With the sumptuous food and treats available during the holiday season, it’s easy for us overdo it – even while we are adopting a New Year’s resolution to lose weight and be active.
"Making a resolution to lose weight today is an important first step to a long and healthy life," said Department of Health Services Secretary Karen Timberlake. "You can get a strong start by knowing where you are at today; then set realistic goals to eat healthy and include physical activity into your life."
Being overweight or obese increases the risk of many diseases and health conditions, including Type II diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, sleep apnoea, some cancers, and joint problems. In Wisconsin, 2 of 3 adults are either overweight or obese.
Most people know their overall health depends on being physically active and maintaining a healthy weight. The problem is that most good intentions often get derailed even before they can be put into practice. Suggestions to get started include:
- Writing down what you eat and drink for a few days, including the time and how much you are eating
- Tracking your activity level for a week
- Knowing your numbers — specifically your body mass index (BMI)
"Whether your goal is to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, be physically active on a regular basis, or make healthy food choices, you should recognise that taking small steps can have a lasting impact. Small changes made over time will be more likely to become part of your daily routine," Timberlake added.
The formula for calculating your body mass index is:
BMI = weight (kilograms) / (height (metres) * height (metres))
A man who weighs 85 kilograms and is 1.8 metres tall would have a BMI of
BMI = 85 / (1.8 * 1.8)
BMI = 85 / 3.24
BMI = 26.2
This information will be collected for educational purposes, however it will remain anonymous.
(Source: Wisconsin Department of Health Services: January 2009)