Can Obesity Shorten Your Life?

A new study out of McGill University of Canada concluded that obesity not only shortens one’s lifespan, but it also shortens the quality of one’s lifespan as well.

Western society has been suffering from an epidemic of obesity. More than one-third of all americans, or 78.6 million people, are overweight or obese. Continue reading Can Obesity Shorten Your Life?

The Obesity Paradox

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Our overall health is related to how we take care of ourselves, rather than related to how big or small our waistlines are.

Pain Free Lifestyle exercise and nutrition programs are designed around the principal that it is more important to take care of yourself, be healthy and feel well, than it is to lose weight and be thin. The program is designed around the belief that it is more important to be healthy, than it is to look healthy. The program is comprised of exercises that are designed to make you feel better, rather than to get skinny. Pain Free Lifestyle is not a get thin quick scheme. Continue reading The Obesity Paradox

Skinny Fat

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For many years I have felt that weight is not a determining factor of overall health.

People can be fat and fit, just like they can be thin and unhealthy. Your overall health and well being will be influenced more by whether you exercise, eat right and take care of yourself, rather than if you are thin or heavy. Continue reading Skinny Fat

You Can Be Fat And Fit (Despite What The Study In The New York Times Said)

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The New York Times recently ran an article saying that a new study came out concluding that healthy obesity does not exist.

For years I have read studies on this subject. For years I have treated patients who would fit into this “fictional category” of healthy obesity.

In nature there are variances. Some of us are tall and some are short, some are thick while some are thin. Some of us will be fat and some will be skinny. We can control some aspects of our weight, but we can’t change our body type. If you are big boned and of a large frame, you are always going to have a large frame. Continue reading You Can Be Fat And Fit (Despite What The Study In The New York Times Said)

Anything is Possible Through Proper Nutrition and Exercise

fat shadow manNo matter how obese you are, no matter how inactive you are, you can get yourself into better shape. You can get more energy. You can lose weight. You can reduce your pain.

I copied onto this post about a woman named Theresa who at her most weighed almost 500 pounds and wasn’t able to walk any distance. After cutting back on her diet and slowly increasing her activity levels, she has been able to lose over 200 pounds in 2 years.

When you are obese and inactive, it can be very hard to see a way out. If you can’t walk down a hallway, how can you exercise enough to lose weight?

The trick is to start easy and to start at your own level. If you can’t walk more than 2 minutes at once, then start with that. Start out walking 2 minutes 5 days a week. When that 2 minute walk eventually becomes easy, then increase it by 1 or 2 minutes. Then when that time frame becomes easy, then increase it again.

You have to slowly increase your activity. I look at it as you have to get yourself in shape to begin to exercise. Pain Free Lifestyle takes you step by step and easily leads you into better shape.

Here is the article about Theresa. Never lose hope, you can always feel better, reduce pain, and increase activity levels through proper nutrition and exercise. It is the Pain Free way.



The Global Epidemic that is Obesity


Last week the British medical journal The Lancet released a report stating that obesity is a bigger health crisis around the world than hunger is. It is also the leading cause of disabilities worldwide.

This report, called the Global Burden of Disease, was the product of the contributions from almost 500 researchers from 50 countries. These researchers compared and studied data and health trends from 1990 to 2010. They concluded that there is a massive shift in global health trends. This trend shows a shift from commincable diseases affecting more people worldwide to noncommunicable diseases affecting more people worldwide.

According to Ali Mokdad, co-author of the study and professor of global health at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, immunizations are preventing children from dying from infectious diseases. “However, the world is now obese and we’re seeing the impact of that,” he said.

The report also revealed that there has been an 82% increase in obesity globally in the past 2 decades, with the exception of sub-Saharan Africa. As Middle Eastern countries adopted the western lifestyle within the last 20 years, their obesity rates have risen 100%.

“The so-called Western lifestyle is being adapted all around the world, and the impacts are all the same,” Mokdad said.

The report also mentioned how people are living longer on average, but the quality of that extra life is not good. According to the report, on average, people are ill and in pain for the last 14 years of their lives.

“We’ve figured out how to keep the person who suffered a stroke alive, but they’re living disabled for years afterwards,” said Mokdad. “All these problems are tied to obesity. We’re even seeing a large percentage of people suffering back pain now. If we could lower the obesity rates, we’d see the numbers of noncommunicable diseases and pain decrease as well.”

According to Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, noncommunicable diseases are a global challenge of “epidemic proportions”. Dr. Chan said in a speech to the U.N. General Assembly that noncommunicable diseases are a “slow motion disaster” that could eventually cost many countries astronomical amounts of money in health care costs.

Noncommunicable diseases are type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and other preventable diseases of modern society. The key is that these diseases are preventable. They can be prevented by watching what you eat and primarily by exercising. These problems are made worse the more sedentary someone is. If they work sitting at a desk all day and then go home and sit in front of the computer, then these preventable and noncommunicable diseases will get worse and worse.

According to a 2011 report by the World Economic Forum and Harvard School of Public Health, noncommunicable diseases will cost more than 30 trillion dollars in the next 20 years. Health care related costs are already the leading cause of bankruptcy in our society. As the epidemic of obesity progresses, millions more could be pushed into poverty by upcoming health care costs, economists say.

The focus has to be on preventing these issues in the first place, rather than treating them once they have flaired up. It is much easier to prevent a fire then it is to put it out. This pertains very well to the body. You just have to do some maintenance on your body. Y

Have to change the oil in your car, you have to brush your teeth. You are using your muscles every second of every day of your life, even if you are sitting down. Therefore you have to do some maintenance on your muscles and body.

The average person gains 1 to 2 pounds per year. Over the course of 20 years that could accumulate to 20 to 40 extra pounds. Take into account also that it is much easier to put on weight than it is to lose it. Since it took so long to put on the weight, you can’t expect to take it off in one month, or even one year. Putting the weight on was a long term process, so taking it off will be a long term process as well. And any diet or exercise system that says it is not a long term process is lying.

You have to look at things long term. You aren’t going to burn off all that excess weight in a month. You have to start out slowly. You will slowly chip at that excess weight every time you go for a walk or exercise. Every time you skip dessert or eat some fruit or vegetable you are slowly chipping away at those extra pounds. If you work at it consistently then you will see a difference. It is not a matter of if, it is a matter of when, if you are exercising consistently and watching what you eat.

Even if you exercise consistently, you may not lose much weight. This is because muscle weighs more than fat does. As you put on muscle by exercising, you will re-shape your body and may even put on a few pounds. But the weight that you put on will not be fat, and since you will be putting on muscle, your body will be re-shaping itself. You will look better, and feel better since you will be more stabile due to your new muscles. You will also be healthier. Studies have shown that if you are exercising consistently and still overweight, you will be healthy and will not be subject to the health issues associated with being obese. These health issues associated with being obese are all of the noncommunicable diseases that are discussed in that report. If you exercise and are still obese, you will not have the biological markers that are present in someone who is obese and not exercising.

It can be hard to get into exercise and start eating right. The older you get, the harder it gets to break old habits and create new habits. I am always willing to make a change that will give me even the slightest possibility of living longer and living more comfortably. Especially when reports like this one come out talking mentioning that people are living longer but many of those last years are painful.

I have read studies that show that people aged 86 to 92 can benefit from exercising. If they feel better from exercise at their age, then at our age we can feel better from even mild exercise. And the longer we exercise, the longer we feel better.

The Pain Free Lifestyle program will break down step by step how to get into exercise by slow, easy to stick with steps. I incorporate the same philosophy to my nutrition program. Slow, easy to stick with steps.

Studies show that in order to benefit from exercise and eating right, you have to do it consistently. The best way to incorporate exercise and eating right into your lifestyle is through small and consistent steps.

Don’t be a global statistic, start feeling better through exercise and proper nutrition. Lose weight, feel better and relieve pain the Pain Free way.

Exercising and Still Heavy? Being Healthy is more Important


Our society is fixated on being young and skinny. There are variations in nature, and some of us just aren’t meant to be thin, just as some of us aren’t meant to be fat. Some of us are going to be tall, short, fat, thin, have dark hair or light hair, and so on. To a certain degree we can alter these characteristics that we are born with, but to a large degree we cannot alter them.

People have different body types. If you are big boned and have been heavier for your entire life, then chances are that you are not going to be able to have 6 pack abs or 4% body fat. Maybe you can get yourself to that point, but it would take a lot of hard work and a lot of depriving your body through drastic changes. The changes to your body would last as long as you could maintain the drastic changes that it took to lose the weight in the first place.

I feel that it just isn’t worth it to suffer and to negatively affect your health so you can look like a certain societal ideal. If it is your job to look good then that may be a different story. But for most of us, being thin and looking good is not our job. The main focus of exercise and eating right should be to feel good and be healthy, not to just look good. Don’t get me wrong, there is certainly an esthetic component to exercising, and everyone wants to look and feel good. I just feel that you should make being healthy your main concern, and then the weight changes will follow.

This is true for those of you who are larger and big boned, and the same is true for those of you who are naturally thin. I feel that if you don’t exercise it will catch up with you in one way or another. There are those people who are naturally thin. There are those who have to work at it to keep weight on or to gain weight. But just because someone is thin, doesn’t mean that they are healthy. And if they haven’t exercised or taken care of themselves because they have been thin, it will catch up with them in one way or another sooner or later.

I commonly see people who have recently started a new exercise routine, have been sticking with it for 6 months to a year, and have their weight loss has leveled off or they haven’t lost much weight. Weight should not be the focus, as long as they are exercising then they will feel better and the better they feel the more activity they will be able to do. The more activity they are able to do, the more weight they will lose long term.

Weight loss is something that has to be looked at long term. If you are overweight or obese, chances are that you did not put on the weight all at once. Chances are that you slowly put it on over time. So with that in mind, the weight that took 20 years to put on is not going to be taken off within a month or 2, or even a year. It takes time to lose weight.

The article that I attached talks about those who are metabolically healthy. The metabolically healthy, overweight people have healthy levels of triglycerides, HDLs and LDLs, blood pressure and fasting blood glucose levels. It is also referred to as “uncomplicated obesity” or “metabolically benign obesity”. This means that those who are overweight but are taking care of themselves and exercising and eating right do not show the signs and symptoms that those who are not taking care of themselves show.

Dr. Francisco Ortega, lead study author of Aerobics Center Longitudinal Study, told CNN that “Our study, together with previous literature, strongly suggest that a better cardiorespiratory fitness will make you healthier regardless of your weight status.”

It is hard when you have been heavy all of your life and you have been exercising consistently for the past year and you still are heavy. Don’t get discouraged though, because you are healthier and probably feeling better since you started exercising. And at the very least you will not put any more weight on if you are exercising. Sometimes it is hard to get your body past its’ set point for weight. But keep working at it. The alternative is that if you don’t exercise you will gain more weight, become less mobile, be able to do less of the activities that you enjoy doing, and die younger then you would otherwise. If you don’t exercise the quality of your life will be worse, and you won’t live as long either. For me, there is no choice.


The Cost of Obesity

                The rate of obese people in the U.S. is increasing at a scary rate. As our waist lines increase, so will the cost of caring for health issues associated with being obese. Experts from the Weight of the Nation Conference in Washington said that the number of obese Americans is expected to increase from 36% presently to 42% of the adult population by 2030. These experts estimate that the cost of treating these additional obese people for health issues related to their obesity (heart disease, diabetes, etc.) will add up to nearly $550 billion over the next 2 decades. Continue reading The Cost of Obesity