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Weight Reduction

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Weight Reduction

It is an essential part of our lives to eat healthily and control our weight. This will help prevent health issues like heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes and some kinds of cancer.
When we overeat and live a sedentary lifestyle, it can lead to obesity. So in order to maintain our weight, we need to burn the calories that we consume in our daily diet through some physical activity, like exercises. Some options that will help us maintain our weights are:

  • Eating low-calorie, low-fat food items.
  • Eating small portions of food.
  • Drinking plenty of water instead of sugary drinks, like juices
  • Daily exercises.

Our diet must contain the following basic nutrients:

  • Water
  • Proteins
  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Carbohydrates
  • Fats
  • Dietary Fibers

Our body derives its energy for its daily activities from the energy supplied by carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. However, when we take in more of these nutrients than we burn, they get stored as body fat.

Why Lose Weight?
Excessive weight can lead to a number of lifestyle diseases and we need to lose weight to prevent the following diseases:

  • Type-2 Diabetes: occurs when the insulin produced by the body is not enough to convert the glucose consumed to energy, leading to a high blood sugar level.
  • Hyperthyroidism: is caused when there is excess production of the thyroxine hormone that can lead to anxiety, bad-temper, lack of sleep, tremors and excessive sweating.
  • Coronary and other heart diseases: are caused by the presence of high cholesterol levels in the blood
    Crohn’s Disease: is a type of inflammatory bowel disease where the digestive tract inflames causing abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue etc.
  • Dementia: is a decline in memory and thinking skills that will hamper a person’s ability to do his/her daily activities properly.
    Ulcerative Colitis: is also an inflammatory bowel disease causing long-lasting inflammation and ulcers in the digestive tract usually the innermost lining of the large intestine, colon, and rectum.
  • Ceoliac Infection: is the overreaction of the body’s immune system to gluten present in food, which can damage the villi or the tiny, hair0like projections in the small intestine.

When to Lose weight?
The doctors usually recommend losing weight when the following indicators are triggered:

  • Body Mass Index (BMI): identify the excess body fat by calculating the BMI using the height and weight of the person. If the patient has BMI level higher than normal, then he/she will be at risk of contracting diseases like heart conditions, high blood pressure, diabetes, difficulty in breathing and some kinds of cancer. A lower than normal BMI indicates an underweight person.
  • Waist Circumference: or measuring a person’s waist helps identify this/her risk for certain medical conditions.
  • Diagnostic Tests: include blood tests to check for blood cholesterol and diabetes, blood pressure tests.
    The patient is advised to consult a doctor if any of the above indicators are flagged so as to help him/her lose weight and prevent diseases that come with being overweight.

How to Lose weight?
There are many different ways to lose weight, some of them are:

  • Dietary Changes: some of the dietary changes that can help the patient lose weight are:
    • Eating Breakfast: in the morning will help in starting the metabolism early and will leave you full and energized till lunch.
    • Eating More Protein-rich food: in the morning is ideal as protein foods need the effort to get digested, helps get the metabolism started and gives a full feeling.
    • Reduce Carbohydrates: especially white processed grains and replace them with whole grains and eat more quinoa, flaxseed, and wild rice as their fiber content will help in digestion, flushing the system and reduce fat.
    • Eat more Fruits and vegetables: to avoid refined sugars.
    • Consume more monosaturated fat: usually found in nuts, olives, olive oil, flaxseed, and avocados.
  • Physical Activity: include,
    • Morning Exercises: improve sleep, jumpstarts the metabolism and helps lose weight.
    • Cardio Exercises: for at least 30 minutes per day will help burn carbohydrates and fat.
    • Moderate Activity: like raking leaves, walking etc., at least 3 times a week.
    • Strength Training: like core-strengthening at least 3 times a week.
    • Take up a sport: like swimming, running, cycling etc
  • Sleeping properly: will help reduce the visceral fat
  • Meditation: will help reduce obesity by reducing the stress and the heavy eating that comes with high stress.

Authored by Dr. Anitha Mani - Infertility Specialist & Laparoscopy Surgeon