Expert Opinion: More than two-thirds of U.S. adults are now overweight or obese, according to a new report published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Unfortunately, overweight and obese people are at a greater risk for other chronic ailments, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Not surprisingly, the researchers conducting the study concluded that interventions placing a priority on physical activity and wholesome diet are imperative in helping Americans reach a healthy weight.
Placing a priority on our health and fitness seems easier said than done when so many of our jobs these days require us to be sedentary and leave little time for healthy meal planning and working out. But it is possible with a little awareness and some technology.
“Simply making a conscious effort to get up from the manicure table to stretch and take walking breaks, preferably outside, will go a very long way toward burning calories, boosting metabolism, and energizing the body,” says Huntington Beach, Calif.-based personal trainer and fitness consultant Laura Klees. “Set yourself reminders on apps and gadgets like My Fitness Pal and FitBit, and do your best to hit 10,000 steps per day.”
According to David L. Katz, M.D., Yale University Prevention Research Center Director and author of Disease Proof and Flavor Full Diet, lowering calorie intake by 500 calories per day should result in a loss of a pound or so a week (most women will maintain their weight at between 1,800 and 2,000 calories per day). Katz advises simply focusing on a variety of wholesome foods for healthy weight loss. Keep in mind that most women should never drop their calories below 1,200 per day; otherwise, energy levels, mental focus, and mood will suffer, and you’ll risk being cranky with clients and co-workers. Slow and steady is the best strategy for lasting weight loss.
Tips for healthy weight loss:
> Increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, and lean protein. “If you consistently choose vegetables, fruits, beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, whole grains, lean meats/fish/seafood, and non-fat dairy, your macronutrient ratios tend to take care of themselves,” says Katz.
> Avoid refined carbohydrates such as white bread, soda, and alcohol.
> For healthy metabolism, drink eight to 12 eight-ounce glasses of water per day or more depending on your exercise level and climate, and aim for seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night.
> Use a pedometer and food diary to log exercise and food/calorie intake. Give yourself a jump start by signing up for NAILS’ 10k-a-Day Walking Challenge (see below).
Suggested Reading: Flavor Full Diet by David L. Katz, M.D.
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NAILS 10k-a-Day Walking Challenge
Get out of your chair and onto your feet, nail techs! Take NAILS’ 31-day walking challenge and start 2016 on the right foot. Devote the month of January to jump-starting a fitter you and share your results with NAILS readers in our April 2016 issue. Whatever your fitness goals — to lose weight, feel better, and/or improve your overall health — walking is a simple, inexpensive, and effective way to do it.
1. Starting on January 1, 2016, use a pedometer to keep track of your daily steps for one month. You can purchase an inexpensive pedometer or download a free smartphone app such as Pacer.
2. Your goal is 10,000 steps per day. You can break this up into segments — just aim for 10,000 steps total.
3. Email a summary of your month by February 15, 2016 to firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell us about your personal goals and what you achieved during the challenge. We love photos too!
Staring January 1, check NAILS social media feeds for weekly encouragement, tips, and fun fitness facts.
Let’s get moving! (That includes us here at NAILS.)
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