Weight loss has become a loaded phrase in modern day conversations, but why? If you search “weight loss” on Google or Social Media, you receive and overwhelming amount of posts, opinions and unwarranted advice. There is plenty of information (correct and incorrect) on HOW to lose weight, but there are only few posts that focus on WHY it is important to maintain a healthy weight.
When we talk about “healthy weight”, we refer to a healthy weight for your body – which goes beyond the scale. We are all unique and therefore our bodies and abilities are all different, no weight looks or feels the same for two people. What may be a healthy weight for one person may be different for another, you decide what your healthy body weight looks and feels like. There are a few things you should consider when looking at your individual weight, and that is the risk that can be associated with excess body weight. It is all about helping you make an informed decision for your own body and lifestyle.
How excess weight affects our health:
Having excess fat, and thus excess weight, causes increased inflammation in the body. Over long periods of time, increased inflammation creates all sorts of havoc in our bodies. This is usually what leads to the disease associated with increased weight such as:
- Diabetes mellitus type 2 or Decreased Insulin sensitivity.
- Chronic Joint pain (especially in the knees)
- Hormone imbalance (as is the case in Metabolic syndrome)
- Lowered immune response (making you more susceptible to infections).
The chronic inflammation increases your risk of developing these issues.
How losing excess weight affects your health:
If you already suffer from one of the above conditions, reducing some of your excess weight may help alleviate some of the associated symptoms. Just losing 5% of your body weight if you are overweight may lead to increased quality of life.
Losing excess weight can also help stabilise hormones. Fat is an endocrine organ, meaning it produces hormones such as leptin and adiponectin. It also stores a lot of negative hormones, such as xenoestrogens (Synthetic exogenous hormones). When there is excessive fat, there is excessive production and storage of hormones and this also results in increased inflammation. These hormones can also affect your hormone cycles and lead to mood swings, elevated appetite and fatigue. Therefore, losing excess weight counteracts this negative hormone storage and production. Balancing out your metabolism and hormone cycles, which is important for men and women to maintain a healthy life.
Most of the health risk discussed are linked to excess weight and obesity. This may be based on a waist circumference greater than 35.5in (90cm) in Women; and 39.5 in (100cm) in Men (this is just a guideline, not a diagnostic tool).
How excess weight may affect our lives:
As many of you reading this may have experienced, excess weight can have its physical and emotional tolls. For some of us, it is difficulty joining in on daily family activities. For others, it is severe social anxiety during the summer months. At times it may feel debilitating to have that extra weight that you cannot shake. That is why it is important for you to decide and define what a healthy and happy body looks like to you, not based on what we are told it loos like. In order to so we need to focus on the following:
- Our Mindset
- Our Priorities
- Our Dedication
- Our Environment
It is so important to realize what your priorities are, in life and in health.
Going on a journey towards a healthy body and a healthy self- image can do everyone a whole lot of good. And sometimes you need someone to help you along the way.
Living a healthier and happier life is within your reach!