8 effective ways to avoid obesity or excessive weight gain
Despite the fact that millions of people are concerned about how to avoid weight gain and maintain the normal size, obesity remains one of the most common complex diseases with the easiest treatment, management and prevention technique.
Obesity is a disorder which has to do with the excessive gain of body weight (weight gain) which in turn increases the risk of other health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, joint diseases, sleep apnoea etc.
The primary cause of weight gain is when you take in more calories than your body burns e.i. Consuming foods containing lots of calories and worse still not exercising. You should calculate your BMI at intervals to know if your weight is still within the normal range.
For some diseases, they have no cure while some even tend to progress to the point of death. But, in the case of obesity, there are known management and preventive techniques which are very much effective for maintaining the normal weight.
The question is, are you ready for it? If you understand what has been causing you to gain weight as we mentioned above, then, losing weight shouldn't really be an issue for you, unless you are not yet ready.
We have seen people try different fast routes in a bid to lose weight. Some use tummy belts, and some take to drinking various concoctions to achieve that but does all that work? There is high doubt about their effectiveness.
Avoiding obesity or weight gain takes discipline, determination and consistency
If you are already obese or you have gained lots of weight already and want to shed some bodyweight, this post is very much applicable to you too.
We are not just writing this just to have an article out there. But, knowing fully well that lots of people especially women (by the way, find out why women are more prone to weight gain), we want to help someone out there get an effective solution to their pressing concerns.
We want to give real answers to people on how to avoid obesity or weight gain.
So, if you are not ready to lose weight, you might want to stop reading at this point. But, if you are piqued, and you are prepared to start up your weight loss journey, read on to get guidelines on what to do.
Helpful tips to avoid weight gain and to lose weight
The tips provided here have worked for many people and still working today but have it in mind that you need determination, consistency and then patience to make it all work.
Read more on how to avoid obesity or excessive weight gain.
1. Watch the fats you eat
Isn't it logical that we start with food? There are a lot of things to talk about under this tip. First, let me drop this shocker for you; all fatty foods do not make you fat!
Cut down on certain fatty foods to avoid weight gain and further health complications
Okay, well some fats are bad for you, can make you gain weight and can make as well increase your risk for heart diseases. Those are trans fats and saturated fats.
Foods containing healthy fats like unsaturated fats, monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats and omega fatty acids are actually good for you.
In fact, consuming healthy fats like that contained in nuts and flaxseed can help you maintain a normal weight while keeping you healthy.
So while it is advised that you cut off foods containing trans fat and saturated fats, do not miss out on the healthy fats. In fact, experts have suggested that fats help keeps us fuller, which can help with weight loss.
2. Cut down on the intake of calories
Each time you hear people say you should avoid foods containing high calorie.
But what is a calorie?
A calorie is simply a unit for measuring energy. It doesn't actually measure weight loss directly. Rather, it measures energy; however, counting calories is one way to monitor weight loss.
Calories in the food we consume provide energy in the form of heat, which enables our body to function better. This means our body stores and burns calories as fuel.
High-calorie containing foods should be limited to avoid obesity or weight gain
This means if you consume foods containing more calories and is unable to burn off the calories, they get stored as body fats.
Also, while healthy foods are meant to provide calories and other essential nutrients for building muscles and bones, not all calories are healthy.
Some foods like soda only provide empty calories, i.e. they offer us calories only without any other nutritional value.
We can't stress the importance of exercising enough. I know many people don't like this part.
I know someone reading this would be tempted to skip this part, but if you are serious about your weight loss journey, you most definitely need this.
Why do we frown at the idea of working out? Do you think it's a punishment? Working out is one of the most effective ways to avoid weight gain, and it is unarguably one of the most effective ways to lose weight if you have already gained weight.
Are you ready to start your work-out session? Congratulations, you have signed up to commence your weight loss journey. Now, I have to point out something here; this isn't a day's journey.
Don't expect to see results just about two weeks after your routine exercising. As explained earlier weight loss requires determination, consistency and patience.
Exercise is a useful tool for weight loss. Working out regularly is one of the ways to avoid obesity or weight loss
Also, if you are trying to avoid weight gain, then you must make exercise a part of your life. It would be best if you had a routine for exercise.
Basically, it is required that you work out at least three times a week to lose weight. Each session should take at least 30 minutes.
Don't see exercise as a herculean task. You don't need to sign up for a gym if you are not up to it. I do mine from the confines of my room; you can do the same.
Put on your headset and go for that early morning run, jogging, cycling, pushup or whatever physical activity you chose to do to stay fit. Whichever you choose to do, ensure you go at it consistently.
If you are aiming at weight loss, you might get results earlier but just don't expect result until after at least three months. Your consistency determines how much weight you will lose.
You can work out at any time of the day; morning, afternoon or evening. Choose a time that works for you.
4. Eat slowly and eat off small plates
When you eat too quickly, of course, you are bound to consume more quantity of food within one minute compared to someone who is eating slowly.
An article on eatthis.com wrote that it takes your stomach about 20 minutes to send a signal to your brain that it has had enough.
So, imagine you eat slowly within that 20 minutes, it doesn't matter the quantity of food you consume, your brain will still get the signal that you are full and this will make you stop eating. Issue of taking many calories solved, right?
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You should also watch out for the food size or portion you dish out for yourself. This is why it is advised that you dish food with small-sized plates, so you don't get tempted to dish out large food quantities each time.
A study published in the journal "Obesity Science and Practice" revealed that when given the option to choose, obese people always opt for larger plates.
What does this mean?
It implies that the more food you consume, the more calories your body takes in and the more fat it stores.
5. Stop eating when it is not necessary
It seems we have been stressing much on food and eating, but we have to. This is because next to exercising, controlling food, and the things we consume is one of the things that have proved challenging to many of us.
Emotional eating will ruin your weight loss journey. Try practicing self control with food to avoid obesity or weight gain
Some people eat food anytime and anywhere it is served. Sometimes, you should say no even when you are offered especially when it a food type that won't help you in your weight loss journey.
Perhaps, I should add 'self-control' to determination, consistency and patience, which I listed earlier as the traits needed for anyone that wants to avoid weight gain.
Then, there are those who eat in response to their emotions. People in this group are called emotional eaters. They always have the urge to eat in response to emotional stress.
Women are even more prone to emotional eating and emotional eating is one of the factors that cause weight gain especially in women.
If you are an emotional eater and want to avoid weight gain, it might help to do any of these each time you get that urge to eat to suppress your emotions:
- Take a glass of water
- Chew a piece of gum
- Take a walk around your environment
Just create some other response that doesn't have to do with you churning down a plate of food.
6. Get enough sleep, Set aside time to relax
You need sleep and rest to maintain a normal weight. One of the ways to avoid weight gain is to ensure you get at least seven hours of sleep every night.
Poor sleep is a major risk factor for obesity and weight gain. Get enough sleep in order to avoid obesity or weight gain
According to Wake Forest researchers, dieters who get less than six hours of sleep put on two and half times more belly fat while those who sleep for up to 8 hours or more gain less belly fat.
7. Try intermittent fasting
While it is advisable to eat so that the body can absorb the needed nutrients for growth and normal functioning, staying off food on some occasions won't hurt.
Intermittent fasting is an effective weight loss diet plan for combating obesity and excessive weight gain.
Intermittent fasting focuses on limiting your snacks and meals to a specific time window, usually between 6 and 8 hours daily. For instance, you eat twice, eight hours apart in a day and abstain from eating the remaining 16 hours.
If you want to avoid obesity or weight gain, try intermittent fasting too!
Another type of intermittent fasting is where you abstain for food for 24 hours once or twice in a week. The idea is to cut the intake of calorie during those fasting periods.
Now, the question is, does intermittent fasting work?
Intermittent fasting most likely works for weight loss as many studies have shown that it may help with weight loss through different mechanisms.
8. Drink enough water!
Some people have developed the bad habit of substituting water with soda and other sugary or carbonated drinks when it should be the other way round.
You should know that water is critically needed for the normal functioning of your body systems. It also prevents the formation of kidney stones.
When it comes to avoiding weight gain, water also plays a role as it increases your chances of maintaining a normal weight.
According to an article published in Active Magazine, a study by German researchers found that taking six cups of cold water every day can boost your metabolism and cause you to burn 50 calories daily.
Not drinking sufficient water has potentially severe side effects such as reduced energy, slower metabolism, increased risk of stroke, poor skin condition and weight gain!
Obesity prevention for children
There has been so much discussion about obesity and weight loss for adults, but what about children? One way to avoid obesity or excessive weight gain in adulthood is to start right from childhood.
It is important that you help your kids maintain a normal weight as this helps to ensure a good state of general health and wellbeing.
Obesity poses health risks, not just for adults but for children as well. According to Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics, an estimated 13.7 million children and teens in the United States are obese.
Despite this high percentage, there are different ways to prevent obesity in children, just as it is with adults.
How do you avoid obesity or excessive weight gain in children?
One way you can avoid obesity or excessive weight gain in adulthood is by preventing it from childhood
This section will explore ways you can help your young one avoid obesity without focusing on the scale.
Breastfeeding your infant might help
As regards the role of breastfeeding in preventing obesity in children, studies have been mixed. Obviously, more research needs to be launched in this area.
However, one analysis carried out on 25 studies in 2014 showed that breastfeeding infants could be linked to a reduced risk of childhood obesity.
Pay attention to what your children eat
It is important that you start feeding your children with healthy diets right from the early years. Feed them with nutritious meals containing enough vegetables, fruits and proteins.
In this way, they maintain normal body weight and get the required food nutrient for growth. It would also help shape their eating habits even when they become adults.
Feed kids with the appropriate portion sizes of food
Don't overfeed your children. The excess food when not given off as energy usually gets stored as body fat.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the energy requirements for toddlers are small. Thus, toddlers don't even require large amounts of food.
Every inch of height for infants between ages 1 to 3 should equate roughly 40 calories of food.
Avoid stocking up the house with unhealthy foods
Children have a higher tendency to eat refined foods containing unhealthy sugar and fats. This is more reason why you should avoid bringing in such foods into the home.
Keep junk foods away from children; they are not good for health and can cause weight gain
Instead of stocking up your fridge with junks, fill it up instead with healthy foods like fruits. Leave out the less healthy ones as snacks on rare occasions.
Introduce fun physical activities to the kids
According to the World Health Organization, it is recommended that children and teenagers get at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day.
However, remember that kids don't like boring moments and might not entertain activities that seem to bore them.
This is the point where you have to get creative. Come up with games, sporting activities, gym classes, or outdoor chores that the kids would be excited about.
Children need enough sleep
Everyone needs sleep, but children need it even more. Studies have shown a link between sleep and obesity or weight gain. People (including children) who do not get enough sleep are more likely to gain more weight.
Help your children form healthy sleeping habits. According to the National Sleep Foundation, healthy sleeping habits include having a bedtime ritual, a sleep schedule and sleeping on a comfortable mattress and pillow.
Why must you avoid obesity?
We have talked so much about how to avoid obesity or excessive weight in both adults and children. But the question now, is why does it matter? Why is it important that you prevent obesity?
Obesity is bad and has been associated with many chronic health conditions which are difficult to treat. Some of the health conditions that have been associated with obesity include:
- metabolic syndrome
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
- Heart diseases
- Sleep apnoea
- non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
- mental health conditions
When you pay attention to your weight and make conscious efforts to keep it within the healthy range, it would help slow down the progression of such health conditions or even prevent their development.
So, what are you waiting for? Get started on your weight loss journey today!
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