Losing weight requires about an hour a day of moderate exercise and changes in eating habits.
Lose weight the easy way, be ready to change habits
Philippine Daily Inquirer / 04:45 AM October 11, 2016
Obesity is one of the biggest health problems in the world, causing a string of other ailments such as heart disease, diabetes, sleep disorders and more. But don’t be so quick to blame someone’s weight on laziness or gluttony.
“The evaluation of overweight and obese persons includes looking into several factors: ethnicity, family history, history of weight gain, maximum body weight, medications that may contribute to weight gain, previous approaches to weight reduction, patterns of food intake, including binge eating, and physical activity levels,” says Dr. Gia Wassmer, head of MakatiMed’s Weight Wellness Center.
Dr. Wassmer offers these tips:
Lifestyle changes. Lifestyle modification—or changes in diet, exercise, and behavior—is the cornerstone of every weight loss program. “One of the major changes that has to be done is a reduction in calorie intake. For most of us, a reduction to 500 calories a day will result in loss of approximately one pound per week and a 10 percent reduction in initial weight in six months,” she says.
“Although this may seem disappointing to the obese individual, it is associated with significant improvement in obesity-related conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension,” she adds.
Fad diets may fail. “It’s better if the diet plan is acceptable to the individual, so that long-term compliance is more likely,” explains Dr. Wassmer.
“Fad diets—or those diets that promote laxatives or fasting—often set you up for failure by depriving you of what you want. You won’t be able to sustain that diet for long, and it is likely that you will rebel and end up back where you started,” she explains.
Get moving. “Exercise without caloric restriction is generally ineffective in weight loss, but it is essential in long-term weight management,” says Dr. Wassmer.
“Increased physical activity provides cardiovascular benefits, prevents loss of muscle mass during weight loss, promotes better dietary adherence through improved mood, and may directly reduce fat in the internal organs,” she adds.
Losing weight requires close to an hour a day of moderate-intensity exercise. People suffering from obesity, or even those who haven’t worked out for a long time, should consult their doctor.
“But the little things you can do every day will help, like parking away from the entrance to force you to walk, and using the stairs instead of an elevator,” says Dr. Wassmer.
Stay in touch with your emotions. Eating is often influenced by personal, psychological, or social reasons. “These emotions and behaviors are powerful forces that impede long-term caloric restriction and weight loss,” Dr. Wassmer says.
She offers strategies to modify our eating behaviors through stimulus control (avoiding cues that prompt eating), self-monitoring through a daily food diary, positive thinking, and social support.
“Besides jotting down what you eat and when, you should also note how you were feeling right before eating,” she says. “Our emotions play a huge part in our eating habits.”
Ask the experts. It’s always best to consult a doctor when wanting to make lifestyle changes. In the case of obesity, treatment is best undertaken as soon as possible.
Makati Medical Center’s Weight Wellness Center offers personalized programs to help you lose weight safely and keep it off by lifestyle modification. Call 8888999; e-mail [email protected]; visit www. makatimed.net.ph.