It's coming. The signs are already everywhere and you just know the inevitable. With the market brimming with calorie- laden processed foodstuffs combined with the sedentary lifestyle of today, more and more people are facing the problem of getting fat. Not just plain fat- obese.
Obesity can't all be that bad if it's just the mocking and the inability to do most normal things like running and climbing a long length of stairs… then again, with obesity comes high blood pressure, heart diseases, respiratory problems, diabetes and arthritis among other ailments. If you want to live long enough to enjoy your golden years, gear up for another version of the Battle of the Bulge.
Obesity does not choose its victims. It can sink in as early as the age of six and decreases life expectancy by an average of 7- 20%, not to forget that the pollution and stress will make those numbers rise even higher. Factors to obesity include age, gender, genetics, stress, lifestyle and of course, food.
Most weight loss programs target the elimination of unnecessary calories or those calories beyond a person's required basal metabolism- that's the amount of calories needed to keep a person's basic bodily functions up and running normally. However, with the fads and trends of “Kate Moss" models, some programs go as far as starvation and gastric bypasses.
These are not recommended for a lot of reasons but let's enumerate some for good measure:
1) Quick weight loss tactics only mean quick weight loss- not permanent, not long- term and not healthy.
2) Complications can and will arise from drastic measures beginning with the lack of nutrients. Besides, obese people usually don't do well under the knife unless the doctors say so.
3) Do you really want liposuction? Or cutting off a part of your stomach or intestine?
Some programs focus on removing the sources of fat from a person's diet. The Eat More, Weigh Less does just that by encouraging fruits, vegetables, whole grains and little meat without any caloric restrictions whatsoever as long as the fat content falls below 10% of what you eat. The Pritkin diet also goes along these lines. But before choosing any of these diets, one must consider that fat- the unsaturated kind- is also essential to our body. Some critics have said that these diets are not for everyone, especially those who have high- fat bodies, as the diet will only lead to an inadequacy in fatty acids.
The Atkins diet promotes protein since Dr. Robert Atkins believes that carbohydrates are the main causes of obesity. The diet would allot a person meals consisting of 36% protein, 8% carbohydrates, 53% fat or for maintenance 24% protein, 40% fat, 31% carbohydrates. Another popular diet called the South Beach diet also makes meat a hero by advocating foodstuffs that are high in protein, high in fiber, low in carbohydrates and low in animal fats. Although the South Beach diet was developed for those with a high risk of getting diabetes or heart diseases, the aforementioned diet does not balance the basic food groups.
Then there's the McDougall Project for Maximum Weight Loss, which is basically a vegan diet. Think greens and yellows as these should make up 1/3 of what you eat.
Another example is the Weight Watchers Winning Points program. Based on your statistics and details, the program will allot you “points" that you can use when choosing what to eat. All you have to do is to remain within that range by taking care to select what's right. Vegetables almost have an equivalent of 0 while fruits have 1-2 points per serving. Complex carbohydrates and fats have the highest.
What you can do to get the best program for you is get to the root of the problem and attack from that point. Be idealistic when setting goals. The weight lost per week should fall in the range of ¾- 2 lbs and not exceeding 3. It will be slow at first. Weight lost during the early stages will be mostly water fat so a doctor's supervision is really needed if you plan on losing a lot of pounds.
The body will adapt quickly to the diet so prep up the arsenal with a combination of aerobic (running) and anaerobic (weight training) exercise. In order to maintain this, exercise for at least 15- 30 minutes in increasing increments per day.
The program should also include help for when hunger anxiety attacks and depression urges you to binge. Losing weight involves the mindset too.
Those are just some examples of diet programs, which promise weight loss. But here's catch, what works for others may not work for you. For example, there's such a diet that dictates what you can and can't eat based on your blood type. One can't guarantee same results on such general terms. Weight and build depends on a lot of factors and not just on a single basis as blood type. Word of advice: have a weight loss program tailored for you. Specialists can aid you on this one and with their supervision you will win this fight!
Dr Nathalie Fiset is a family doctor and a certified hypnotherapist. For more information go to: http://www.reachyouridealweight.com , http://www.aperfectharmony.com , or http://www.a-1hypnosis.com