Most people who are overweight or obese see it as a problem probably due to their body image as perceived by other people. But overweight or obesity has far more serious problems which people may not be aware of, and these are the health implications.
People who are overweight or obese have a relatively higher risk, than those who are not, of developing hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, stroke, infertility in women, difficulty sleeping at night, many types of cancer (prostate cancer in men, breast and colon cancers), and heart diseases such as myocardial infarction (heart attack) and heart failure.
To find out if you’re overweight or obese, measure your weight on a good scale in kilograms and record it, then measure your height in metres using a standard metre rule and record it. Now, use a calculator to divide your recorded weight by the square of your recorded height (kg/m^2); whatever you get as the answer is your body mass index (BMI). Normal, healthy body weight falls within a BMI of 18 and 24.9kg/m^2; anything above 25kg/m^2 is overweight, and above 30 is obesity.
If your calculated BMI is above 25 or 30, you should start working on your weight to bring it within the range of 18 and 24, and below are effective ways that will help you achieve that provided you’re consistent with them:
- Modifying Your Diet
One of the effective ways to shed that body fat is changing how and what you eat. Cut down significantly the amount of eba and fufu you swallow every day. Eat more of fruits, protein-rich foods like beans; cook your food with plant-based cooking oil like groundnut or vegetable oil. Make sure you eat all your food at home and set a goal not to eat any snacks or take soft drinks outside your house (at work or when hanging out with friends) because this is where you can eat anything mindlessly. You should consult a professional dietician or human nutritionist if your BMI is 30 and above for a standard meal plan for your weight loss program.
- Regular Exercise
The last health tip talked about the benefits of regular jogging, an aerobic exercise. To effectively lose weight, an overweight/obese individual must set out at least one hour 5 to 7 times a week for majorly aerobic exercises such as outdoor jogging and cycling and indoor threadmill and bicycle exercises. To improve one’s chances of compliance with an exercise program, one should register with a functioning gym or join a very active fitness group in their neighbourhood. Importantly, before starting an aerobic exercise program, an overweight or obese individual should see their doctor for a complete evaluation of their heart and lung function so as to know the maximum healthy intensity of physical exercise they can take.
- Social Lifestyle Changes
Weight gain occurs gradually but from those little, insignificant things that we do always like sitting idly watching TV or lying in bed or chatting away with friends on social media throughout a whole day. To really achieve success in losing weight, one must cut down significantly the amount of time spent sitting idle; even when chatting with friends, try to keep your body physically active by multitasking.
In addition, obese individuals should try to get enough sleep, at least 6 hours, as it has been shown by research to help in weight loss because there’s no food intake during sleep while the body still burns calories.
- Drinking a lot of Water
Before each meal at home, drink as much water (at least 50cl) because water, which is needed by the body in energy production and expenditure, has been found to significantly boost the body’s rate of energy usage, even while at rest, in overweight or obese people enrolled in a weight loss program.
There are drugs which have been shown to help obese people lose weight. These drugs work by either suppressing appetite, preventing already ingested food from being absorbed by the body or increasing the rate at which the body burns calories. But these drugs have their various side effects and can ONLY be prescribed by a doctor after fully evaluating the individual.
Finally, the most important ingredient necessary for success in losing weight is your determination and motivation which manifest in how you strictly comply with your diet, physical exercise and other lifestyle changes that you have adopted. It is also important you join a weight loss group where you can meet with people who have and share your concerns and goals, and together you can motivate one another to achieve that dream body weight and image. If you’re using the services of expert dieticians, human nutritionists, and fitness experts, it’s important you consult with them regularly.
For more advice and help, feel free to ask a Doctor via The Reliance Care App