Have you ever gone on a diet, lost a lot of weight, only to gain it all back again and have to begin your diet again? This is called yo-yo dieting and is very dangerous to health.
According to a Wake Forest University study, postmenopausal women who lose and regain weight increase their risk of developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Even though cholesterol, triglycerides, blood sugar and blood pressure levels are all positively impacted with weight loss, they tend to go right back to dangerous levels once weight is regained.
Researchers note that keeping the weight off is as important as the initial weight loss. Even a slight weight gain after loss can significantly increase cardiovascular and diabetes risk factors.
In the study, researchers followed 100 postmenopausal women during a weight-loss program lasting five months. Participants were monitored for a year after the program. The average weight-loss during the program was 25 pounds. After the year observation period, 66% of the women gained, on average, 70 percent of the weight they had lost.
Those who regained as little as 5 pounds had increased their risk developing cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Researchers found that chronic disease factors returned back to baseline values and sometimes worse with the weight gain. Participants who maintained their weight loss did not have a return of risk factors
Keep it Off
While losing weight is instrumental to improving health, this study shows how critical it is to keep it off. Without effective weight management strategies, those that lose weight may do more harm than good.
The emotional toll of yo-yo dieting is also of great concern. People get excited when they lose weight but become depressed when the weight returns. This can prohibit long term success in all areas of health.
Lifestyle Changes – Not Diet
Yo-yo dieting is often the result of a hurried, misinformed approach to weight management. Taking it slow and easy brings the best results. Making gradual lifestyle changes rather than pushing the body into a state of nutritional deficiency, through strict and calorie-restrictive diets, will yield long term results and make it easier to keep the weight off and disease at bay.
In addition, shifting our attitudes about what “healthy” weight looks like is also in order. Skinny does not necessarily mean healthy, and once we understand this, it will be easier to stay within a reasonable weight range.
Weight Loss Tips
Here are a few weight loss tips to help you lose weight and keep it off.
- Drink more water – at least 10, 8oz glasses per day
- Exercise regularly
- Get at least seven hours of sleep each night
- Learn how to handle stress
- Adopt a positive outlook
- Stop eating processed foods
- Eat organic when possible
- Do not eat foods with more than five ingredients
- Cut out refined sugar
- Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
- Eat raw nuts
- Eat grass-fed meat
- Eat free range – organic chicken products
-The Alternative Daily