Think you know all about your weight?
Sometimes you might not have control over how much you weigh. And other times you try everything in the world, and there is still no change on your weighing scale. Why is it happening?
Here are 7 things you need to know about your weight.
1. Your body shape doesn’t define if you’re healthy or not
Rejoice, people! There is hope in the world. A research published in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey revealed that being fat wasn’t a sign of being unhealthy. The study surveyed 5440 adults on the basis of blood pressure, cholesterol, and other metabolic/diabetic indicators. They found out that more than 50% of the participants in the overweight group were at a healthy metabolic level. Even a third of the obese group fared well on health scores.
So, yes, you can be healthy if you are skinny or chubby.
2. It’s all about fat cells
Everybody has fat cells. The number of fat cells keep growing in our body till we hit puberty. It then remains constant throughout adulthood.
About 10% of these cells die each year but they are immediately restored to maintain a constant number. Did you know an average human have around 30 billion fat cells?
The sad news is even if we lose weight, the number of fat cells do not reduce in number. But they do deplete in size. Heavy fat cells slows down your metabolic rate. The heavier your fat cells are, the tougher it is to lose weight.
3. Sugar is addictive
An interesting study by Queensland University of Technology reveals that sugar affects the brain in the same manner as cocaine. It further added that a sugar addiction should be treated the same way as drug abusers.1
The more sugar you eat, the tougher it gets to satisfy your need to eat something sweet. This would make you consume more sugary food.
4. Prepare yourself for a weight plateau
Losing weight is a tricky business. First, you take a lot of effort to lose a few kilos. You follow a healthy diet and make cautious choices with portion size. You hit the gym five times a week. You finally see results on the weighing scale. So, you continue doing the same thing. But this time, the weighing scale refuses to budge. What’s going wrong?
Congratulations, you hit a weight plateau.
This happens because you lose muscle along with weight. Muscles help to burn fat. With a dip in body muscle, your metabolic rate slows down. That’s why losing weight becomes much harder. To overcome this, you would need to do more physical activity than you initially did for further weight loss. Don’t give up. Just keep pushing!
5. People around you matter
If you’re thinking about making changes about your weight, then you might want to look at the people around you.
A study reveals that if one spouse is obese, the chance of the other becoming obese almost doubles. Unhealthy habits are contagious. A partner’s lifestyle would definitely influence the lifestyle choices of the other.2 Now, don’t go blaming your significant other just yet.
Healthy decisions are contagious as well. When one partner starts to make conscious healthy decisions, it impacts the other partner as well. If your partner decides to cycle every morning, and make nutritious food with leafy greens, the habits would eventually rub on you as well.
6. Stress adds to your weight
You had a stressful day at work. You get back home and you know what’s going to relax you. A leftover birthday cake that you’ve been dreaming about all morning. It’s a craving for carbohydrates.
Stressful situations push people to overeat and indulge in unhealthy carbs. There have been several studies that linked stress and obesity. Besides being notoriously delicious, consuming carbs would start a chain of chemical reactions in your brain. The satisfaction you receive at the end of a carb feast is because of a boost in brain serotonin.
Serotonin is a chemical known to affect your moods. Depressed people have been found to have low levels of serotonin.
Stress eating can be tackled with finding effective ways to relieve your stress. Go for a walk, listen to uplifting music, or even talk to a friend.
7. It’s in the genes
You can blame your genes for being overweight, says a study. The womb environment plays a big role in determining the future health of the child. If an expectant mother’s food or lifestyle habits has chances of developing diabetes or heart diseases, it influences a risk of health concerns for the child. This includes metabolic problems related to obesity.
The study took in 49 women who had taken up gastrointestinal bypass surgery. The study revealed that children born after their mother’s surgery had reduced birth weight and were three times less likely to become obese when compared to siblings born before the surgery.3
But you can’t blame your genes for failing to lose weight, says another study.4 So, don’t quit on exercise and healthy eating.
Now you have a better picture about your weight. All these facts are important to know before you start your weight loss journey. So, get going!
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||Shariff, Masroor, Maryka Quik, Joan Holgate, Michael Morgan, Omkar L. Patkar, Vincent Tam, Arnauld Belmer, and Selena E. Bartlett. “Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor modulators reduce sugar intake.” PloS one 11, no. 3 (2016): e0150270.|
|2.||↑||Cobb, Laura K., Mara A. McAdams-DeMarco, Kimberly A. Gudzune, Cheryl AM Anderson, Ellen Demerath, Mark Woodward, Elizabeth Selvin, and Josef Coresh. “Changes in Body Mass Index and Obesity Risk in Married Couples Over 25 Years The ARIC Cohort Study.” American Journal of Epidemiology 183, no. 5 (2016): 435-443.|
|3.||↑||Guénard, Frédéric, Yves Deshaies, Katherine Cianflone, John G. Kral, Picard Marceau, and Marie-Claude Vohl. “Differential methylation in glucoregulatory genes of offspring born before vs. after maternal gastrointestinal bypass surgery.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110, no. 28 (2013): 11439-11444.|
|4.||↑||Livingstone, Katherine M., Carlos Celis-Morales, George D. Papandonatos, Bahar Erar, Jose C. Florez, Kathleen A. Jablonski, Cristina Razquin et al. “FTO genotype and weight loss: systematic review and meta-analysis of 9563 individual participant data from eight randomised controlled trials.” bmj 354 (2016): i4707.|