|Global weight gain crisis|
|Saturday, 30 June 2012 12:00|
Recent research indicates that the increased amount of overweight or obese individuals could have a similar financial impact as an extra billion people on economies and governments around the world.
“When people think about environmental sustainability, they immediately focus on population. Actually, when it comes down to it — it’s not how many mouths there are to feed, it’s how much flesh there is on the planet,” explains Professor Ian Roberts from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
Why are we so fat?
Popular thought is that we are less physically active and that we have genetic tendencies to be overweight. In reality the greatest change is the food that we eat. More specifically, the amount of sugar in the food we eat.
Sugar and highly processed food items impact blood glucose and insulin levels in our bodies. Large fluctuations in insulin will stimulate fat storage, hormonal imbalances and metabolism deficiencies. These three items can be classified as the perfect storm that develops obesity.
Consuming fat does not necessarily make you fat — it’s the type of fat that matters. A fat is classified bad if it is highly processed, modified or away from its natural form. Your body does not know how to process this type of fat and will contribute to obesity.
Good fats such as the fat found in nuts, healthy meat sources, olive oil, avocado oil and coconut oil will stimulate one’s metabolism and shed fat versus store fat.
How do we lose fat?
Do not look to lose weight through weight loss products, procedures or other quick fixes. The best way to lose weight is not the fastest one. It is important to note that weight loss must be done in a healthy way or you may just be a sick, skinny person.
The best approach to weight loss is selecting a system that can be sustained for the rest of your life. We all understand that you cannot work out once and be in great shape, it takes time and repetition.
Below are some weight loss tips that you can incorporate into your everyday regimen. Remember, it is never too late to start living healthy and start taking an active role in your health.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Our planet is 70 percent water and so is your body in its most healthy state. However, numerous studies suggest that up 90 percent of the world’s population is dehydrated.
How much water should you drink daily? Many health professionals suggest dividing your body weight in half and drinking at least that many ounces of water daily. Think how quickly plants shrivel up and begin to die without a lot of water. You require the same.
Consume real food
When you eat real food, you get real nutrients. It has been found that people that have real food in their diets have higher levels of vitamins, minerals and weight loss nutrients. These nutrients have been found to slow the ageing process, reduce inflammation and balance hormones. If you simply supplement these nutrients, it is common not to find the same results. Supplements are meant to supplement, not replace the consumption of real food.
Eating not-real food has the exact opposite effects. It causes you to age quicker and gain weight. Foods that are highly processed, found in a box or in a can have high amounts of white sugars and flour that have no nutritional value.
Movement is life
Exercise is the one of the best ways to maintain your weight and avoid disease. The type of exercise is important, however. The classic low intensity, long duration exercise has been found to have a weight gaining effect through the hormone cortisol. The stress hormone cortisol is stimulated through classic exercises that include aerobics, running and biking for more than 30 minutes in duration.
The “new aerobics” has the opposite effects of the classic exercises. Research has found the intensity of the exercise to be the most important component factor in generating the ideal hormonal response.
This hormonal response causes you to lose or maintain a healthy weight and improve lean muscle mass. This “new aerobics” is right for any age group, since it challenges your current level of fitness. Increase the intensity of your workout, reduce the time and reap the rewards.
Living naturally means no smoking, alcohol abuse, or overindulging in sweets. Stick to a real food diet that is based on fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and lean meats. Get plenty of exercise and focus on family and community.
The amount of stress has been found to increase the chances of developing obesity. The primary mechanism of weight gain is through hormones. Physical, chemical and emotional stress has been found to stimulate cortisol which affects fat distribution. Cortisol stores fat around the organs and abdomen thus creating significant health concerns such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
Exercising, eating healthy foods and eliminating toxins will encourage how your body can respond to stress. We all have stress; it’s the response that matters.
Get adequate sleep
Many people do not get enough sleep, but there are others that get too much sleep. Your physical activity level and overall health status is the best gauge. Sleep is needed to help regulate and heal your body.
The poorer your lifestyle, the more sleep you need. The solution is to improve your lifestyle, get less sleep and accomplish more things that you value. Some people like to sleep, but find themselves more tired than before.
Everyone’s bodies are different and require a different amount of sleep. The common range quoted is between six to eight hours of quality sleep per night.Weight gain is a trend just like poor diet, it’s time to reverse the trend and restore health.
The power is in your hands to take initiative and reverse the damaging effects of weight gain, diabetes, heart disease and cancer. It’s not genetics; it’s the choices we make. Choose today to make a difference in you and your family’s life.
This column is directed by your questions, comments and inquiries. The health advice provided is in collaboration with the World Health Organisation’s and the International Diabetes Federation’s goals of prevention, maintenance and natural treatment of disease. The advice is for educational purposes and does not necessarily reflect endorsement.
Visit their websites: www.who.int www.idf.org
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