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Weight Loss Essay Examples - Sample Essays
Pennington Nutrition Series
Healthier lives through education in nutrition and preventive medicine
Body Mass Index (BMI) is a way to define overweight and obesity. The index is a mathematical formula in
which a person’s body weight in kilograms is divided by
the square of his or her height in meters [kg/m2]. The BMI
is more highly correlated with body fat than any other
mathematical ratio of height and weight; however, athletes
and individuals with a high percentage of muscle may
have a BMI in the overweight range because of the higher
density of muscle compared to fat.
A BMI of 18 to 25 is considered normal weight.
Individuals with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are
considered overweight, and those with a BMI of
30 or more are considered obese.
Overweight is defined as increased weight in
relation to height.
Obesity is defined as an excessively high
amount of body fat or adipose tissue in
relation to lean body mass.
The distribution of body fat is important from a
chronic disease perspective. Those who have more
body fat in the abdominal area have an increased risk
for elevated triglycerides, high blood pressure and
glucose intolerance. Waist circumference correlates
well with chronic disease risk. A waist circumference
of 40 inches (102 cm) or more in men or a waist
circumference of 35 inches (88cm) or more in women
puts one at greater risk of insulin resistance and the
chronic diseases associated with it.
When someone is a few pounds overweight and
is motivated to lose weight, there are safe and effective methods to lose a few pounds and to maintain a
innovate educate improve lives
on physical activity
American College of Sports Medicine
recommends 30 to 45 minutes of exercise three
to five days each week, maintaining the intensity
for the duration of exercise. Each session should
include a 5- to 10-minute warm-up and a cooldown period. If weight loss is a major goal,
aerobic activity should last at least 30 minutes a
day for five days each week.
The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate activity
for adults on five or more days a week. Children
and adolescents should have at least 60 minutes
a day of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity
for at least five days a week. Moderate physical
activity, such as walking, done on several bouts
lasting 10 or 20 minutes at a time will result in
the same level of energy expenditure as one
longer session. Choose an activity that is
enjoyable so you will stick to the activity.
Maintaining, gaining and losing weight are
tied to energy balance. Positive energy balance
leads to weight gain, negative energy balance
leads to weight loss, and maintaining weight
means an energy balance has been reached.
Physical activity and caloric intake balance each
other out at weight maintenance.
Exercise is excellent in helping to maintain a
zero energy balance. Exercise can build lean body
mass, which burns more calories than fat. Walking,
running and doing physical activity can burn two to
three times or more calories than a similar amount of
time sitting. Moderate activity is needed to metabolize stored body fat and to modify physiologic
functions that affect hormonal and immune function.
Weight loss similar to diet can be achieved by
exercise alone. An exercise program with a minimum
of 150 to 200 minutes of moderate physical activity
each week combined with a diet for weight loss can
result in reduced body weight and fat. An exercise
program with less than 150 minutes a week and
lower intensity can result in improvement in cardiorespiratory fitness. There is an improvement in
overall physical fitness and a reduction in blood
pressure. Exercise improves maintenance of weight
after weight loss and is essential for weight maintenance.
High amount of abdominal fat is a risk factor for
high blood lipids, diabetes and heart disease. Men
and women who are aerobically fit and have smaller
waists and reduced abdominal fat have a lower risk
of chronic diseases, compared to those with a larger
waists. Exercise, particularly aerobic excercise, can
reduce abdominal fat significantly.
Aerobic exercise is any extended activity that
makes the lungs and heart work harder while using
the large muscle groups in the arms and legs at a
regular, even pace. Aerobic activities help the heart
grow stronger and more efficient. They also use more
calories than other activities. Some examples of
aerobic activities include:
Ice or roller skating
Using aerobic equipment
(treadmill, stationary bike)
Anaerobic activity is short bursts of very strenuous activity using large muscle groups. Anaerobic
activity helps build and tone muscles, but it does not
benefit the heart or the lungs. Examples of anaerobic
activities are weight lifting, curls and power lifting.
During the anaerobic activity, glycogen (carbohydrate
stored in muscle and liver) is used for energy and, at
the end of anaerobic activity, lactic acid is produced.
This gives a burning sensation in the muscles.
Beginning Walking Plan: Follow 3 to 4 days a week to build a safe walking
Warm up Walking Briskly Cool down
Week 1 5 minutes 5 minutes 5 minutes
Week 2 5 minutes 7 minutes 5 minutes
Week 3 5 minutes 9 minutes 5 minutes
Week 4 5 minutes 11 minutes 5 minutes
Week 5 5 minutes 13 minutes 5 minutes
Week 6 5 minutes 15 minutes 5 minutes
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Weight Loss For Women - UK Essays
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