LOSE WEIGHT NOW!

LOSE WEIGHTDo you want to lose weight?

You might be asking should  I  weigh or not to weigh, that is the question. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of knowing one’s outrageous weight, or to take arms against a sea of bulges by simply ignoring the scale and trying to eat less and exercise more. For some of us, the scale is a tool. For others, it’s the enemy.

LOSE WEIGHT

So let’s say your plan is to Lose 1lb a Week

Some health and fitness professionals have made a compelling case for ignoring the scale, saying that measuring one’s percentage of body fat is the most accurate way to track one’s fitness level.

It indicates a healthy body composition, regardless of height and weight. I agree that you should know your body fat as a baseline for fitness and fatness.

Here are some body fat guidelines according to the American Council on Exercise:

Body Fat Percentage for Women:

  • Athlete: 14-20 percent
  • Fit: 21-24 percent
  • Average: 25-31 percent
  • Obese: > 32 percent

Body Fat Percentage for Men:

  • Athlete: 6-13 percent
  • Fit: 14-17 percent
  • Average: 18-24 percent
  • Obese: > 25 percent

So why bother weighing yourself at all? When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s important to use any indication you can get that your efforts are paying off. It can take a couple of weeks before you see any difference in body fat. Your weight will change more quickly. Besides, there are relatively inexpensive scales that give you both your actual weight and your percentage of body fat.

My personal prejudice is to weigh yourself at least once or twice a week. I do, and I find that facing my weight on a regular basis helps me stay motivated. Believe me, there have been times when I’ve dreaded getting on that scale. But I do it anyway because no matter what it says, I feel relief. I find it liberating. Why? Because now I know where I am and what I need to do next. It helps me maintain a healthy weight. And I have one of those scales that also measures fitness to fatness, so I am able to keep track of that at the same time. I check my body fat every week or two.

In my practice I have helped hundreds of people lose weight. And many of them initially fight me about getting on the scale; and I understand this because I know that terror. Part of the process of losing weight is to prepare oneself to do it. If you are not psychologically ready to lose, stepping on the scale can be a real turnoff and actually deter you from losing weight. But once you’re ready, facing that number can jump-start your weight-loss program and keep you going.

I give my clients a baseline of their body fat percentage and get them to use the scale. Then we set up a diet and exercise plan. You can lose weight by diet alone. But dieting can reduce muscle mass along with fat. This becomes ever more important as we age. We can lose as much as 6 pounds of muscle tissue per decade as we age. And metabolism can slow down as much as 3 percent per decade. You can see that if left unchecked, you’re on a slow boat to obesity. Adding an exercise program may be all you need to turn this process around. Cardio exercise burns calories, and strength training raises your metabolism and builds lean muscle mass while you are losing. Losing about 1 percent body fat a month and one to two pounds a week is considered safe and realistic. Here’s the winning combination. Reduce calorie intake with diet, do cardio most days to burn calories, and strength train at least a couple of days a week to build muscle mass and increase metabolism.

So, I’ve made my case for using the scale as a tool, and I hope you’ll try it when you are ready. Regardless, to be or not to be at a healthy weight should not be in question.

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Scary Obesity Study

 

Mirabai Holland Picking Organic Foods at the Sarasota Farmer's Market

Mirabai Holland says “What a wonderful melon!”

Fitness=Longevity. We all know that. But a *scary obesity study proves we’re ignoring the wakeup call. Why will there be a 33 % increase in obesity and a 130% in severe obesity in the next 20 years?

There’s an atmosphere of over indulgence created by the people who want to sell us stuff. More is better. Bigger is a sign of your success. It’s UPSCALE and we’re taking it quite literally. Hey I like stuff, but it’s gone too far. And it’s gotten uncomfortable.

Between the human cost in quality of life and the astronomical predictions for health care costs, a realistic approach to sustainable wellness has to be the next trend.

It’s like global warming. If we don’t do something about it, we’re done for.

The Institute of Medicine recognizes this cultural trend and has come up with some pretty stiff recommendations for government, corporations and individuals. They want to establish guidelines for healthy meals in schools, restaurants and public events. They want corporations to start marketing healthier food to children, and they want us all to exercise daily.

Exercise more, sure. Eat healthier, a no brainer but to actually find the sustainable way to keep doing it and then to instill the people you love around you to do it too goes much deeper.

Here are a couple of things you can start with. Fresh produce, organic if you can afford it. It can get pricey. Read labels. I remember going to the grocery store with my mom a few years before she died. She thought of herself as a gourmet but in the store,

I realized she never read labels. She ate stuff that had high sugar, fat and preservatives in it. I said “Hey Ma, take a look at this tomato sauce you just put in your cart”; it’s got a lot of sugar in it. Empty calories for what? Haven’t you noticed that when you eat stuff with sugar you just want more and more of it. Break the chain of craving. To her credit, she listened and changed about half the things she was eating. Better late than never!

Then there’s exercise.If you are going to exercise be active in a way that brings some joy into your life.

Find a few physical activities that you can do consistently. Just mix it up, walk with a friend and gossip, play a game, dance to music you like, and keep on doing it for the rest of your life.

*http://www.ajpmonline.org/webfiles/images/journals/amepre/AMEPRE_33853-stamped2.pdf

For more info on at home exercise programs for women please visit www.mirabaiholland.com

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Exercising For Diabetes: Good Fat Burns Calories while Muscles Burn Sugar By Mirabai Holland © 2012


Since March is Diabetes Month I wanted you to know about a recent discovery that is poised to be real game changer.
We all know inactivity and excess body fat are risk factors for Diabetes.
But did you know you have two kinds of fat, bad and good, white and brown?
White fat just sits there and is, well, just fat. It’s the bad fat. It puts you at higher risk for diseases like diabetes. Brown fat on the other hand, doesn’t just sit there. It’s metabolically active. It burns calories, lots of calories. It’s the good fat. (Yes, there is such a thing as good fat.) And exercise can turn white fat brown!
A recent study* by the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School shows that exercise produces a hormone called Irisin that turns white fat brown. This may be a reason people who exercise regularly burn more calories, even hours after exercising, than sedentary people. Doesn’t that make you want to get up, make some irisin, turn that white fat brown and burn a bunch of calories? Well if that’s not enough here’s something else.
Exercise helps regulate blood glucose levels. It helps get excess glucose out of the blood and into the muscle tissue where it’s burned as fuel. It really works. In fact many diabetics who exercise regularly find they need to take a lot less insulin. Some have even been able to eliminate their need for insulin with daily exercise.
So between the calorie-burning brown fat, and the sugar-sucking effect on muscle tissue, I’d say exercise is a no-brainer for those of us at risk for diabetes.

* http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature10777.html

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