Thursday, April 23, 2009

Maintaining a Healthy Weight

What is your BMI (Body Mass Index)? Do you know?
For Adults:
Formula: weight (lb) / [height (in)]2 x 703

Calculate BMI by dividing weight in pounds (lbs) by height in inches (in) squared and multiplying by a conversion factor of 703.

Example: Weight = 150 lbs, Height = 5'5" (65")
Calculation: [150 ÷ (65)2] x 703 = 24.96

We also have a BMI Calculator at our office that you hold in your hands and squeeze. It is used to get a more accurate reading, based on your body rhythms. We use this calculator with all of our "New You" Weight Loss Patients. It gives us a good base reading to start from, and a great way to monitor their body fat levels as they progress through the program.

Obesity is a nationwide concern. Overweight individuals carry a higher risk of heart disease and diabetes, and also have weaker/overused immune systems. Employers are beginning to see the benefits of offering weight management programs to their employees, because they are seeing lower health care costs due to a healthier workforce. It is best to work with a Doctor when beginning a weight loss program, because each person is different and has different health and nutritional needs. A properly trained professional can help you make sure you are meeting your unique nutritional and exercise needs.

Maintaining a healthy weight begins with proper nutrition, eating frequently to maintain optimal metabolism and a steady exercise plan. We recommend our patients get 200 minutes of exercise per week, and keep a food journal so that they know (and are accountable for) what they are eating. Sometimes they are amazed when we tell them that in order to lose a few pounds they need to eat more! Your body knows how much energy it needs to maintain life. If you eat less than your body needs on a regular basis, it will store everything it can in fat cells for emergency use. This means if you are "dieting" and are eating less calories than your body thinks it needs, everything that is not used immediately (even vegetables) are saved as fat. This is why it is sometimes necessary to increase your caloric intake with good healthy foods. Eating small healthy meals frequently, will help kick start your metabolism.

Think of your body as a furnace. If you put fuel into the furnace, it slowly starts to burn and uses up the fuel more quickly as it gets hotter. If you wait till the fire is almost out before you add more fuel, it takes a while for the furnace to get hot again and use up the fuel. When more fuel is added to an already hot flame, the burning process is not slowed down and the furnace starts burning the new fuel immediately. Your body works in much the same way. To take it one step further, if you start a fire with poor fuel, like dry rotted wood or green wet wood, a fire will not burn at its peak potential. It will either burn up the dry wood immediately, or it will smolder and struggle to burn up the wet wood, either scenario produces little, or no heat. In most cases, wet wood will burn if placed on an already hot fire, but it pops and crackles and fights the process. If you think of this in terms of healthy foods vs. sugary, refined foods with little health value, you can understand how the body's furnace (metabolism) works.

In unison with a healthy diet (lots of vegetables, fruit, protein, whole grains and nuts), our office offers a special formulation of supplements to help flush the sugars and fats from your system naturally. If you provide your body with what it needs, and offer it support when it needs some assistance or is working harder on something (like losing weight), it will return to a proper balance and good health will follow. Nothing changes overnight, but with diligence, and proper counseling, you can achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

No comments:

Post a Comment