Clinically, obesity is a medical condition in which excess adipose cells or fat have been accumulated in the body. Obesity is the result of excessive food intake and insufficient or complete lack of physical activity. This condition can cause various diseases like diabetes, hypertension, heart failure, sleep apnea, and even cancer. According to the Center for Disease Control, an estimated 93 million adults suffer from obesity in the US alone, making obesity-related conditions one of the leading causes of death.
These numbers do not include the millions of children who are also diagnosed with this illness as well. The World Health Organization (WHO) has noted the significant increase in children with obesity since 2008. WHO recommends that parents provide their children with proper nutrition consistently, especially in the first two years of their lives. Parents should be keeping them away from food with empty calories as much as possible. It also recommended that mothers breastfeed their children exclusively for the first six months and continue until the age of 2.
Endocrinologists recommend a variety of treatment methods for their patients. These treatments range from the basic diet and exercise to surgery. Recent innovations have been proven to be less invasive and have given patients better results at a fraction of the time. According to Gary Preacher from the official HCG Diet website, the shock to your body when starting a diet and exercise program is always going to produce quick initial results. Here are some other tips you may want to consider:
1. Lifestyle Change
Everything must start with you. Be the change that you want to be and begin by modifying your lifestyle in general. One of the most common mistakes people make is changing only a small portion of their routine. At this point, it’s not just about what you eat but how you eat, what you do after you eat and creating a whole new regimen.
2. Eat Well
Eating well does not necessarily mean that you deprive yourself completely. You must have a well-balanced diet with adequate food proportions to keep your body in shape. A common error is crash dieting, never do this. Starving your body makes it think that it is constantly in “survival” mode, meaning the next time you eat the automatic response of your body is to store as much of the nutrients it can get. Crash dieting causes you to gain weight faster than losing it.
3. Foods to Avoid
The number one enemy of every diet is processed sugar and carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are basically complex sugars. In retrospect, carbohydrates are important in providing your body with energy, however, in excess, the carbohydrates are broken down into simpler sugars like glucose. These then get stored as fat and overworks your pancreas into creating more insulin to balance your blood sugar.
Avoid junk food altogether. All processed and fast food is the prime cause of obesity. These foods are made with second-grade ingredients and trans fats which do not contain nutrition but instead give you empty calories which contribute to your weight gain.
Increased sodium intake is also dangerous. High levels of sodium contained in most junk food like chips and instant noodles do not only contribute to bloating but can cause high blood pressure, heart, liver and kidney diseases. Studies show that an average American consumes 23,000mg of salt per day. This is 10 times more than the recommended intake. If possible, minimize your salt but do not completely eliminate this from your diet.
4. Foods to Eat
When organizing your kitchen with healthy food, be sure to include some of the following:
Good carbohydrates. These are non-processed cereals and grains that provide you with the energy you need. Food like, whole grain products, brown rice, corn, and oats are great in providing you with the essential nutrients you need.
Choose clean protein sources like white meat, lean meat cuts and other wholesome sources like soy. Some grains like amaranth, quinoa, and buckwheat have a high protein content, too.
Fruits and vegetables are your best friends. These superfoods can provide you with vitamins and minerals you need. They also contain both soluble and insoluble fibres that are necessary for reducing blood pressure, control blood sugar levels and help with daily excretion.
Limit fat consumption. Fat is still important in a balanced diet, so choose unsaturated fat from plant sources like corn, sunflower, palm or olives. These oils enhance the flavour of your meals and provide you with a healthy alternative to butter and lard.
5. Change Your Meal Frequency
Small frequent meals are effective. Studies show that people who tend to skip meals and starve themselves during a certain time have a harder time losing weight. Doctors recommend this method since it allows your body to digest a small portion at a time, utilizing all the nutrients avoiding excess storage.
6. Stay Active
If you’re not already active, it’s probably time to start.
Experts recommend at least 30 to 45 minutes of daily exercise. This is to ensure that the amount of food you have consumed will be converted to energy instead of being stored as fat in your body. If going to the gym seems a bit too much for your schedule, simple exercises at home should do the trick.
Sports and Recreation
If a structured exercise routine is boring for you, engaging in sports or recreational activities that help you sweat should be your next option. Participating in activities with peers has been proven to maximize your productivity, plus losing a couple of pounds in the process is a definite win.
7. Annual Laboratory Work-Ups
One part of the process people may forget to do is to get blood work done. There are cases where people lose weight physically, but their cholesterol and blood sugar are still above the normal range. Have a lipid panel done to confirm that your cholesterol levels are within the normal standards. This will let you know if you would need to take medication along with your diet and exercise. Check your blood sugar using the Hemoglobin A1c (HBA1c) or glycated haemoglobin test to give you the average blood sugar level within three months. This test will be able to identify if you would need insulin or other blood sugar regulating medications to help your pancreas eliminate unnecessary sugar in your body.
8. Join a Club
This doesn’t necessarily mean a gym or fitness club. Maybe a short walking club or a dance club. Something fun and even slightly energetic, because if you are having fun you won’t notice you are doing any exercise at all.
9. Join a Group
There are various community groups both in the real world and online that will help you overcome any mental health problems you might be facing. By taking care of your mental health first and foremost it will make taking care of the body that little bit easier.
10. Be Consistent
It is important to stay on the program once you have started. The routine you have created for yourself should be a permanent addition to your lifestyle. This will ensure optimal results and prolonged life expectancy.
Keep track your progress through photos or journals to inspire you to stick to your regimen. If it helps, you can share your experience with others and encourage them to choose a healthy lifestyle, too.
Maintaining a healthy body should be everyone’s end goal. It might be tough in a world full of temptation, but at the end of the day, we all want to live a long and happy life.