Weight loss is an emotive topic for some. In fact, many people are trying different methods of weight loss just to fit in the society. Interestingly, some cultures have the wrong idea about overweight as a sign of affluence and perfect health. Unfortunately, medical research has always found a correlation between excess body fat and some diseases (i.e. lifestyle diseases).
|A fitness session in a gym|
Source: CC-BY, via Wikimedia
Diseases associated with overweight
- Heart Disease – overweight facilitates the formation of plague in the coronary arteries. This waxy substance may block or reduce the blood flow and lead to heart attack.
- Osteoarthritis- obesity leads to wearing of the cartilage in the leg joints and thus causing pain and other symptom associated with osteoporosis
- Cancer – overweight put you at the risk of getting breast, colon, gallbladder or endometrial cancer. Moreover, latest studies show a relationship between overweight and liver cancer and cancer of the esophagus.
- High Blood Pressure – obesity means more cholesterol in the body, which can block the blood vessels and lead to high blood pressure. High pressure is also a recipe for many illnesses including heart failure.
- Gout – mostly result from excess uric acid in the body thus irritating the nerve endings. Excess body weight worsens the pains.
- Chronic Renal Failure – may not be caused by body fat but made is worse by excess body weight.
- Type 2 Diabetes – is one of the most dreaded diseases capable of causing nerve and kidney diseases. It may lead to amputation or blindness, if not controlled. Over 80% of the patients are overweight
- Stroke – is mainly caused by insufficient blood supply to a given part of the body. Since obesity promotes the development of plague, the arteries are eventually blocked thus causing stroke among other diseases.
- Sleep Apnea – a condition where one has difficulty in breathing when asleep. It is mainly caused by excess fat in the neck region, which can narrows the windpipe.
- Infertility – the inability to convenience in obese women is real. Research also shows that overweight can significantly alter a woman’s menstrual cycle.
What is the ideal weight?
Due to the controversy surrounding the ideal body weight, it is advisable that you fully understand the parameters used before you start any weight loss program. One of the most used parameter is the Body Mass Index (BMI) method. Briefly, this method rates people with a BMI of about 20 as normal while those with above 25 as overweight. On the other hand, height-weight and bathroom scales remain the main weight determinants for some. You should note that none of the above-mentioned method is perfectly accurate but mere approximates. In extreme cases, individuals even compare themselves with friends or other family members when deciding the best body size.
Irrespective of the method used, muscle-fat ratio and bone density must be included in determining the right body size. This is not to say that sex, age and height are no longer significant, as they remain key determinants of a person’s perfect weight.
Major causes of weight gain
At times the best way to prevent overweight is as simple as understanding the major contributors to overweight. Principally, the imbalance between calories intake and the rate at which it used by the body can either lead to one being underweight or overweight. In brief, energy-in must equal energy-out for one to have an ideal body weight. On the contrary, higher energy-in without it being utilized well leads to overweight or obesity. Other major factors that can lead to overweight include:
- Hereditary Factors - people with genes for higher appetite and taste thus the need to overeat. Consequently, they need more effort to lose weight compared to other people.
- Inactive Lifestyle – Lack of exercising and mostly idling is a big recipe fro weight gain. In fact, people with the tendency to watch telly for longer hours at more risk.
- Health Conditions – conditions like hyperthyroidism are associated with uncontrolled weight gain.
- Stress and Medicines – being in bad mood affects the normal metabolism of fats in the body. In addition, drugs such as corticosteroids are agents of weight gain.
- Lack of Sleep – this reduces the metabolism rate which makes in turn lowers the fat burning processes in the body.
- Pregnancy – usually considered normal but may be long-term if not well managed.
- Age - .Old age comes with low metabolism, which means less utilization of body fats.
Losing weight the natural way
Once you have determined that you weigh above the normal range, it is only better you approached the weight loss naturally. This means the methods do not have undesirable side effects as is common with most chemicals. There are different categories of natural approaches you can use to get the ideal weight you have been yearning for. Here are some of the most effective natural weight loss methods:
The dietary approach
Most people just have wrong eating habits, which once corrected can help their weight problems. It is advisable that one:
- Takes vitamin C rich foods such as Citrus
- Takes herbal tea
- Eats lots of vegetables and fruits like carrot, orange or pineapple
- Takes salads and avoids fast foods
- Avoids carbonated beverages, sugary food, snacks
- Reduces sodium intake
- Takes at least eight glasses of water a day to improve
- Eat a lot of whole grain
- Takes honey to improve fat metabolism.
- Consumes oatmeal, soya beans and skimmed milk provide the body with the much-needed protein essential for muscles mass do not stress an individual’s digestive system.
- Eat five small meals as opposed to the traditional three heavy meals per day
The dietary approach can be summarised as reduced carbohydrate and fat intake, increased calorie burn and a controlled appetite. These are the main dietary rules to observe as far as natural weight loss methods are concerned.
To complement a good diet is a change of lifestyle. In other words, move from inactive lifestyle to an active one. You therefore need to:
- Walk and jog regularly (preferably in the park for at least 30 minutes)
- Do some light workouts or dancing in the morning
- Avoid oversleeping
- Wear clothes that suppress appetite e.g. blue colored clothes
- Use stairs instead of elevators
In summary, walking and jogging in the park are some of the best ways to lose weight naturally. On the other hand, exercises will help avert weight gain associated with inactive lifestyle that can reduce the risk of weight related diseases. Gladly all these proposals are flexible and achievable and should be embraced all.