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In big and small ways, your weight influences your overall wellness. It can play a role in everything from your energy level to the health of your heart. In support of February’s American Heart Month, Advantage Care Health Centers is highlighting the relationship between healthy weight and total body health.
A Healthy Weight Decreases Major Health Risks
As you get older, it’s natural to put on a few pounds here or there. While this may not seem like a major issue, it can actually trigger other significant health problems.
1) Heart Disease
Your weight is closely linked to your risk of developing heart disease, which is now the leading cause of death among both men and women.
Losing weight is a preventative step anyone can take to improve heart health. If you are able to reduce your weight by as little as 10 percent, you can lower your risk of developing heart disease.
Being overweight puts you at an increased risk of developing hypertension. Excess weight forces your heart to work harder, potentially raising your blood pressure. Some studies have found that it’s possible to reduce your risk of developing hypertension by losing five percent of your body weight.
3) Type 2 Diabetes
Most people who are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are considered to be overweight. In fact, a waist size of more than 35 inches for women or 40 inches for men can raise the risk of type 2 diabetes and other health problems.
4) More pressure on your joints
A healthy weight also eases pressure on your joints and reduces the risk of arthritis. Just 10 additional pounds of body weight can add 30 to 60 more pounds of force on your knees when you walk.
3 Things you can do to Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
1) Eat a balanced diet
A balanced diet is one of the keys to a healthy lifestyle. Although every person has different dietary needs, adults should generally strive to eat a balanced diet, which is low in fats and sugars and high in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.
View the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, to see how many daily calories should be in your diet to achieve your recommended body weight.
2) Practice regular aerobic activity
The CDC recommends that adults perform two hours and 20 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercises every week. This works out to about 22 minutes per day or 50 minutes, three times a week.
Your weekly workouts could include a variety of activities, including brisk walking or muscle-strengthening exercises.
3) Be active every day
Generally speaking, adults can better maintain a healthy weight if they move more and sit less. For best results, it’s suggested that everyone performs a combination of moderate and vigorous exercises spread throughout the week.
As we celebrate Valentine’s Day this February, think about your own heart. Make a resolution to get your body into shape in support of American Heart Month.
Advantage Care Health Centers specializes in delivering comprehensive primary health care services. We provide our patients with improved access, coordinated care and enhanced patient/family involvement.
If you would like to schedule a health care screening, please contact us today.