Sometimes, particularly in these climes and precarious times, we pay little or no attention to what we weigh and largely to what we eat. Times like these constrain us to our residences than usual, leading to a heightened tendency to be sedentary and consume more food than we usually would do. Some of us have up to six-square meals, supported by quick snacks in between meals with little or no physical activity. Your body responds with a corresponding increase and you go “So what if I added some extra weight? Do I look overweight? Can I end up obese?”

I’m not obese, I’m just short for my weight” someone once said.

It comes off for a good laugh, but it is a practical comment often received. The assessment of your weight takes into consideration your height and your Body Mass Index (BMI). These details interplay as shown below:

BMI = Weight (kg) ÷ Height2 (m) 2. (The ideal range is between 18.5 and 24.9)

Being obese is an indication that you have 20% or more weight load above your ideal weight. Generally, excess weight lays the foundation for nearly every degenerative disease. People with obesity are:

  • 3X more likely to have heart disease,
  • 4X more likely to suffer from high blood pressure, and
  • 5X more likely to develop diabetes and elevated blood cholesterol.

There is also the predisposition to develop certain cancers – cancer of the colon, rectum, prostate and breast amongst others. Having excess weight is like sitting on a time bomb – you just never know which one of these diseases will explode unto the scene.

What must I do to keep my weight under check?

The first step is the will to control your weight. Begin with focus on your meals – prioritizing quality over quantity or appeal. Choose more of high fibre foods, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and support this with a healthy consumption of water. You might also be accustomed to making repeated trips to fridge. Stock it up with healthy options such as carrots, diced fruits – refrigerated and ready to munch.

In addition, get moving! Take brisk walks daily for at least 30 minutes. Engage your body in other activities that are rhythmic such as jogging, skipping, or cycling – doing these within the ambits of the social distancing requirements. Your body benefits with improved blood circulation and burns those calories you earnestly want to get rid of.

On final note friends, remember that you can blame the times we are in for the weight gain. However in the end, the choice is always yours. Encourage yourself to maintain an ideal weight. It is a very helpful and healthy thing to do.

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