We make weight loss and getting fit too complicated. Yes, I know I’ve said that this is a complex medical disorder having to do with our genetics, biochemical, metabolic, hormonal, and psychological functions, but the tasks that must be done to fight these underlying dysfunctions are simple. The trouble we run into is that our lives are also complicated and complex.
We have family, jobs and careers, money issues, COVID 19, relationships, politics, education, medical needs, and the list goes on and on. These are things we have swirling about us and within us daily. These other issues often leave little time and energy to focus on our health and well being. We often put ourselves last on the to-do list.
If we could take simple steps each day, we would soon learn to beat the fat genes and put the medical condition of overweight into remission. So, what are these simple things?
1. Get adequate sleep.
So many people have atrocious sleep habits. They stay up past midnight and get up at 5am or 6am. Many people binge sleep on weekends and barely sleep during the week. Others toss and turn and awaken all throughout the night. Getting a handle on sleep is critical to our weight and overall health. There are methods to creating a good sleep pattern and these can be learned.
* Go to bed at the same hour each night
* Don’t eat within a few hours of going to bed
* Make the room totally dark
* Right before lying down, write a quick list of what’s on your mind and place it next to the bed. It clears our mind
* No screen us in the bedroom
* Learn relaxation techniques
2. Eat within the first hour of awakening
Get your motor running, protein source is helpful
3. Extra physical activity daily
Most of my patients state they are active. They are mistaken. They believe that their usual work and business constitutes exercise. It does not. Work activity is good, but unless you load trucks or do bicycle delivery you’re not getting intentional physical exercise.
4. Stay Hydrated
Most people are chronically dehydrated and get most of their fluids from treated water. By treated I mean, coffee, tea, soda, alcoholic beverages, and juices. Plain water drinking should be the mainstay of hydration and very limited amounts of the others
5. Eat small portions
We eat way too much. We should eat 4-6 small portion meals a day. This way we never take in excess calories and we utilize all the fuel we get when we get it. Eating once or twice a day is a recipe for obesity.
6. Get a check-up
Make sure all metabolic and hormonal functions are optimal. Check Thyroid, insulin, cortisol, Sex hormones ( Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone), and even an inexpensive genetic test like 23 and Me can shed some light on our ability to gain and lose body fat.
7. Get a Check up from the Neck up
Review how you feel about food, dieting, weight gain, snacking, food choices. If you struggle with how you think about food, a cognitive/behavioral plan can be helpful to change your thinking. It’s hard to change our weight if we can’t change our mind.
8. Reduce Carbohydrate intake, raise protein intake, and eat healthy fats
I advocate eating a balance of these 3 macronutrients. Don’t delete any one of them as some popular diets recommend. 9. Be Positive
It’s hard to accomplish any goal if we are living in a dark cloud
If opportunities were for pessimists they would have been called
Pessitunities. Get optimistic about your body and your future.
These simple things can change our lives. The hard thing is to decide to start incorporating them in our daily life. One by one these can become new habits. Start today or if it’s after 10pm, begin with getting a good night’s sleep and then pick one for tomorrow and get running. We make it all too complicated and confusing. Anyone of these simple tasks can be added to our already busy schedule.
Try it. If you focus on it and track it you will achieve it. Join me for my next discussion and I’ll see less of you then.