You know you should lose weight, and change your lifestyle, but just can’t seem to find the motivation to get started. The following (compiled by Kathy Barrows, PhD, RDN of the Central Ohio Nutrition Center) will give you the reinforcement to make those changes. In addition you may want to make your own individual list of reasons why you should lose and maintain your weight loss.
- Obesity causes 60 medical disorders including 12 cancers (Dr. Lee Kaplan).
- The economic cost of being obese is about $5000/year for women and about $2500/year for men. This includes lost productivity, sick days, and other costs (Dept of Health policy research report, 9/2010).
- Diabetes or pre-diabetes will strike half of all adult Americans by the end of the decade costing the nation almost $3.4 trillion. It is the number one cause of blindness, kidney disease and a major cause of heart attacks and stroke (Columbus Dispatch, 11/2010).
- 48-66% of obese individuals have some form of anxiety, substance abuse or mood disorder (general population= 26-35%, Dr. Patrick O’Neil).
- Obesity trims up to 8 years off lifespan (S. Grover, Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology 2014). In addition, excess weight didn’t just reduce life expectancy but also healthy life-years, which are years free of obesity-associated diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The greatest losses were seen among young adults ages 20-39, including 18.8 years for very obese men and 19.1 years for very obese women.
Using the above information for motivation, here are some suggestions for the next few winter months!
- Increase your physical activity. Many studies show that exercise does help you feel better, more energetic, and content.
- Exercise with a friend. This gives the added benefit of being social, and makes it fun!
- Elevate your mood with flowers or scents. Scented candles and fresh flowers can brighten your day.
- Continue doing a hobby you enjoy whether it be reading, exercising, woodworking, crafts, etc. Or start a new hobby!
- Plan your next get a-way. Just the planning can give you a warm, cozy feeling.
- Make a list of the lifestyle changes to improve your health. These changes may include increased activity, getting more sleep, losing weight and eating healthier. It may also include techniques for stress management. Refer to the list often. Keep a journal of the progress you are making. Remember it is the trends that count! Happy, healthy 2015!