By Stephen Osei-Owusu
The weight loss craze is becoming a staple in popular culture. Everyone wants to be thin. But the question is, how successful does a person become after embarking on such a cause? The answer is that only a few people become winners in achieving their weight loss dream or are able to maintain their weight loss for the rest of their lives.
Of course there are yoyos or fad diets on the market that promise a weight loss of 10lbs in one week, but ideally these kinds of diets are only a quick fix to losing weight. Therefore, you should not count on this approach as a long-term goal in shedding off those extra pounds.
I strongly believe that part of the solution to losing weight is respecting your body and listening to the inner voice that tells you to stop eating when you are full from that banku and okra soup or eba with pepper soup. Ignoring our inner voice puts our body in jeopardy.
For instance, the hormones leptin and ghrelin function cooperatively when your body is in good condition. Leptin is a hormone produced in the fat cells in our body that tells the brain to control our desire for food and how to burn the stored calories in our body. Gherlin does the exact opposite. It is the hormone that makes you feel hungry and is produced in the stomach.
So here is the trick, when a person over eats on multiple occasions and becomes overweight, these hormones become less sensitive, especially leptin, which fails to signal the brain that you have had enough food. As your overeating habits continue, coupled with lack of sleep, both hormones skyrocket. As a result, you will continue to gain weight and may develop complications related to obesity, like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
The reality is that when you begin to listen to your body you become more comfortable with food. Respecting your body and inner voice can be a challenge sometimes when you are in a difficult situation that involves emotions or if you are out with friends at a restaurant, a house party, or even at a club. By the end of the night you may find that you have consumed more calories than you should. Alcohol is loaded with calories. It is important to be a smart eater and drinker.
Tips on living a healthier lifestyle include:
- Engaging in physical activity—Running 30 minutes a day coupled with some light weight lifting
- Decreasing Stress levels – Know your stressors and seek help if needed
- Eat a balanced diet, sleep well, and drink LOTS of water
Stephen Osei-Owusu is a Nutrition & Diet Advisor for Nutrition Eagle. Any questions can be sent to email@example.com