The Health Benefits of Losing Weight
In the past, we’ve talked about losing weight and the healthy ways you can do it. Now let’s put those methods into action and show how losing weight can be very healthy for you. Achieving weight loss, big or small, can improve your health and lifestyle and you may even find that once the pounds are off, maintaining your healthy weight and lifestyle is even easier!
In today’s article, we’ll be focusing on the various health benefits of losing weight from methods such as following a healthy diet.
Improved Heart Health
There are several ways that weight loss is known to make you healthier. The most consistent of these regards heart health. We’ve discussed previously how losing weight can lower your risk of a heart attack, but it goes even deeper than that. Weight loss also helps lower your blood pressure, which protects you from a number of heart diseases like heart failure or aortic aneurysms, as well as heart attacks. Your cholesterol can also be reduced and managed by shedding some extra pounds, which further protects you against heart issues and other diseases.
Helps Control Blood Sugar
Your blood sugar can benefit from weight loss by increasing your insulin sensitivity. Managing your blood sugar by losing weight lowers your risk of diabetes. If you have diabetes, being overweight presents a new set of risks, so it’s smart to keep a healthy diet and exercise to protect yourself against further damage from diabetes.
Lowers Risk of Cancer
Lowered chances of diabetes and improved heart health aren’t the only positives of losing weight. According to the American Cancer Society, obesity and being overweight can raise your overall risk of cancer. One of the reasons for the increased risk is due to inflammation, which can be cause by weight gain. This inflammation can impair the immune system, as well as make other changes to our bodies that increase the risk of cancer. Research also showed evidence that weight loss further lowered rates of certain cancers, beyond just removing the increased chances due to obesity.
Protects Your Joints
Another benefit to weight loss is the reduction of pressure on joints, primarily the knees and ankles. If you have knee pain, this will be music to your ears! Joint pain can be debilitating and is all too common. Luckily, losing weight is one of the most effective ways to reduce joint pain. One report estimates that for each pound lost, you’re reducing the pressure on your joints by four pounds! This same report estimates that, if you’re overweight, losing five to 10 percent of your body weight can even reduce your risk of developing arthritis!
If you’re in need of a good night’s sleep and are overweight, losing a bit of weight may be enough to help you. Studies have found that weight loss can improve the quality of your sleep. Another study found that sleep quality was “significantly associated with overall weight loss.” One reason for this improvement deals with snoring. Snoring can significantly lower the quality of your sleep, and the sleep of anyone sharing the room with you. Being overweight is a common cause of snoring, so losing weight can resolve this issue. Weight loss can also cure sleep apnea, which can ruin sleep quality. One study even found that 88 percent of sleep apnea patients who lost weight were cured of their sleep apnea.
Easier to Keep Off
Many who lose weight find that it’s easier to keep off once it’s gone. In many ways, it’s sort of a momentum thing. Studies show that people who are successful in losing weight long-term continue to consume healthier diets after the weight is lost. Other studies conveyed that participants reported improved levels of energy, mobility, and health, among other aspects. To sum up, once you lose weight, you’ll find it’s easier to maintain the healthy behaviors you set in motion. You’ll also keep up with your fitness since you’re more mobile, healthy, and energetic. This sustained behavior results in long-term weight loss management.
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Now that you know why it’s so healthy to lose weight, it’s time to get started! Creating a weight loss plan, paired with a healthy diet, is a great way to begin your weight loss journey. Medicareful Living has numerous resources in our Health and Diet sections on healthy ways to lose weight through diet and exercise. There are even fitness programs that are often covered by Medicare!
Ultimately, finding the right weight loss solution is specific to you and your health, so don’t forget to work with your doctor to find ways that work for you. Good luck on your healthy weight loss journey!
The National Weight Control Registry — The National Weight Control Registry Research Findings