Obesity – A Lifestyle Choice

Obesity is an ever growing problem in the UK and the US and cost the health services millions every year in the treatment of people with obesity related diseases. The availability of so many processed, fatty and foods that are generally bad for us has increased dramatically over the years and it has become increasingly difficult to choose what foods to include in our diet.

Many food products and gadgets are available to make our increasingly busy lives that bit easier, but they also make it easy to make the wrong lifestyle choices. Using the car to pop round to the local shops may save you time and effort but it is also taking away useful natural exercise which the body needs which can come from walking to the shops instead.

In many buildings lifts and escalators are available to take you to other floor levels and are the easy and convenient option to take, but using the stairs to go up or down a few floor levels would be much more beneficial to your health. Couple that with the availability of all the quick ready meals and fast food restaurants and it is clear to see how easy it is to start heading down the road to obesity. While these food products and gadgets do make our lives easier, they also make us lazy.

Obesity is caused from lack of exercise and a bad diet. It can affect some people more greatly than others due to the differences in metabolism but with willpower, education, the right food choices and exercise it can be avoided. Allowing yourself to become obese does not only cause you wardrobe problems but will seriously affect your health. Things such as heart disease, strokes, high blood pressure and depression can all be brought on with obesity. Once obesity is diagnosed it can be a long and difficult process to reverse the effects but with determination and the right help it can be done. The best thing is to catch the signs early on and make steps to change your lifestyle by slowly introducing exercise and the right type of foods.

Taking up exercise does not mean you have to take on expensive gym memberships or purchase costly exercise equipment. These are things that can be considered later on if you feel you want to. Starting off slowly and making little changes will go a long way towards a healthy lifestyle. Taking a ten minute walk three times a week can help to reduce your waist circumference and improve your heart health immensely. It could also help to relax your mind and give you some much needed down time. The walk does not have to be at a brisk pace either, if you are walking and are still able to talk to a friend without getting out of breath you will still be reaping the benefits. Start taking the stairs instead of the lift or escalator, take the dog out for a walk or take a stroll to the park with the kids. Believe it or not this will all be useful exercise for you.

There are many different diet fads around these days, all claiming to make you lose weight some way or the other some may work and some may not. Healthy eating should be viewed as a lifestyle, something that you will do for the rest of your life rather than for a couple of months or until the weight comes off. Healthy eating does not mean having to eating tasteless boring foods for the rest of your life either. For the most part it is all down to the way food is prepared which could make the difference between a healthy meal and an unhealthy meal.

A burger for instance is widely viewed as unhealthy. This is because we think of burgers that are prepared in various fast food restaurants which are made with high fat beef and laden with cheese and high calorie sauces, but a freshly prepared burger made with lean mince and topped with tomato sauce, lettuce, freshly cut tomatoes inside a wholemeal bun is very good for you and quite delicious too.

If you allow yourself to become obese then the road back can be a long a difficult one, involving doctors, many trips to the hospital, and possibly surgery. It is important to make your lifestyle changes early which will make things significantly easier. Making small changes will go a long way to improving your health, wellbeing and outlook on life.

Exercise Tips:

Take regular walks (10-20 minutes three times per week at least)

Use the stairs instead of the lift or escalators

Head down to your local swimming pool and do some lengths

Purchase an aerobic DVD and follow it a couple of times per week.

Healthy Eating Tips:

Swap sugary snacks for fruit snacks

Choose vegetables you enjoy and have them with your meals

Don’t miss meals Eat at least three times a day

Avoid processed food and eat fresh as much a possible

Treat yourself to your favourite foods (healthy or unhealthy) once or twice per week only