Focus on Health, Not Weight!
Re-thinking your attitude about your weight can improve your health. Being overweight can increase some health risks, but so can many fad diets and roller coaster weight loss programs.
People who choose to smoke so they won’t overeat also can add to their health woes. Others who choose to starve themselves in an effort to be thin can diminish their mental and physical capacities. Eating disorders can be deadly.
That doesn’t mean that overeating is recommended or that being a couch potato is okay. What it does mean is that a healthy weight can be influenced by many factors, including lifestyle and genetics. The emphasis is on being healthy – eating a variety of foods, being active and maintaining self esteem – rather than the need to be thin. To learn more about establishing a healthy weight, here are some tips you can follow:
- Stop focusing on weight; decide to enjoy life, rather than always thinking, “When I lose 10 pounds, I will…”
- Plan to eat three meals a day; breakfast is especially important, because it truly does break the fast and provides much needed nourishment.
- Plan snacks to appease hunger in between meals; reserving part of a meal, like fruit, veggies and dip or even dessert, can appease the appetite without adding too many extra calories.
- Learn to recognize your body’s signals: eat when you are hungry; stop eating when you are full. People who can learn to stop eating when they are full soon recognize that they feel better when they do.
- Learn to eat and enjoy a variety of foods, including whole grains; lean meats, poultry and fish; dairy products; fruits and vegetables. Limit fats.
- Add activities that you enjoy to each day. Children usually look forward to recess; adults need that time and activity as well.
- Choose activities that you enjoy, otherwise there will be a temptation to skip activities that can contribute to mental and physical health.
- Allow time for stress relief; even a few minutes of relaxation – let your body go limp, think about something pleasant – can be beneficial.
- Be positive; accept yourself and your body shape or size.
- Focus on health… not weight!