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Maintaining a Healthy Weight Helps Prevent Heart Disease
In this article you will learn:
- why being overweight will increase your risk of heart disease
- how to determine whether you are overweight
- what to do for eating healthy to lose weight
- how to gain healthy weight
If you are overweight or obese, your risk of high blood pressure is greater than it would be if your weight was within healthy parameters. Blood pressure tends to increase as body weight increases. Even losing as little as 10 pounds in body weight can have a significant impact on blood pressure, and will have the greatest benefit for those who already have hypertension and are overweight.
Being obese or overweight has been shown to increase the risk factor of heart disease. Maintaining a healthy weight will greatly reduce your risk of developing diabetes and high blood cholesterol, and these are two major risk factors in developing heart disease.
In order to determine whether you are overweight, there are 2 easy measurements which might be helpful: BMI (body mass index) and waist circumference.
BMI is a table or matrix which measures lays down health weight parameters appropriate to your height. BMI calculators are readily available online. It can also calculate approximate body fat which is the key risk factor for heart disease. If your BMI is between, 25 and 29.9 you are likely to be overweight. If it is more than 30, you may be obese. Exercise caution when using the BMI because it does not take into account muscular body content. For example, a muscular person may have a relatively high weight, but may have low body fat – muscle is denser than fat.
In order to check the accuracy of BMI measurements, also check your waist measurement. A waist of more than 40 inches in men and more than 35 inches in women is considered to be too high.
If you have to lose weight, you need to be in calorie deficit and that means you need to ingest less calories than you burn. The amount of calories you burn every day is a function of factors such as your body size, your metabolism and how much exercise you take.
If you do have to lose weight, try to do it slowly and steadily. Aim to lose between half a pound to 2 pounds per week. One pound equates to approximately 3,500 calories. In order to lose 1 pound in a week, you need to ingest 500 calories a day less than you burn. If you try to lose weight too quickly, the effect can be that your body will enter into a starvation mode. This causes your metabolism to slow down, as your body adapts to being in severe calorie deficit. Your body will also be more likely to store calories as fat, as your dietary intake is not providing sufficient energy.
In order to boost your metabolism, try to eat 4-6 small meals per day, rather than 3 large meals. Also, make sure you are properly hydrated: aim to drink 1.5 – 2 liters of water every day.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
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