The United States of Fitness
The Ever-Enlarging American Waistline
The problem of obesity in America needs no introduction. Despite all the efforts made over the years to provide a healthier and more active American population, the fact is that Americans have still managed to increase the natural waistline for both men and women. It has even trickled down into the youth of the country leading to movements like Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign to fight childhood obesity.
Take a look at these obesity statistics—the numbers speak for themselves:
% All Females Overweight or Obese: 65.8 %
% All Males Overweight or Obese: 71.3 %
% All US Adults Overweight or Obese: 68.5 %
It is no surprise that losing weight and getting healthier can be difficult to do on your own. However, two UCLA doctors, Thomas N. Bradbury, PhD and Benjamin R. Karney, PhD, believe they have the solution, outlined in their new, well-received book, “Love Me Slender.” While the UCLA study looks at significant others, the advice can easily be applied to best friends, family members, and more.
The Book & The Strategy
“Love Me Slender”(see excerpt here) is the compilation of findings and results from Bradbury and Karney’s study about how the best tool you have to help yourself lose weight and get healthier is your significant other. It shows that people who work out together or simply just support the other in their goal for a healthier, more fit version of themselves can make a world of difference in beating obesity or simply preventing it to begin with.
- Educate your partner – The person bringing unhealthy foods around doesn’t realize how hard it makes it for the other person. By telling your partner what makes it difficult for you to succeed in your goal for a slimmer/healthier self, you will see improved results.
- Find support in your relationship – All of our decisions and health habits are embedded in our social relationships; once we realize this, we can begin taking advantage of the strengths that are in our relationships to get ourselves healthier.
- Avoid giving excessive reassurance – This is a pitfall in relationships because when one person says something negative about themselves the natural response from the other person is to say the opposite, leaving the person with the negative feeling, frustrated because its invalidated. To help, provide two kinds of support: reassurance they’re great and encouragement to change for the better.
All the Diets in the Book, and All You Need is a Partner
Whoever you choose to tackle the task of losing weight with, one way to you both improve your chances of success is by cooking and eating healthier, as Monsters & Critics shares via interview with a registered dietician. Being conscious of what you’re both putting in your mouth day to day can make a world of difference. Here are some alternatives to the delicious foods we all succumb to at one point or another!
- Instead of pizza dough, make cauliflower pizza crust.
- Instead of iceberg lettuce, go for spinach.
- Instead of white or even wheat pasta, go for spaghetti squash noodles.
- Instead of granola, try oatmeal with fresh fruit.
- Instead of an egg sandwich, make scrambled eggs with fresh cut veggies.
- Instead of potato chips, eat kale chips.
- Instead of cheese and crackers, have apple slices with peanut butter.
- Instead of white bread, swap it for whole wheat.
- Instead of hummus and chips, go for hummus with sliced red and green peppers.
- Instead of a snack bar, try a handful of almonds.
Sources – in order of appearance:
- http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/AdultObesity/#Whatcanbedone. Vital Signs: Adult Obesity.
- http://frac.org/initiatives/hunger-and-obesity/obesity-in-the-us/. Overweight and Obesity in the U.S.
- http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15803015-love-me-slender. Love Me Slender on Good Reads.
- http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-me-slender-phd-thomas-n-bradbury-phd/1115893427?ean=9781451674538. Love Me Slender on Barnes and Noble.
- http://www.monstersandcritics.com/fat-or-fit-feast-or-famine-diet-expert-shows-how-to-overcome-the-holiday-food-dilemma/. Fat Or Fit? Feast Or Famine? Diet Expert Shows How To Overcome The Holiday Food Dilemma.