Secrets revealed

Weight loss secrets revealed

As per the latest data from Center’s for Disease Control, overweight and obesity continue to be a major public health problem in the United States.

Obesity and overweight statistics 2015

  • More than one-third (34.9% or 78.6 million) of U.S. adults are obese according an article published in JAMA.
  • Obesity affects over 50 medical problems including cardiovascular disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, mood disorders and even certain types of cancer, some of which are the leading causes of preventable death. 

Cost of Obesity

The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the U.S. was $147 billion in 2008 U.S. dollars; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than those of normal weight.

Individual cost of obesity

According to a research study from George Washington University, the annual direct individual cost of being obese is $4,879 for women and $2,646 for men. When the value of lost life is added, the results are even more dramatic: $8,365 and $6,518 for women and men respectively, they said at the release, which included a panel of esteemed obesity experts moderated by former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher.

Are Americans serious about losing weight?

According to a poll from Gallup, conducted in 2015, about 51% of Americans said they would like to lose weight. Of these, about 26% are actually are serious about losing weight. 

Now that we know how serious the problem is and how expensive it is, let us look at what can be done to lose weight.

Here are some of the steps you can take to lose weight safely and effectively.

Although most Americans want to lose weight, it is important to realize that losing weight takes more than desire. It takes commitment and a well-thought-out plan to not only lose weight but keep it off. Here’s a step-by-step guide to getting started before losing weight.

1. Understand your body mass index or BMI

BMIWeight Status
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5 – 24.9 Normal or Healthy Weight
25.0 – 29.9 Overweight
30.0 and Above Obese

2. Check your waist circumference

Measuring waist circumference helps screen for possible health risks that come with overweight and obesity. If most of your fat is around your waist rather than at your hips, you’re at a higher risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes. This risk goes up with a waist size that is greater than 35 inches for women or greater than 40 inches for men. To correctly measure your waist, stand and place a tape measure around your middle, just above your hipbones. Measure your waist just after you breathe out.

The table Risks of Obesity-Associated Diseases by BMI and Waist Circumference provides you with an idea of whether your BMI combined with your waist circumference increases your risk for developing obesity-associated diseases or conditions.

3. Find a weight loss program that is right for you

Although there are many fad diets promising everything under the Sun, only a few weight loss programs actually can help you lose weight and have a plan to help you keep from regaining the weight back. If you really are serious about losing weight, you may want to consider consulting with a weight loss physician that preferably accepts your health insurance if you have insurance.

4. Set realistic weight loss goals

Setting the right goals is an important first step to losing weight successfully. Most people trying to lose weight focus on just that one goal of losing weight without having a clear plan to lose weight.

However, the most productive areas to focus on are the dietary and physical activity changes that will lead to long-term weight change. Successful people losing weight are those who select two or three goals at a time that are manageable.

Useful goals should be (1) specific; (2) doable within the constraints of daily life; and (3) forgiving to some extent. For example, saying “Let me eat less and exercise more” is a great goal, but it’s not specific. “Walk 5 miles every day” is specific and measurable, but is it doable if you’re just starting out? “Walk 30 minutes every day” is more attainable, but what happens if you’re held up at work one day and there’s a thunderstorm during your walking time another day? “Walk 30 minutes, 5 days each week” is specific, doable, and forgiving. In short, a great goal! The same applies to diet.

5. Start losing weight

The safe and effective way to lose weight is to aim for weight loss of about 1-3 pounds a week, preferably under medical supervision using a low calorie diet such as the Very Low Calorie Diets (VLCD) or Low Calorie Diet (LCD) with or without meal replacement supplements. For many people, a medication that suppresses the hunger, increases metabolism and assists in reducing cravings might be an additional tool that should be considered by your weight loss physician.
The other steps to losing weight include the following:
  • Monitor your progress
  • Reward yourself for successful weight loss
  • Reach your weight loss goal
  • Have a plan to maintain your weight once you reach your weight loss goal.

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