Sylvester Dietitians Weigh In: “Weight! Whats the Deal?”

Did you know: Approximately 70% of Americans are considered overweight or obese? The medical cost of obesity in the U.S. is estimated at over $150 billion dollars annually (!!!) in direct and indirect costs. Individuals with obesity pay an estimated 42% more on medical costs than non-obese individuals.  

This week, Dietitian Patricia Araujo, RD, CSOWM, LDN of Sylvester Cancer Center, discussed the risks associated with obesity and dove into the relationship between cancer and obesity.

Obesity carries a negative implication in both health and quality of life. Heart disease, diabetes, abnormal lipid profile, fatty liver and cancer are some of the health conditions that have been associated with overweight and obesity. Two ways to measure our weight is BMI (body mass index) and the waist circumference, although these methods have some limitations.

  From a weight standpoint, what can we do to stay healthy?

– If you have a healthy body weight, avoid weight gain.

– Pay attention to your food, quality and quantity counts.

– Stay active.

– Get enough sleep

– Foster healthy habits.

– If you have excess weight, consider losing weight. Talk to your health care professional to determine how much weight you should loose. Most people with excess body weight see health benefits losing 5-15% of their body weight.

– Different diets can work for weight loss, choose something that will promote health, and that will help you cut some calories. Avoid the “quick fixes”, instead choose something that will fit your life-style and something enjoyable that you will be able to maintain on the long run.

– Diet changes often include: Increasing vegetable intake and reducing refined starches and sugar. Also, eating enough protein and healthy fats.

– Exercise: Recommendation is a minimum of 150 min per week, but to lose weight you might need more. Make sure not to overcompensate your exercise with food!

– Behavioral strategies can help with weight loss. Consider: self-monitoring, goal setting, problem solving, stimulus control, mindfulness and stress reduction.

– Also, you don’t have to do it by yourself. Support, professional and from home, can help set you up for success.  

Don’t forget to sign up for the next four seminars in the nutrition series held at Jackson Hall! Thursday, July 12th, we’llexamine popular diet trends, and proceeding that Thursday, July 26th will explore whether or not sugar is good for you or not. Don’t miss out!

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