Excess weight can impact your heart health and overall wellbeing. The good news is that there are proactive ways to manage weight through an active lifestyle and balanced diet. Not only will you look better, but you’ll feel better mentally and physically.
How much should I weigh?
The ‘right’ weight for your height is usually measured using the Body Mass Index, or BMI. This is a ratio of your height to weight – you can work it out by dividing your weight (in kilograms) by your height (in metres), and divide that figure by your height again. In other words, if you weigh 70kg and you are 1.75m tall, divide 70 by 1.75. The answer is 40. Then divide 40 by 1.75. That gives you 22.9, which is your body mass index. This number provides an indication of how healthy your weight is:
- ≺18.5 is underweight
- 18.5–25 is a healthy weight
- 25–30 is overweight
- >30 is obese
So what causes weight gain?
Weight change= calories in – calories out
When what goes in is higher in calories than what goes out in terms of calories burned, the scale starts creeping upwards.
Managing your weight is all about balance, ensuring that the calories you take in as a part of your diet are being burned off in the form of physical activity.
With time-poor modern lifestyles you need to make extra effort to prioritise exercise and plan healthy meals.
Eating foods from the various food groups and incorporating them into your diet can make a huge difference in your weight. Furthermore, you'll actually enjoy what you’re eating because it will taste so good!
How do fats fit in?
Contrary to popular belief, losing weight isn’t just about cutting fat out of your diet. In fact, fat plays an important role in a healthy diet no matter if you are trying to lose weight or maintain your weight. The key to fat is to be aware of the types of fat you are eating. This means trying to limit the intake of foods like cake, pastries, butter, cream and fatty meats and which are high in saturated fats and replacing these as much as possible with foods like nuts, avocado, margarine spreads and fish which contain unsaturated fats.
What can I do to try to lose weight?
Avoid ‘fad’ diets. ‘Fad’ diets are about extremes which often cannot be maintained, making them ineffective in the long-term. Instead of joining a ‘fad’ diet aim to lose 0.5–1kg a week by eating fewer calories a day as part of a healthy balanced diet. This in combination with regular physical activity can help to increase the likelihood that you will be able to maintain a healthier weight.
Top tips from Flora Pro Activ
- Keep an accurate food diary for a week noting everything – even snacks and drinks – to highlight areas where you could make the biggest savings in calories.
- Get and keep moving- Regular aerobic exercise (the kind that makes you mildly out of breath) will help you lose or maintain weight and tone your muscles.
- Eat a balanced and healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean meats.
- Small changes can make a difference. Try to limit saturated fat intake by swapping full fat milk for a lower fat variety or using soft vegetable based spreads such as Flora Pro Activ instead of butter. These reduced fat spreads are not only a viable alternative, but they can actively help you lower your cholesterol.
- See an Accredited Practising Dietitian for more tailored personal advice on improving your diet and lifestyle.
Harvard School of Public Health. How to get to Your Healthy Weight.
Harvard School of Public Health.Obesity consequences: Health Risks.