We’ve all heard about the obesity issue happening in America… people are getting less active, eating more, and getting more and more unhealthy. Okay, so maybe you eat pizza more often than you should, and maybe it wouldn’t hurt to cut back on the soda… but you aren’t by any means OBESE. In fact, maybe you’re still in pretty good shape. Or maybe you’re just a little bit overweight, but not too bad. Or maybe you are pretty big, but so what? It doesn’t matter what you look like anyway, right? Who cares…
Actually, it has nothing to do with what you look like. It’s not that you need to be a size 2, or super toned, or look like all the girls and guys in magazines and on movies. Not at all. But you DO need to take care of your body and your health.
Childhood obesity had more than doubled in the past 30 years. That’s pretty bad… but with adolescents, it’s quadrupled.
Being obese means you’re 10% higher than what is recommended for your height, age, and body type. It also usually begins in your teenage years. If you become obese while you’re a teenager, it’s very likely that you’ll have a hard time losing the weight and changing your habits, and you’ll live most or all of your life overweight.
What causes obesity?
- Poor eating habits
- Overeating or binging
- Lack of exercise
- Family history of obesity
- Stressful life events or changes
- Family and peer problems
- Low self-esteem
Like I mentioned earlier, I’m not talking about looks here. I’m not saying you need to be super skinny or super fit. I’m saying you need to be careful, because if you become too overweight, you can have all kinds of health problems… some of them could even kill you. Some health concerns are:
- Increased risk of heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Breathing problems
- Trouble sleeping
- Emotional problems
- Bone and joint problems
- Increased risk of strokes
- Increased risks of several types of cancer
Believe me, I know it’s hard to lose weight and stay healthy. Unfortunately our society has turned into one that doesn’t make health a priority… We’re so busy and on the move, so we pick up fast food because it’s quick and convenient. We’re obsessed with fancy coffee drinks, so we splurge way too often on sugary, 400 calorie mochas and lattes. We like to watch Netflix and play video games instead of going outside. We go to the grocery store and we’re overwhelmed with products that have way too much sugar, fat, and all kinds of other added nasty things that aren’t good for our bodies. Sometimes they even advertise it to make us think it’s healthy, but it’s really not.
So… what are we supposed to do?
There’s lots of things you can do:
- Get more active. Start going to the gym, going running, or doing workouts in your room. If working out isn’t really your thing, start walking. Or instead of sitting on your behind playing games, get up and clean the house, or do something else productive. Turn up the music and dance by yourself in your room. Just get moving.
- Change your eating habits. Is it the end of the world if you eat pizza or get a cheeseburger? Of course not. But you shouldn’t do it very often, and when you do, you should balance it by eating plenty of fruits and vegetables too. So instead of eating 5 pieces of pizza, eat 2 pieces of pizza with an apple. Read food labels. Be aware of what’s going into your body. Feed your body good, healthy things. Try to eat less fatty and sugary foods, and eat less calories. Also limit snacking.
- Go see a doctor. See where you’re at and how you can get healthier.
- Join a support group. Look one up in your area… maybe your school counselor can even help you find one. That way you can meet other people who are in the same boat as you, and/or have the same goals you do.
Although, I will say this… if you are going to try to lose weight, do so in a healthy way. Trust me, if you don’t eat ENOUGH calories everyday, it will not do you any good.
So many Americans are getting so unhealthy, guys. Lets put it a stop to it. Quit feeding your body garbage and fuel it with the nutrients it needs… take care of yourself and your health.