We decide to lose weight for many reasons. Whether it be wanting to look better in our swim suit at the beach next summer or getting fit for some grand adventure, the reasons are numerous. However, the best reason by far is to benefit to our health.
Health experts associate excess poundage with numerous adverse health conditions. Coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and diabetes are but a few of the conditions that you are at higher risk of developing by being overweight. The good news is, these risks can be greatly reduced by losing excess fat and living a healthier lifestyle.
Overweight people are more likely to develop high blood pressure, high levels of triglycerides, and high cholesterol. These factors put them at a greater risk for coronary artery disease, heart attack, and stroke.
By losing five to ten percent of their body weight, they can greatly reduce the risk of having a heart attack or a stroke. For a 200 pound person, this means losing as little as 10 pounds can significantly reduce the risk of these life threatening conditions.
Over 85 percent of the people suffering from type 2 diabetes are overweight. While it is not known exactly why these people are more prone to developing this disease, it may be that being overweight causes the cells to become resistant to the hormone insulin.
By losing weight, you can lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. If you already have this disease, losing weight and becoming more physically fit can help control the blood sugar levels, preventing or delaying complications.
Another concern is a condition known as metabolic syndrome. A person is considered to have metabolic syndrome it they have three or more of the following conditions.
High fasting blood glucose (sugar)
High blood pressure
Low levels of HDL (good cholesterol)
A large waistline
People with metabolic syndrome have approximately twice the risk of developing heart disease and five times the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Approximately 27 percent of American adults are believed to have this condition.
Metabolic syndrome may be preventable through weight management and physical activity. For those that already have this condition, losing weight and becoming more physically fit may help prevent or the delay the onset of of these conditions.
These are but a few of the risks you take by being overweight. Other conditions include sleep apnea, gallbladder disease, fatty liver disease, and cancer.
For overweight people, lowering their body weight by as little as 5 percent and maintaining this weight loss, may reduce the risks of several of these conditions. They can achieve this by eating a healthy diet and participating in at least 30 minutes of physical activity daily.