The Obesity Crisis
In the United States, 39% of adults are considered obese, a figure that has more than quadruple in the last decade.
If current trends continue, more than 80% of American adults will be obese by 2025.
And according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, about 16.9% of American adults have an underweight body mass index (BMI), which is a measure of how well a person’s health is in comparison to their weight. Being underweight is associated with many health risks including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers.
If you’re among the millions of Americans struggling with weight loss, you’re in the right place. Here are some tips on how to shed those excess pounds.
Try A Rapprochement Approach
One of the most effective ways to lose weight is through a calorie-reduction approach called the Rapprochement Diet. Developed by Dr. Robert O. Young, this diet teaches people to eat healthier by reducing the amount of food they consume while increasing the amount of energy they get from nutrient-rich foods. Rather than focusing on what you should avoid, the Rapprochement Diet focuses on what you should eat more of (i.e., fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain breads) to reduce unwanted weight gain.
To follow the Rapprochement Diet, first identify the foods you should be avoiding (i.e., fried foods, refined sugar-based foods, and trans fats). Then, create a food list that is 80% positive and 20% negative. For instance, you may decide that fried foods and sugar-based foods contribute to body weight gain, while vegetables and whole-grain foods reduce it. To stay motivated, you should prepare a list of pros and cons for each food you try to avoid. For example, saying no to sugar may be very motivating because you’ll be doing something beneficial for your body and mind.
One of the major causes of weight gain is stress. A 2016 study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that chronic stress causes the body to produce more cortisol, a hormone that encourages weight gain. Although there is no specific diet to reduce cortisol levels, you can minimize the impact by reducing stress in your life. This means getting more sleep, exercising, and maintaining a healthy relationship with your partner or spouse.
Consume More Water
A healthy weight is usually associated with an individual who drinks at least eight glasses of water each day. The reason is that water helps keep your body hydrated, which in turn helps maintain a healthy metabolism. If you’re not drinking enough fluids, you may also be dehydrated, which can also cause you to gain weight. Drink sufficient water daily, and you may find that your weight fluctuates less than it does when you’re dehydrated. Your body needs sufficient hydration to function normally, so it’s important to drink at least eight glasses each day regardless of whether you’re thirsty or not.
Introduce More Protein Into Your Diet
Eating plenty of protein is essential for losing weight because it helps you maintain a healthy lean body mass. A protein-rich diet also encourages the body to produce more endogenous (“natural”) hormones that help regulate metabolism, which in turn minimizes the risk of weight gain. The best dietary sources of protein include beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds. Some fish, tofu, and eggs are also high in protein. You should vary your protein intake by mixing different types of meats, fish, and chicken with lentils, beans, or nuts to create a more interesting dish. If you are looking for a vegan alternative, try making a meatless crumble using seitan as a replacement for the ground beef.
If weight gain is a concern for you or someone in your home, try the Rapprochement Diet. While it may take time to find what works best for your personal preferences, this healthy eating approach can help get you on the right track to a slimmer, happier you.