According to WHO, worldwide obesity has nearly tripled since 1975. Close to 40% (1.9 billion) of the adult population (18 and above) are defined overweight, of which 13% (650 million) were defined obese.
In 2019 over 340 million children and adolescents (5-19) were overweight or obese and 39 million of them were under age of 5. The definition of overweight and obesity is based on Body Mass Index (BMI) and you can calculate yours for example HERE. SAD FACT: obesity causes many health problems and each year, at least 2.8 million people die as a result of being overweight or obese. HAPPY FACT: obesity is preventable.
So, how to loose weight then? The principle is very simple.
THE FIRST LAW OF THERMODYNAMICS
"The law of conservation of energy states that the total energy of an isolated system is constant; energy can be transformed from one form to another, but can be neither created nor destroyed." (reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_law_of_thermodynamics)
To put it simple: CALORIE "The calorie is a unit of energy defined as the amount of heat needed to raise a quantity of water by one degree of temperature." Food has calories. You should find calories in product packaging or web. METABOLISM Metabolism is the set of life-sustaining chemical reactions in organisms. Metabolic reactions has two categories:
catabolism: the breaking down of compounds that happens if you eat too little.
anabolism: the building up of compounds that happens when you eat more than your Basal metabolic rate requires.
Basically: catabolism releases energy, and anabolism consumes energy.
Consuming more calories than you burn causes overweight and obesity. You can use calorie calculator to find out the approximate calories your body needs per day.
THE MAIN 3 RULES OF LOOSING WEIGHT 1st rule: there are no magic pills, diets or programmes that will make you loose weight significantly faster than The First Law of Thermodynamics allows. Now THAT is the secret that the people interested in your BIG fat cash pile do not want you to realise. 2nd rule: if you wanna raise the odds of reaching and staying in healthier shape for good, you better loose weight gradually It means you need to start today if you wanna be in better shape next year. We are often looking for the fastest possible ways to get what we want right now. Unfortunately, fast ways usually are the last ways to achieve our goals. In nutrition diet practically means lifelong eating habits. Diet should not be used to describe short-term weight loss campaigns. 3rd rule: "Six packs are made in the kitchen." Restricting your calorie intake is much, much more effective than excercising what comes to loosing weight. Sure, excersising is very important but in practise the effect is surprisingly small in weight loss. It is pure math based on The First Law of Thermodynamics: Which one would be easier: jog 40mins or not eat a donut. Although combining them both would get the best results, doing either of them can be very hard. But why?
WHY WE EAT TOO MUCH?
Simply put: our brains (and body) have evolved to perceive weight gain as a success. The ability to store body fat has helped us surviving. Our brains are fundamentally similar to those of our ancestors who lived 50,000-100,000 years ago. Only the environment has changed. Our Stone Age brains does not understand the abundance we have today. The same feel-good-hormones like dopamine still give us a rush when eating energy dense junk food. In addition to gaining weight, the bad news is that over the longer term, it will damage our brain’s reward systems turning us "junk food junkies".
The most important thing for successful weight loss is internalizing the facts and finding the lasting intrinsic motivation. The most significant factor is HOW we are motivated. Depending on our personality there is basically two ways to find long-lasting motivation. Fear "If you don´t loose weight, you will suffer more and die younger." Reward "If you loose your weight, you will live longer and stay healthier." "..., you will get a lot of attention with your great healthy body." (hedonic) To raise the probabilities for the emergence of sustainable motivation both messages needs to be optimized based on personality and by using psychology like behavioral "nudging". Finding the motivation is the key for successful weight loss. And for keeping the motivation, it is important to start by taking small steps. NEVER go all in at once. (NOTE: more introvert people will often rather train alone or in small groups unlike more extrovert people.)
10 CLASSIC EXCUSES Here are ten quite common excuses - the classic signs that motivation has not (yet) been found:
1. "My overweight is genetic." That is actually possible - but to turn on, genes need external environmental factors like eating habits. Genes might make loosing weight harder, but according to The First Law of Thermodynamics, you would be a scientific wonder for not to be able loose weight with well counted calorie intake.
2. "I have slow metabolism. I poop only once in every two days..." This excuse often include two classic misunderstandings. a) At the cellular level, slow metabolism does not have a very dramatic effect on weight loss. b) In addition, that gastric emptying once in every two days can be just normal, eating more fiber rich foods and drinking more water might boost it up.
3. "I don´t care! You only live once!"
Ok. But how about your friends and relatives? Do they care about you? And do you wanna live your only life more sick?
4. "I am just so hungry all the time."
Trust me. Your greyline and leptin secretion will adapt in just a few days.
5. "I ´m too busy ."
Cook the portions for the next days ready beforehand and take the stairs instead of elevator. Start standing when using computer. We all can create time for the things we are motivated to do. You can also count how many hours a day you spend watching TV or surfing on the web..? Finding time means prioritizing your doings. 6. "It´s too expensive."
Let´s count how much money we are spending on eating out or buying junk food and sodas. Healthy does not mean expensive (and vice versa). Finding money means prioritizing the spending.
7. "I wanna eat what I like." Ok. Me too. Not just whenever I like. 8. "I wanna be in a better condition when hitting the gym." If we skip this mind blowing paradox and forget that "six packs are made in the kitchen", as a gym member I can guarantee that every intelligent gym goer respects and supports every "fitless" person that have started working out. Of course there are jerks everywhere but think about how hard it is to them living with such a low social intelligence quotient. 9. "I´ll start tomorrow."
Pretty sure you won´t. Why? Because this time tomorrow is TODAY and if you never start TODAY you will never start.
10. "I can´t."
I feel you, changing the habits is super hard. Start by taking small steps. Be progressive. Go for a walk now. Replace one glass of soda with a glass of water. Next week walk two times instead of one and replace two soda glasses with water. HOW TO LOOSE WEIGHT - 5 STEPS
1. Don´t think loosing weight as a fast short-time project. Think of it as a lifestyle change.
2. Process different perspectives to find your true motivation. 3. Find out how much calories you need and start counting them.
4. Start by taking small steps. Don´t try to change too much at once. 5. Start today. May the Force be with you.