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By Dr. Steven Sisskind

For many women, losing weight is a backburner goal they hope to achieve “someday,” when things slow down and they can focus on their health a little more. But let’s be honest: When is that ever going to happen if you don’t make it happen?

If your goals are minor or purely cosmetic in nature, you should feel free to accomplish them at your leisure. If, however, you are overweight and at risk for other health issues, you should start losing weight before real problems develop.

The Physical Dangers of Being Overweight

If you are overweight, you are leaving yourself open to physical conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, early dementia that can lead to Alzheimer’s, knee and hip problems, hormonal conditions, arthritis, and even early death. If you’re finding that your blood sugar is getting high, your blood pressure is elevated, your mood and energy are down, and you’re starting to feel pain, it’s definitely time to take care of yourself.

This list of dangers is not meant to scare you; rather, they are real concerns that should motivate you to take charge of your health. At RealDose, we tell you that losing weight can be hard work, but knowing that you’re reducing all these risks can bring peace that is priceless.

When talking about health, our own needs often become secondary to the needs of other family members, especially if there are kids in the picture. But don’t underestimate the significance of taking care of yourself for your loved ones. Kids needs good examples, and you mean a lot to the people you love. They want you to be around for a long time!

The Psychological Side of Weight Loss

Being in your ideal weight range not only brings physical benefits, but psychological ones as well. There have now been multiple studies demonstrating the link between depression and being overweight. This is most likely due to the fact that excess fat causes inflammation, which has a dramatic effect on mood. It’s almost impossible to be overweight and have a healthy brain.

Inflammation is the most significant way that being overweight can affect your psychological health, but there are other factors as well. Carrying extra weight around requires a lot of effort, and that can drain your energy, causing moodiness. Perhaps the most purely psychological effect that weight loss brings is simply a positive response to looking better, whether it comes from other people or from looking in the mirror and knowing that you’ve accomplished your goals.

Where to Start

If you’re convinced that you need to start dropping pounds, you’re probably thinking about how to get the ball rolling. The two best things you can do to get started are changing your habits slowly and practicing mindfulness.

Changing Habits:
You want changes to stick, so don’t overwhelm yourself with too much at once. Start with just changing breakfast for a week. Avoid eating a lot of carbs, which can cause a hormonal cascade that will potentially ruin your weight loss for the day. Instead, have a high-protein shake, eggs, or lean meats, and a complex carbohydrate/fat blend of either flax or chia seed or quinoa. This will get your metabolism going, make you less hungry throughout the day, and let you experiment with delicious new foods!

Mindfulness:
Mindfulness might be a surprising practice to help you lose weight, but research shows that it works. Mindfulness comes out of meditation, which may sound intimidating, but all it really means is slowing down and being more aware of your surroundings.

A great exercise to try is to spend 10 minutes being mindful of something as simple as a raisin (yes, a raisin!). Spend five minutes studying the raisin, touching it, thinking about where it came from, and examining its color and texture. Then take a full 5 minutes to slowly eat the raisin, taking it in with all your senses, feeling it go down to your stomach. Finally, sit quietly for another minute and take in your surroundings.

If you do this for seven days, you will find yourself eating less, eating better foods, and enjoying your meals more than you ever have. Plus, you’ll lose weight!

Don’t wait for a crisis situation to make weight loss a priority. If you are overweight and developing other health issues because of it, now is the time to get started. Whatever the cause for being overweight, whether it was a pregnancy, surgery, or long-term problem, you can take charge of your life and make healthy decisions from here on out. You owe it to yourself to do so.

Dr. Steven Sisskind the Chief Medical Officer at Real Dose Nutrition, a company that promises to deliver the right ingredients at the real dose. Connect with Dr. Sisskind on Google +.

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