• Sophie Anson

Whole-Body Wellness Is Key to Obesity Battle

Guest writer: Dana Brown of Health Conditions | dana@healthconditions.info

Obesity affects more than 40 percent of adults in the United States. In the struggle with obesity, many people frantically search for an easy solution. From the latest fitness technique or piece of home gym equipment to fad diets, the options are seemingly endless. While some of these are quite effective, each focuses on solving weight loss and fitness problems quickly and conveniently. Obesity, however, requires a life change, not a temporary solution. It requires a balance of whole body wellness and is possible and easier than you might think. Begin with Exercise Rather than hopping aboard a diet trend, begin your battle against obesity with exercise. No matter your age, activity should be a component of daily life, because sedentary lifestyles significantly contribute to higher obesity rates. Getting active doesn't require a gym membership, personal trainer sessions or expensive home gym equipment. Adding 30 minutes to an hour of simple exercise such as walking is a giant step in the direction toward fitness. Experts suggest experimenting with different types of exercise and finding comfortable and fun activities to make the foundation of your fitness plan. Activities can involve walking, running, playing a sport or taking fitness classes with friends.  Once calorie-burning motion is part of your routine, then you can begin adding longer workouts to achieve higher results.

Water, Water Everywhere Water plays a key role in the battle of the bulge. In addition to helping your body stay hydrated and functioning properly, water can keep you full and lower calorie intake. Water needs differ depending on weight and activity, but for those who are obese, drinking half your body weight in ounces of water is the current recommendation, according to Healthline. You can ensure you consume enough water every day by always keeping a refillable water bottle handy, and by finding new ways to enjoy water. For example, you can add sliced citrus to your water for a refreshing flavor boost, or if your tap water tastes off, invest in a countertop system that provides unlimited access to clean, purified water that tastes delicious. Develop a Healthy Diet And although fitness is a strong foundational weapon against obesity, healthy eating multiplies fitness results and both diet and exercise go hand-in-hand with total well-being. Nutritionists believe that the most impactful diets are ones that are balanced and high in nutrient-rich vegetables. These vegetable-forward diets aren’t necessarily vegetarian or vegan and can include lean meat as protein sources that can help accelerate weight loss by building muscle mass. When you can, look for ways to add vegetables to breakfast, lunch and dinner. According to New York City chef - turned healthy living guru Seamus Mullen, the healthiest morning meal looks a lot like lunch. And starting your day with veggies will give you slow-burning fuel for your day, which will eliminate mid-morning cravings that are often satiated through unhealthy snacking. Embrace Food Prep You should also consider the economic and nutritional benefit of preparing your meals versus buying lunches, for example. Packaged and fast food are convenient and taste good, but they are often nutritionally deficient and filled with empty calories.  When you make your lunches for the week, you are in control of ingredients and portions. Essential kitchen tools can make healthy meal prep easier. Sleep and Mental Health While diet and exercise combine for ideal wellness results, other life aspects help in the fight against obesity, too. Proper sleep provides energy and mental acuity. Researchers have linked weight gain to less-than-optimal rest, finding that those getting less than six hours of sleep gained weight more rapidly than those sleeping a recommended eight hours. This study was carried out over thousands of test subjects, nurses, over a 16-year period and the results bolster the idea that sustained healthy lifestyle choices combat obesity more effectively. Mental health, too, can help fight obesity. Feelings of depression are counterproductive to weight loss, and healthy living in general. Stress and anxiety lead to seeking out comfort foods, which are more likely to be unhealthy items. So when planning your attack against obesity, consider your emotional wellness, too. Obesity results from neglecting whole-body wellness. But with a combination of activity, healthy eating, proper sleep and stress-reduction, sustained life changes can help you overcome obesity. Photo Credit: Pixabay Connecting You to the Health Information You Need Most.

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