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To be Obese - Or Not

Linda Lycett, Editor-in-Chief

ith 1.6billion obese people in the world, its little wonder health is deteriorating at an astronomical rate. It’s a 'wake-up' call for civilization—and it had better take notice. This is one issue needing to be addressed immediately, before people loose sight of what they are becoming and take it as ‘normal’ to be obese.

What is Obesity?

Obesity is not just being fat and over-weight, it’s much more than that. It’s also how YOU perceive yourself. If you think ‘fat’ that is what you will become. If you do not think about what you are putting into your body, you can also become obese.

According to the World Health Organisation, there are 1.6billion adults overweight in the world. That figure is projected to increase by about 40% over the next 10 years. Not a good future. A person with a BMI of 30 or more is considered obese, and a BMI equal to, or more than, 25 is considered overweight.

Admittedly, some people have no control over weight gain, especially those on steroid treatments or anyone with body malfunction. But, the rest of us CAN help what we are and what we look like.

Obesity is most likely a result of the ‘modern western diet’ way of eating and living, and lack of exercise. That can be changed.

A high carbohydrate diet and lack of exercise leads only to one thing – becoming overweight or even obese. By the time one has taken on board all the ads on television for bread, biscuits, chocolate, pizza, fried chicken, other fast-food commercials, rushing around grabbing the first thing that comes to hand, it’s not surprising there are so many obese people in the world today.

In the end, it all comes down to ‘diet’ – the way we eat and live. Until there is change in the way people ‘think about’ what they put into their bodies, the number of obese people will not reduce.

‘Diet’ – as in a way of eating and not a way of reducing weight, IS the be-all and end-all of common sense. The saying ‘You are what you eat’ is very true. You eat rubbish, and rubbish will cling to you – literally, in the form of fat. The high carb and ‘added’ fat diet only serves to ‘hand around’. Some of course are more susceptible than others, as is the case with everything. Anyone with a slow metabolism and/or sedentary lifestyle the high carb eating is not the way to go as the ‘deposits’ will not burn off, and hence attach themselves to the fat cells in the body.

Being obese not only affects the size of the body, it also affects the whole lifestyle. Fashion clothes are out of the question, getting around becomes very difficult creating a tendency to stay home, except for having to go to work, which in turn raises the question of social activities and making friends. This in turn affects ones self-confidence levels, thus creating a ‘comfort eating’ pattern – and the cycle continues.

What can be done about it? That depends on how you would like to be, think and feel…

The first step is to make the decision that you want to be smaller and loose the weight to become a size that is comfortable to you, be it 6, 8, 10, 12, 14 or whatever. Then look at what you have been eating. A good idea is to write down everything you eat for two weeks – and no cheating. You might get quite a surprise.

To burn off the fat, one does not continue to eat the same as that which put it on in the first place – most likely being a diet high in carbohydrates, fried foods, takeaways, sweets, and alcohol. The science of nutrition is another subject and too complex to go into here but it can be simplified. And to simplify it, cut out all of those foods, increase your protein and eat more vegetables, salads (and not just lettuce, tomato, cucumber but a variety of foods to make it fun to eat, some fruit (many fruits have a higher carb level too), and plenty of water. Another fun way to drink water is using Fruit herbal tea; they can be drunk hot or cold and iced. Both ways are delicious. Fresh vegetable juices are excellent and also health-giving at the same time.

The above is not a ‘diet’ just to loose weight, but a way of living. It’s about making changes, even small ones, to your lifestyle. The weight will come off naturally, without even thinking about it.

It pays to know what you are eating, and if you wish to learn more there are numerous books to assist and courses that can be undertaken, depending on the level of knowledge you wish to acquire.

But above all, it’s about being able to live a long, healthy life – and enjoying the way you are.

It’s about being happy with yourself.

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