Aspirus: Manage your weight the healthy way
For the Tomahawk Leader
WISCONSIN – In observation of National Healthy Weight Week, Aspirus provided tips for maintaining a healthy weight.
“It can be tempting to yo-yo your wellness routine between seasons of restful over-indulgence and a more mindful, active lifestyle,” Aspirus stated. “This could look like enjoying an abundance of delicious food and well-deserved rest over the holidays or on vacation, then switching to the other end of the spectrum with a strict diet and rigorous exercise schedule.”
Aspirus said that, in the short-term, this constant flip-flop in routine may help you strike up a sense of balance in your life and control over your weight, but this all-too-common pattern of weight fluctuations, or weight cycling, can have damaging effects on the body, including unintentional weight regain.
A study from the University of California-Los Angeles published in the National Library of Medicine (www.pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17469900/) found that one-third to two-thirds of people who lose weight will gradually end up back at their starting weight or heavier.
According to a study in the Journal of Obesity & Metabolic Syndrome (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6489475/), weight cycling can also have adverse long-term effects, such as an increased risk for eating disorders and other psychological disorders, as well as comorbidities such as obesity, hypertension and type 2 diabetes.
“To maintain a healthy weight, the key is to stick to a plan that focuses on nutrition and regular activity as part of your everyday life,” said Samantha Igo, Health & Wellness Coach for Aspirus Ideal Weight Solution. “People may want the quick results of a restrictive diet, but without a commitment to lifestyle change, it’s not a weight loss that will be sustained.”
Here are some tips from the National Institute of Aging and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for maintaining a healthy weight:
- Watch your diet. Eating healthy is all about balance, so make sure you choose a healthy and realistic eating pattern for your lifestyle and overall dietary preferences. According to Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025 (bit.ly/3rMFKoH), a healthy eating plan has mostly vegetables, protein, some fruits, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products. It limits unhealthy fats, cholesterol, sodium, and added sugars.
- Get moving. An active lifestyle with regular physical activity can help you maintain your weight, but it also has other health benefits, such as reducing your risk for chronic diseases and reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety. The exact amount of physical activity varies from person to person, but the CDC suggests working your way up to 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity, or an equivalent mix of the two each week. Find what works for you and stay consistent with it.
- Stay on course. Self-monitor your diet, weight and activity to help track your progress. Keeping a journal can help you recognize if your schedule or certain behavioral patterns are affecting the results that you are seeing. Keeping a close eye on your progress can help you see what is and isn’t working and then adjust your plan accordingly.
The Ideal Weight Solution program is available at various locations in the Aspirus Health system. For more information about the program, visit www.aspirus.org/ideal-weight-solution. To register for a free informational appointment (required to start the program), call 715-847-2057, option 2.