A New Year comes with people all around the world making resolutions to lose weight and hence it seems fitting that January is named Healthy Weight Awareness Month. The purpose of this month-long campaign is to alert people about the various risks associated with obesity and to provide them with the tools they need to improve their health.
Obesity is the leading cause of preventable deaths, second only to deaths caused by tobacco. Obesity comes with associations with diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, and respiratory problems.
One way to measure if your current weight is healthy is to measure your Body Mass Index (BMI). Although your BMI does not actually measure your percentage of body fat, it is a useful means to estimate a healthy body weight based on your height. The formulas to calculate BMI based on two of the most commonly used unit systems are:
BMI = 703·weight (lb)/height2 (in2) (U.S. Units)
BMI = weight (kg)/height2 (m2) (Metric Units)
This World Health Organization (WHO) recommended body weight based on BMI values for adults is represented in the table below. It is used for men and women, ages 18 or older.
|BMI range – kg/m2|
|Severe Thinness||< 16|
|Moderate Thinness||16 – 17|
|Mild Thinness||17 – 18.5|
|Normal||18.5 – 25|
|Overweight||25 – 30|
|Obese Class I||30 – 35|
|Obese Class II||35 – 40|
|Obese Class III||
To ensure that your hard work pays off and that you achieve the best results, this Healthy Weight Awareness Month consider reducing excess calories from refined carbohydrates and fat such as sweetened beverages, as well as maintaining an adequate amount of protein in your diet. Other important features of a healthy eating plan include incorporating appropriate amounts of fruits, vegetables and dietary fiber.
Many people fall into the trap of focusing exclusively on exercise without paying any regard to what they consume. Although exercise is a highly important factor in the management of a healthy weight and body composition, physical activity will not be as effective, without a properly balanced diet.
Happy New Year with a happy Healthy Weight Awareness Month. May your weight be in your favour!