Soy: This popular meat replacement can lower LDL by up to 3%.
e. Plant Sterols and its Healthy Benefits

Foods such as VitaTops Muffin Tops, Benecol Spread, granola bars and fat free milk are rich sources of plant sterols. You can easily help your heart when you start eating foods packed with plant sterols and avoid eating foods that contain saturated fats. A saturated fat-filled diet is not canceled out by this. Exercising often as well as eating healthy food will keep your cholesterol in check.

About the Writer – Deborah H. Land writes for cholesterol reduction diet site, her personal hobby blog she uses to help people lower bad cholesterol levels.