A focus on weight management rather than weight loss

As one of the fastest growing health problems in the developed world, obesity is associated with a number of diseases such as high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, cancers and even death. The number of adults who are obese has doubled in the past twenty years, so what can be done to prevent these statistics from increasing further?

With the right education, and a focus on weight management rather than weight loss, it is possible to face this problem on an individual basis. Most of us know that to lose weight we need to do two things: eat less and exercise more. However this is easier said than done and many people want to know how they can specifically change their eating and exercise to really make a difference.

A useful indicator for estimating weight management requirements is the Body Mass Index (BMI), which is a measure of your weight in kg divided by your height in meters, squared. A healthy body weight is defined as a BMI of 18.5 to less than 25. A BMI of 25 to 30 indicates an individual is overweight, and a BMI of over 30 indicates obesity.

Preventing weight gain is far easier than losing weight. For most adults, reducing their daily calories by 50 to 100 can prevent gradual weight gain, however to lose weight it may be necessary to reduce their daily intake by 500 calories or more.

Avoiding added sugars, fats and alcohol and increasing the amount of vegetables and fruits is the healthiest way to reduce calorie intake. However it is important to note that three categories of food should always be represented: protein, carbohydrates and fats. To stay healthy, nutritional experts believe that 10% to 35% of our total calorie intake should come from protein, 45% to 65% from carbohydrates and 20% to 35% from fats.

Calorie reduction can only go so far though, and physical exercise must come hand in hand for healthy living and weight management to succeed.

Nutritionist Resource is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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