Guest Blog: Health + Wellness = Your Best Weapon Against Obesity
The bank determines your creditworthiness via your credit score. Likewise, your BMI can put your overall health into perspective. A number between 18 and 25 means that, weight-wise, you’re in pretty good shape. Higher than that and you fall into the overweight range. Once your body mass index hits 30, you are officially considered obese. But you don’t have to let those numbers continue to climb—or scare you. Through a combination of wellness-focused activities, you can take control of your overall health and wellness and beat the scale into submission. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Don’t just exercise; find a fitness routine you can love forever. In exercise as with all things, you must find a routine that you enjoy. Otherwise, you’ll lose steam and head straight for the couch. Thankfully, there are almost as many different types of exercises as there are fitness goals, and you’ll have no trouble finding an activity you enjoy. The Huffington Post explains that you should consider factors such as your schedule and whether your training program can carry over into your everyday life.
Watch the clock and get in bed at least eight hours before waking time. We all love to snuggle into a warm bed at night, and now you have even more reasons to hit the hay a little earlier. Getting enough sleep can help your body reboot and will work wonders on your metabolism. Plus, your brain will be rested and able to handle everything the stress of the day can toss at you.
Dieting doesn’t work, but changing your eating habits does. Let’s just get this out of the way right now: diets don’t work. It’s a four-letter word that rears its ugly head anytime you’re considering dropping a few pounds. As Psychology Today contributor Meg Selig points out, only about 5 percent of dieters see long-term results. This is because most diets aren’t sustainable. If you want to lose weight—and keep it off—you have to change your relationship with food. Our Western diets are oversaturated with fat and sugar, and that’s led to the obesity epidemic.
Consider eating a healthy dose of fruits and vegetables along with complex carbohydrates, whole grains, and lean cuts of meat, such as chicken or ground turkey. One easy way to add extra fruits and vegetables to your diet is to make yourself a smoothie every morning. Just make sure you have a blender that’s strong enough to crush ice. Depending on your natural body size and activity level, you will need anywhere from 1200 to 2500 calories in a 24-hour period. Here’s quick online calorie calculator to help you determine your daily nutritional requirements.
Stop weighing yourself every day. Although your BMI and weight in general are important when thinking about your health, it’s not healthy to fixate on numbers, especially in the early days of a lifestyle change. There are many ways to track your progress without hoping that your numbers have gone down each morning. Plexus explains that as you progress toward your goals, you’ll notice an increase in strength, endurance, and mobility. You’ll also realize that you sleep better and aren’t quite as stressed. You’ll have more energy, and you’ll begin to notice that your snug clothes start to hang.
If you can’t shake bad feelings, talk to someone. The National Institutes of Health explains that there is an undisputed link between depression and obesity. And being depressed can make it even harder to find the motivation to make changes for the better. If you feel down and out, anxious, stressed, or hopeless, talk to a qualified mental health professional who can help you offload your emotional baggage so you’re free to venture into the world of wellness.
While your own individual health needs will be unique to you, exercising, getting enough sleep, watching what you eat, and addressing underlying mental health concerns are universally accepted as ways to enhance your overall health and well-being. You owe it to yourself and your family to shed the outer shell that’s been weighing you down and be the very best version of you.
Image via Pixabay