Up to 2 out of 3 people living in industrialized countries are overweight. This is a catastrophe. But it lies within the hands of those affected, to change that.
Being overweight means having more body fat than what is considered healthy or optimal.
The so called body mass index (BMI) plays a big role in defining overweight. It is calculated with the following formula:
BMI = mass (kg)/height (m)
The definition of overweight is a BMI of 25 or more. It is then sub-classified into severity levels:
Pre-obesity (BMI 25-30) and obesity (BMI 30 or more).
2. Health aspects
Overweight is a very big risk factor for almost all chronic diseases (including cardiac and vascualr diseases, diabetes and cancer). The good thing is that there’s a way to do something about it: 1. with an iron and 2. utmost discipline. Nevertheless, consulting a health care professional is a good idea.
Being overweight is generally caused by consuming more calories (through eating and drinking) than the amount that your body burns through daily activities or exercise. Therefore, the usual treatments are diet and physical exercise.
In order to have a lifestyle (food and exercise) that leads to success, it has to be implemented with no excuses (no more “I’ll start tomorrow”) and it has to be a permanent change.
There are thousands of different diets. The basic pillar of a good diet is very simple: Consuming a variety of foods, that don’t exceed the amount of calories burnt by your body.
Calories are the units used to quantify energy. The amount of calories printed on packages indicates how much energy your body will be able to extract from that food product. Yet, the real amount extracted differs from person to person. Did you know: the ideal amount of calories consumed depends on age, height, weight, gender and the intensity of activities. It can be calculated individually.
3.1. Calculating current calorie intake
As a first step it’s advisable to calculate and write down your daily calorie intake. The amount of calories for every nutritional product can be found on the package, plus, there are a lot of calorie calculator sites on the internet. In the beginning, it’s kind of annoying to look up everything, but it helps to get a quick sense for how much calories every type of food has.
3.2. Reducing calorie intake and exercise
The second step should be to slowly reduce calorie intake. If it’s done properly, then losing weight is a natural result.
Physical exercise is the second most important pillar, next to a proper diet. This change should also be done slowly and increased step by step, so the body can adapt to the new lifestyle change. In the beginning it’s good to start out with small changes such as using stairs instead of the escalator/elevator and to walk or use a bicycle more often. While watching TV a water bottle can be used as a dumbbell, but it’s important to maintain a good, straight body posture. Be creative, exercise isn’t only good for losing weight, it’s generally very healthy, makes you happy and strong. If you don’t believe it, try it out yourself!