Alright gentlemen, let’s face it: At some point in our lives, the vast majority of us will be looking at ourselves in the mirror and realize that we are not just out of shape, but in desperate need of some serious weight loss. If that is the case, significant changes to your lifestyle will be in order, most likely, your diet.

Obesity has become epidemic in the United States. According to the World Health Organization, obesity is defined as “a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater that is the result of abnormal or excessive weight and fat accumulation that presents a risk to a person’s health.” The health consequences of obesity are many including high blood pressure (hypertension), type 2 diabetes, coronary artery disease, stroke, gallbladder disease and osteoarthritis. Simply put, being obese is a ticking time bomb to your health and longevity.

The good news is you can achieve weight loss by making changes to your lifestyle, choosing healthy foods, dieting and re-establishing an exercise regimen. However, a critical step that needs to be taken before embarking on your dieting journey are outlined in the “Preparation Phase” of this article, which can greatly improve your chances of dieting success.

The Preparation Phase:

  1. Reflect on the reason you want to lose weight. Understanding why you want to lose weight can help motivate you in your weight loss program.
  2. Establish a goal weight you would like to achieve. Set your desired goal weight at the start is crucial in motivating and keeping you on track during the dieting process.
  3. Mentally prepare yourself for the rigors of dieting. Getting your mind ready for the coming changes, establishing a commitment to succeed and having a positive attitude can greatly help with your dieting success.
  4. Keep a 7-Day Diary: This will show you exactly what you have been eating. Document everything you are eating and drinking over the course of 7 days. It is important to include the time, the meal type (i.e. breakfast, dinner, snack), where you are at (home, work), and as much detail as you can provide (i.e. an 8 ounce glass of orange juice, a medium New York steak, etc.). Include your mood or frame of mind (i.e. tired, feeling stressed, irritated by work, etc.). The 7-day diet diary shows you the types of foods you have been eating, your eating habits and your behavioral relationship to food and liquids.

Overall, the preparation phase will help you understand where you are starting, help you become more focused, help with the discipline necessary in the dieting process, facilitate changing your eating habits, and provide you with a mindset of success during the process.

Visit us at Siskiyou Vital Medicine for an appointment and to learn the best options for your dietary and lifestyle goals and changes.

By Raymond Lombardi, NP-C.