Saturday, December 16, 2017

Weight Loss: A Little Goes a Long Way

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by Michelle Sutton-Kerchner

When it comes to weight loss, many have hefty goals. However, a small loss can have big gains for your health and, eventually, your waistline …

Drop Five Percent

Although it may not eliminate the threat of obesity for the seriously overweight, losing five percent of excess body weight has benefits. A 250-pound individual who loses about 12 pounds accomplishes a lot behind-the-scenes, even if not visible in the mirror.

Biggest Gains

As summer ends, weight loss goals slip a little on the priority list. Schedules become more hectic. Life’s responsibilities can become overwhelming. And, we don’t have swimsuit season to taunt us.

Here are some top health perks to kickstart your weight loss journey. Use these motivators to spark a little weight loss. It may be all you have time for right now. It also may be all you need.

Gain confidence and a bunch of health perks, even if you don’t get skinny-jeans results.

Inspires. Losing several pounds is a motivating catalyst for change. As with most tasks, the act of starting often takes the most effort. Along with losing those last 10 pounds, losing the first few can be the biggest challenge. It requires change and the energy needed to make it happen. Once it does, the impact on stamina, mentality, and health scores propels us forward. Physical and mental positivity is set in motion. You realize, yeah, you’ve got this.

Improves Heart Health. HDL (good) cholesterol helps clear LDL (bad) cholesterol from your blood. Exercise and reducing excess body fat are the best ways to increase your HDL level to above 60 mg/dl, which helps decrease your risk of heart disease. Losing between five and 10 percent of unhealthy body weight also can decrease triglycerides and blood pressure.

Takes the Pressure Off. Being as little as 10 pounds overweight causes unnecessary wear and tear on your joints, especially from the waist down. Excess body fat also can cause chronic inflammation, which damages tissues and joints over time. Shedding unhealthy pounds literally makes your body lighter to carry itself around, reducing your risk of arthritis and everyday aches and pains. And effort!

Reduces Risk of Type 2 Diabetes. Excess fat, especially around your middle, affects the ability to properly regulate blood sugar. Exercise, and its promotion of a healthy weight, helps prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes.

Dropping only five percent of excess body weight helps prediabetic individuals significantly reduce their risk of developing the condition. For those already diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, this minimal weight loss can: reduce the amount of medication required; help better control blood sugar; and reduce the risk of developing secondary health issues from the condition, like kidney and heart disease.

It’s Realistic

Losing five percent of any excess body weight is doable. It usually does not require a major lifestyle upheaval or medical assistance. For most, it can be done while juggling life’s other activities and challenges. Small dietary adjustments, increased exercise, and additional healthy habits can whittle away that five. Make a little effort, shed a little weight, and reap big rewards.


“What a 5% Weight Loss Can Do for Your Health,” at

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