Bridgeport, W.Va. — During the month of November, United Hospital Center will be focusing on the obesity epidemic that faces the residents of north central W.Va. UHC is committed to helping patients live healthier and more productive lives. UHC recognizes the role of proper nutrition and physical activity to improve the public's health by preventing and controlling chronic diseases.
Click on the link below to view a brief interview with Ginny Vincent, OccupationalTherapist at United Rehab concerning physical activity and obesity:
It is natural for anyone trying to lose weight to want to lose it very quickly. Evidence shows that people who lose weight gradually and steadily (about one to two pounds per week) are more successful at keeping weight off. The key to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is not about short-term dietary changes. It is about a lifestyle that includes healthy eating, regular physical activity, and balancing the number of calories you consume with the number of calories your body uses.
Physical activity can increase the number of calories your body uses for energy or "burns off." The burning of calories through physical activity, combined with reducing the number of calories you eat, creates a "calorie deficit" that can help with weight loss.
"If you are maintaining your current body weight, you are in caloric balance. If you need to gain weight or to lose weight, you'll need to tip the balance scale in one direction or another to achieve your goal", said Becky Foster, Dietician at UHC. "If you need to tip the balance scale in the direction of losing weight, keep in mind that it takes approximately 3,500 calories below your calorie needs to lose a pound of body fat."
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Heart disease and stroke are two of the leading causes of death in the United States. It is important to get at least 150 minutes a week (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity. If you follow these guidelines, you can lower your risk for developing these diseases. You can reduce your risk even further with more physical activity. Regular physical activity can also lower your blood pressure and improve your cholesterol levels.
"Regular physical activity helps improve your overall health and fitness, and reduces your risk for many chronic diseases," said Ginny Vincent, Occupational Therapist at United Rehab. "Not doing any physical activity can be bad for you, no matter your age or health condition. Keep in mind, some physical activity is better than none at all. Your health benefits will also increase with the more physical activity that you do."
This is the first of a four-part series of articles by UHC to create awareness concerning the effects of obesity and ways to combat it. Additional information and resources are available online at www.cdc.gov/obesity/.