Weight-gain, Obesity & Loss of Energy…
(Written on: 11th January, 2010)
Weight gain, obesity and loss of energy are major problems for people nowadays and we should just stop for a second and just think about that statement. It’s a problem for people ‘Nowadays’ ?
Why only ‘now’? Why not ‘back then’?
Let’s be realistic…I mean, almost all the food dishes that exists today also existed back in the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s and even before that. So why has weight gain and obesity become such a major problem today?!?
See…it’s not that the pizza, pot roast, meat lasagne, cheese-cake and chocolate didn’t exist back then, because these things and ‘the like’ did exist and yes then were eaten, but you ‘d be surprised to know that weight gain has a lot more to do with your ‘lifestyle’ and habits that they do with what you actually eat. Yes of course, WHAT you eat has something to do with it, but this is greatly insignificant when compared to question of HOW you are eating it…
Ever heard these sayings:-
*”Technology breeds laziness”
*”Women aren’t as strong these days as they use to be back in the day”
*”My great grandmother in her day would go inside, deliver the baby, and head straight back out to the cane field to work”
So what has changed?!? Why is it so hard for us to lose that excess bulge and that stubborn fat?
Why are we all so tired and stressed?
It’s not diet people…it’s lifestyle…
*Here are a few recent studies that seem to support this idea:-
1) Dangers of wasting time behind television – “When adults watch TV, they are virtually motionless…And research has found that your heart rate, blood pressure and metabolic rate all slow down while you’re watching TV — even more than if you were sitting in a chair doing nothing.(Tom Farley, M.D., chair of the department of community health sciences at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.)
2) Stress is a killer – “Cortisol (a hormone that your body produces more of when you are stressed) also drives your appetite, especially for things that are sweet, fatty and comforting,” (Shawn M. Talbott, Ph.D., associate clinical professor of nutrition at the University of Utah and author of “The Cortisol Connection.”)
3) Sleep Deprivation – “Sleep deprivation leads to an increase in insulin resistance (a condition in which your body doesn’t use blood sugar properly, thereby increasing your risk of diabetes) and a decrease in levels of leptin (a hormone that appears to play a key role in satiety). (Eve Van Cauter, Ph.D., one of the authors of the study conducted. Research done at the University of Chicago)
4) The effects of Lighting – “Bright lighting makes some people feel more aroused, which could lead them to eat faster and consume more total calories…(On the other hand) dieters tend to consume more in dimmer light, because they lose self-consciousness.”(Nanette Stroebele, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.)
5) Music is a distraction – “People tend to eat more when listening to music than when eating in silence…You’ll be distracted and sit at the table longer. (Nanette Stroebele, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the Centre for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.)
*As for the Muslims, there is compounding evidence from statements of the Prophet(sal allahu alaihi wa salam) and his pious predecessors (May Allah be pleased with them) and clear statements by the major scholars of Islam (those who are strongly qualified and put the Qur’an & Sunnah above their desires) that music is not something the Muslims should involve themselves with. It is unlawful…but I will not address this here as I intend to post these rulings in another article soon Inshaa Allah.
*My Personal Observations:-
1) Sitting down, un-distracted and peacefully when having dinner actually helps you to pace yourself through the meal. You focus on the food and not on other auditory distractions. This, logically, will aid digestion and gives your body enough time to process the food properly. Which is why you would find people who commonly eat while driving, in stressful situations, and distracted situations on the whole… they tend to just swallow down their food without thinking about it and are also always the ones who end up overweight, stressed and become the victims of so many disorders that are either directly or indirectly related to their digestive system.
2) People get back on your treadmill – do your evening walks, jog around the house, run up a hill at La Vega or Botanic Gardens maybe. Do whatever you have to do to keep yourself fit. Get your body moving and get your blood pumping…No couch potatoes!!!
*Apart from these studies there a several little pointers that I could touch on with the ‘WHAT’ to eat part, as I’ve already focused on the ‘HOW’ to eat part of this topic:-
1) Almonds – “Dieters who ate 3 ounces of these nuts every day reduced their weight and body-mass index by a solid 18 percent compared with an 11 percent drop in the no-nut group” (a study in the International Journal of Obesity found). Almonds are high in alpha-linolenic acid, which can speed the metabolism of fats. (I remember researching that the recommended amount is 12 per serving)
2) Cinnamon – Sprinkling a little cinnamon on your food may prevent the insulin spike your body emits after a meal. This spike “signals the body that it should store fat rather than burn it,” (Lauren Slayton, R.D., of New York City.) A couple places I love to sprinkle cinnamon is on your butter toast, coffee, yogurt, bread pudding, pancakes, peanut punch, hot cocoa, hot chocolate, etc…
3) Berries – This little fruit is busting with vitamin C! Apparently berries such as strawberries and raspberries can help you burn up to thirty percent more fat during exercise (Research from Arizona State University at Mesa)
Let’s keep fit!!!