As a dietitian and health counselor, I have no problem with declaring obesity a disease, especially considering the complexity of potential causes, some of which are indeed beyond an individual's control. Having said that, I also believe that the only appropriate response to illness is to make every effort to overcome it as quickly possible.
Applications (apps) on smartphones are accessible, convenient, inexpensive, and have the potential to be far reaching BUT can they be effective for weight loss? The public and software developers certainly think so, as there are an estimated 400 iTunes apps and 480 Android apps available in the "health and fitness" category with 30 specifically designed for weight loss including self-monitoring (1).
Lululemon founder, Chip Wilson, recently said that the problem with his company's yoga pants is really a problem with some women's bodies. It appears they believe that plus-sized women don't engage in yoga, and what's more, they shouldn't deserve to. Why? Because their bodies don't work with Lululemon's vision of what someone engaging in yoga should look like.
There is no easy and straightforward way to surrender our collective obsession with fat. But here are some of the strategies that point the way. Regulation, used properly, has a role in such efforts. First, the prejudice against fat people needs to end. We need to accept individuals of many shape and sizes; judging them by their qualifications and not their weight.
That we have a widespread anti-fat bias and discrimination out there is no secret. But when this comes from the very people who should be there to provide help and support to those struggling with excess weight, I guess we really have a problem. I asked readers to share the stupidest remarks they have ever heard from a health professional about their weight -- the response was overwhelming.
My problem isn't with Maria as a person. I don't believe that she was intentionally trying to hurt anyone, and there's a very good chance that she had no idea how this image would add major fuel to the already blazing fire of contempt in a society that glorifies the skinniest bodies and demonizes pretty much everything else.
It makes a lot of sense to first deal with what took you to the top before beginning your journey down that up-escalator. Clearly, simply jumping on that escalator without first dealing with the underlying problem will make losing weight and keeping it off so much more difficult -- remember, running down the escalator with no baggage is already hard enough.
One of the games I used to play as a kid was to run down the up escalator. To get to the bottom, I had to run down faster than the escalator was moving upwards. If I ran any slower, the escalator would take me back to the top. I use this analogy with my patients to help them understand the incredible challenge of losing weight and keeping it off.
Rushing though meals, eating junk food or snacking late at night are unfortunately too typical habits of our modern day existence. An unhealthy diet has serious repercussions, and can result in depleted energy, stress, and illness. But being busy doesn't necessarily mean having to forgo healthy eating habits; it just requires some knowledge and organization.
We shared recipes and simple ideas for students (and their parents) to make healthy, yummy, affordable food. Because fast food won't change -- it's made by scientists in white lab coats to be as cheap and addictive as possible -- the only way to stick it to fast food is to replace fast food with quick and delicious real food.
What is your gut instinct telling you about probiotics? Do you need more information? You're not alone. Over the past decade, dietitians and gastroenterologists have been discovering exciting new findings about probiotics, the gut and health. Here are my top five facts that will help you understand probiotics.
Kids have started getting excited about the bounty of candy they'll be getting and their parents are getting anxious. There is so much focus being put on the issue of obesity recently that we have become terrified of every calorie and fat gram we consume and are unfortunately, passing this fear on to our kids.
Some readers may be well aware of the five stages of grief, the natural process of grieving, which, according to Kubler-Ross, move from denial to anger to fear to grief and finally to acceptance. Now that we have come to appreciate that obesity is a chronic disease, it should come as no surprise that these five stages also apply to obesity.
Let me explain: When I tell patients to stop smoking, they know exactly what to do, namely to stop putting a cigarette in their mouth and inhaling its smoke. That's a behaviour they can change. When they stop smoking they have "successfully" changed a behaviour -- that's behaviour change, end of story.
Since food cravings in response to stress will inevitable occur, whether you fight them or not, it seems more helpful to keep food items around that are healthy and non-fattening, like fruits and vegetables, and to stay away from the chips and candy you may prefer at the moment but will cause you regrets later on.