According the CDC (Center for Disease Control) Obesity (yes obesity is a disease) is an all too common disease state for Americans (and for people from countries all over the world). The U.S. obesity rate is more than one-third (36.5 %). For some groups like non-Hispanic blacks the rate is much higher (48.1%) and for Hispanics (42.5%). In Mexico, the world’s most obese nation, 7 in 10 adults are overweight (that’s nearly 70% of the adult population)! There are also economic factors such as the fact that higher income men tend to be more overweight than lower income men, the opposite is true for women with lower income women being more overweight then higher income women.
With such sobering statistics as these, it is important to remember that obesity, or simply carrying excess weight, has many adverse impacts to your body such as diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease and even cancer. Excess weight can also be very stressful on the muscular/skeletal system, often leaving people unable to move and unable to exercise and loose the necessary weight…so the problem compounds.
The following are 10 practical steps and reminders you should never forget to avoid suffering from the debilitating disease of Obesity:
1. Loose the belly fat
Unfortunately for most men, and many women, excess weight is often stored in their mid-section. Belly fat is one of the principle factors for elevated risks of cardiovascular disease, hypertension and diabetes. At the same time is diminishes good cholesterol (HDL) and raises levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides. Because of these facts, it is important to maintain a waist measurement of no more than 31.5 inches for women and 35.5 inches for men.
2. Quit Smoking
Tobacco smoke is a leading cause of cardiovascular disease, respiratory issues and cancer in the U.S. Smokers also have a higher rate of obesity and a lower rate of physical activity. The respiratory issues that arise from smoking can make exercise difficult and ineffective
3. Say “NO” to stress
Day to day life can be stressful. Juggling work, relationships, family, health, etc. can be taxing. But it’s when we let it consume us, it affects our overall health. Physical and mental exhaustion, inability to eat, insomnia all affect our ability to maintain physical activity and for our body’s metabolism and digestion to function properly.
4. More fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables do more than just provide us essential vitamins and minerals, they fill the void that would otherwise be filled with potato chips or other processed snacks. Make sure to take advantage of the natural fiber many fruits and vegetables offer as it will improve your digestion, fill you up and reduce weight gain.
5. Drink 2 liters of water per day
Of course, temperature and level of physical activity plays a huge role in the amount of water you should be drinking. The main point is make water your primary beverage throughout the day. Hydration is important for a proper functioning organism. Loss of hydration leads to renal problems, loss of energy and muscle pain/cramps.
6. Consume Omega-3
Found in high levels in some fish, vegetables, nuts and seeds, Omega 3 helps reduce levels of triglycerides in the blood, improves hypertension and even helps reduce risks associated with cancers such as colon and breast cancer.
7. Use more spices and less salt
For many people, just adding salt is enough flavor. Unfortunately, a high level of salt intake is associated with heart disease which considered the primary cause of death of millions of people annually. A solution is to try other herbs and spices to make your food more favorable. Not only do these other spices help reduce salt intake, many (like cinnamon and curry) offer properties that have their own health benefits such as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents.
8. Make Exercise Habitual
No list of things to remember when it comes to weight loss and overall health is complete without mentioning the importance of exercise. Most of us have jobs and lifestyles that are physically inactive. This means that just to break even for the day, that is to not loose muscle and gain body fat, you need to spend at least 20-30 minutes doing a continuous, strenuous exercise. If you want to improve your body, expect to spend 60-90 minutes in the gym 4 times per week for the rest of your life (yes, even if you are over 60, there is a exercise out there for everyone). So, make exercise a habit!
9. Avoid Processed foods
Fast foods, boxed, canned and frozen foods are all processed to preserve shelf life. Many of these are put into microwaves which further destroy their nutritional value. Despite being easy, they are not healthy and often not cost efficient (for the price of 1 McDonalds “extra value” meal, you can buy your family over a pound of raw chicken meat).
10. Teach your kids to cook
The only way we can truly change the eating habits of our cultures is to teach our youth how to cook (healthy). By teaching our kids to cook healthy foods, they will not be reliant on fast food and takeout when they leave the nest. Instilling good eating habits in our children now and giving them the tools to feed themselves healthy food for the rest of their lives, is the only way to break the nutritional downward spiral many of our cultures are currently in!
Unfortunately, bad farming practices that are focused on profitable crops not healthy crops, and of course the introduction of GMO’s have lead to a decreased nutritional value of even raw fruits and vegetables. This is why it is recommended to boost your daily intake of vitamins and minerals with a natural nutritional supplement like Living Traditionally’s Organic Wheat Grass or Organic Spirulina Powder. All Living Traditionally products are guaranteed to be chosen for their abilities to offer natural nutritional value at a affordable price!