Do you know that one in three kids, up to 15 years old, are overweight or obese nowadays? New generations seem to weigh more than what is normal for kids and they keep that weight while growing up, resulting in the constant increase of obesity rates. It is true that, globally, a significant increase is observed, particularly over the last decades. So, on the occasion of World Obesity Day, I decided to talk to you about some things that I think it is important to be careful of!
1. Focus on belly fat…
Fat mass that is around the area of the abdomen and the vital organs seems to increase the chances of getting a cardiovascular disease and particularly type 2 diabetes. If you are a woman, keep your waist’s circumference under 80 cm and if you are a man, keep it under 94 cm. Just think that even if there are two people with the same BMI (that is, similar weight and similar height), the person with the larger waist measurement (or more visceral fat) is more likely to develop a chronic disease compared to the one that accumulates fat mass in other parts of his body, like hips for example.
2. Aerobic exercise and not only!
I imagine you already know that aerobic exercise (like walking, running and swimming) helps with weight loss. But is it the best type of exercise? What you have to realize is that any kind of physical activity helps us lose weight and stay healthy. The important thing is to burn more calories than we consume when we want to lose weight and when we want to maintain our weight, we simply have to burn as many calories as we consume.
And something else…A lot of times, I hear people saying that they avoid weight training as they do not want to become too “muscular”. That is not the case though. Bodybuilding is a specific sport and those who train for it have a specific body type. This does not mean that by doing free weights or bodyweight exercises, we will get as muscular as a bodybuilder. Increasing muscle mass -which is boosted when we exercise with weights- helps us burn more fat and lose weight.
3. Try using an application
First of all, I believe that the calories that are mentioned under each one of my recipes, help you -even a little bit- calculate what you consume, depending on the recipe you are preparing. However, if you want to keep better track of the calories you consume and the calories you burn, you should use an application which will also give you the ability to check how many calories you burn according to your exercise intensity. Have you ever thought of that?
4. Do you consume beverages with extra calories?
I think the fact that it is very important for your health and skin to hydrate properly during the day, is something you already know. The most recent studies support that coffee and tea may help you stay hydrated even though they contain caffeine. Simply try to consume them with fewer calories, with less sugar, full-fat milk or whipped cream. For instance, if you drink your tea or coffee with sugar and you find it difficult to change this habit, simply try to not consume more than one of these beverages a day. So, the best way to avoid the extra calories that your coffee or beverage may contain is to make it by keeping these specific directions in mind.
The factors that can affect weight gain or loss are plenty. You do not have to follow one and only one technique, e.g. what many people usually do is to abruptly decrease their daily caloric intake. Everything has to do with your lifestyle and if you want to help fight obesity, you should first start taking care of yourselves and following a balanced lifestyle.
This article was written in collaboration with Kitchen Lab’s Sports Nutritionist Anna Maria Volanaki, MSc, BDA, SENr.
*The above information is based on published research findings.