According to Julia Valentour, program coordinator for the American Council on Exercise, there are many chronic diseases associated with obesity, including cardiovascular disease; several types of cancer, including colon, endometrial, breast and prostate; high blood pressure; muscular-skeletal problems; diabetes; stroke; and metabolic syndrome.
Physical inactivity also can contribute to osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, liver and gall bladder diseases, sleep apnea, gynecological problems, as well as anxiety and depression.
Not a cheery forecast.
But on the flip side, exercise offers so many incredible benefits, according to Valentour
, â€œincluding a reduced risk of many chronic diseases, improved cardiovascular health, lower blood pressure, better cholesterol profiles, decreased depression and anxiety, and overall wellness and better cognitive function.â€
added studies consistently have shown that people who work out live an average of two to four years longer than those who donâ€™t.
added the first step is to make sure youâ€™re healthy enough to exercise. â€œCheck with your doctor first if you have cardiovascular, pulmonary or metabolic diseases or risk factors for these diseases,â€ she
said. â€œYou may need to be on a medically supervised exercise program.â€
â€œThe main thing is that you have to expend more calories than you take in,â€ said Valentour, â€œand that will create a negative caloric balance that will result in weight loss.â€ She recommended visiting mypyramid.gov to get the lowdown on what a healthy diet should include or work with a registered dietitian to overhaul your diet.
And make sure you donâ€™t bite off more than you burn calorically.
A slip of the lip does lead to a generously padded hip.
Valentour recalls a former student who was perplexed by her inability to lose weight.
daily diet look liked, and the student said she
started each day with a large vanilla latte.
The student was blissfully unaware that daily latte cost her
Morale to this story: Be conscious of not only what you eat, but also what you drink.
Alcoholic beverages and sodas, too, can thwart you in your quest to create that negative caloric balance.
Although we inevitably want the pounds to melt off like a winter thaw, remember that slowly losing weight is the healthiest way.
Patience is a virtue in this arena, and Valentour
suggests losing no more than one to two pounds a week.
is no-nonsense in her
advice: â€œDonâ€™t make excuses to skip exercise.