Category Archives: Weight Loss

The King Delivers

Links and such from the week…

Burger King restaurants in the Washington, DC area are now offering delivery service.  Two thoughts:  Where was this in college?  And, fast food isn’t all that great anyway, how can it be improved by increasing the time from heating to serving?  Oh, and if the delivery person is dressed like the King….

Here’s a guide on what to do when you burn your tongue on hot pizza.  Seriously, where was THIS in college?

I dig Trader Joe’s.  But some folks have developed an Apple like devotion to the grocer.  Here’s a quick explanation of its popularity.  And I thought it was the Hawaiian shirt clad employees and Two Buck Chuck.

A look at the caffeine content of 22 popular pick-me-ups.

Some hope: The CDC reports the overall obesity rate in the United States has hit a plateau since 2000.

Stay away from weight loss supplements.  Dr Oz says soI concur.

Fighting our Bodies. And our Environment.

The lead article in the last week’s (Jan. 1st) New York Times Magazine is an interesting discussion on weight gain and loss written by Tara Parker-Pope.  Ms Parker-Pope shares personal stories of weight loss struggles and illuminates current research on why weight loss is so difficult.

She shares new evidence that asserts once our bodies gain significant weight our hormones adapt to keep up us from losing.  And if we achieve in losing the added pounds, these hormonal changes will persist, compelling us to regain.

In essence, our bodies are against us when it comes to maintaining weight loss.  In this period of New Year’s resolutions, perhaps we should start with “gain no more”.

Dr David Katz has slightly different take.  While he understands “a body that has gained and lost weight requires fewer calories than a body of the same size that hasn’t at one point been heavier” he attributes these problems primarily to the obesogenic environment we’ve created.

And he makes a compelling case.  Matching our bodies’ desire to hold on to weight to the anti-viral response from vaccinations and aptly comparing our current abundant-calorie, sedentary lifestyle to a fish out of water.

As he states, “We seem inclined to plead with our bodies to be on our side, but would be far better served by conspiring to be on their side.”

Dr Katz’s commentary is the best argument I’ve heard for the environment as the primary culprit behind the obesity epidemic.  It is worth the 10 minute read.

Fit or Fat?

How much importance should we put on weight in determining overall health?  A new study says weight should take a back seat to overall fitness when assessing the health of an individual.  Essentially, an overweight fit person is healthier than an out of shape string bean.

At first blush the idea makes sense.  I certainly know folks who’d qualify as overweight (I hate BMI measurements) but could out run and out lift me.  As well as the skinny person who gasps going up a flight of stairs.

But is fitness really that much more important?  Are docs paying too much attention to the number on the scale instead of lung capacity, heart strength, and muscle tone?

I’d resoundingly say yes.  I think the BMI system is flawed.  And I think we spend too much time concentrating on the number on the scale.  I once compared it to the usefulness of the balance of checking account in assessing financial health.

Obviously, fitness over weight only makes sense to a point.  Certainly one can affect the other.  An obese individual will have a hard time becoming more fit without losing weight.  And a fit person will generally maintain a healthier weight.

But, understand this: Solely trying to lose weight is always a wrongheaded approach.  Trying to get healthy through building good eating and exercise habits is the key.  Concentrate on those and weight loss will come whether it’s important or not…

Dr. Oz’s Party

A few weeks ago I caught a segment on the Dr Oz show.  I’m not a regular watcher but I generally find Dr Oz’s advice and information to be fantastic.  On this particular segment however, he gave a piece of advice where I don’t agree with the good doctor.

He suggested throwing a “weight loss party” for yourself. Specifically, sending out invitations for the party celebrating your weight loss at some point in the future.

The party (and invitations) serve as motivation for you to lose the weight, since you’ve already told everyone you will.

Personally, I don’t like the “motivation by humiliation” idea.  But it works for some.  So be it.  However, what I really don’t like about “throwing a party” is it gives a hard date when weight loss will end.

Typically the day after the party, bad habits will return.  At least your resolve will wane.  Sustained weight loss becomes an afterthought.

Mind you, I’m not against setting goals.  However, I prefer weight loss to be a side effect of setting goals like “Being able to run 2 miles” or “Eating fresh
veggies twice daily”.

Saying “I want to lose 10 pounds by Memorial Day” doesn’t address what happens after the goal day.  I believe it’s one of the main reasons roughly 80% of dieters regain lost weight.  And, I bet so does Dr Oz.

Hey, I like parties.  Actually, I REALLY like parties.  So, go ahead, throw a party.  Just be sure to plan your next one before the congratulatory toast has faded.