BY Joe Palumbo, IFBB Pro
Warning: what you are about to read is the cold hard truth and not intended for those who live by excuses…
There is a danger that many people are completely unaware of. Others, who know of it, refuse to accept it. We live in freighting times. The National Center for Health Statistics cites 37.9% (2013-2014) of adults 20 years and over with obesity. The percentage of adults 20 years and over with being overweight, including obesity, is an astounding 70.7% (2013-2014).
Obesity is a classification of being 20% or more above ideal weight. Determined by standardized tables, the excess weight is in the form of body fat, not lean muscle mass. For example, if your ideal weight is 170 (according to the standardized tables) and your actual weight is 205, you are not “chubby” or “big-boned”, you are clinically classified as OBESE by the medical field. Many people incorrectly use the term “overweight” when it is, technically, obesity. As a rough guide for adults, a Body Mass Index (BMI) of less than 20 reflects being underweight. A BMI over 25 is overweight, and over 30 is obese. BMI is calculated by taking the weight of the individual in kilograms and dividing by the square of the height in meters. I’ll spare you the metric-math, but for the above example, it’s about 30 pounds.
Science is constantly learning the impact that stress has on your overall health. Obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, heart attacks, and stroke have been linked to stress. Let‘s face it, there are many elements that factor into our health. How many strikes are you willing to have against you? Genetics, occupation, environment and activity level are all involved. Now look at some good news. Here are some simple facts on how exercise can easily change your destiny.
A U.S. National Institute of Health Diabetes Prevention Program studied people at high risk for diabetes and heart disease. Those who underwent intensive lifestyle change lowered their cardiovascular disease risk factors more than those taking diabetes medication. One of the changes they made included 150 minutes a week of moderate physical activity (such as walking). High blood pressure, triglycerides and cholesterol levels all decreased significantly, and the HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels rose!
Look at the Facts*:
Obesity is a chronic, lifelong condition that is the result of an environment of caloric excesses and physical inactivity.
Research has shown that getting 30-60 minutes of physical activity 3 times a week can help lower blood pressure, cholesterol and keep your weight down.
A person’s fitness level was a more important predictor of death than established risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes.
Obesity accounts for 18% of deaths among Americans between the ages of 40 and 85, according to research from the American Journal of Public Health.
Your life insurance premium typically depends on your risk category.
Your risk category depends on height and weight charts, as well as several other factors.
Heart diseases are the second leading cause of death for people between 45-64. It is the highest for people 65 and older. Many first-time heart attacks or strokes are fatal or disabling. Prevention is critical. High cholesterol is responsible for 70% of heart disease. The death rate for heart attack patients who participated in a formal exercise program was reduced by 20-30%
Your genes do not have be your destiny. In many cases, obesity can be prevented or managed with a combination of diet, physical activity, and medication.
Becoming more active can lower your blood pressure by as much as 4-9 points
Often, people live by misconceptions and misinformation. Ultimately, these are nothing more than excuses. “I just don’t have the time” or “you can’t fight genetics” are some of the more common. Through all my years of professional status in physical fitness and personal training, I think I’ve heard it all. It never ceases to amaze me what people believe. How can you not find the time to possibly add years to your life, prevent a heart attack or stop diabetes in its tracks. It’s probably clear that I am a big advocate on physical fitness, but I firmly believe in training your body as well as your mind. Although there are many things that we have no control over, fitness is not one of them. I believe that if any of this information got through to even one person, then maybe I just helped that one person save their life! Do not become a statistic. It’s never too late start. Be sure to consult with your physician and start an approved exercise program today.
Diabetes is the third leading cause of death in the United States after heart disease and cancer.
Type 2 diabetes; A form of diabetes that typically appears first in adulthood, is exacerbated by obesity and an inactive lifestyle.
There is a direct relationship between the degree of obesity and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.