It’s not just a simple numbers formula as some health experts would have you think. It’s not a matter of whether or not you have a hot beach body either. Everybody seems to have an opinion, but when it comes to determining if you are too fat or not, the best judge could be you!
Take this little quiz. It’s quick; just one question.
Choose the answer that best describes how you feel.
1. How satisfied are you with your weight?
a) I’m very satisfied all of the time.
b) Mostly satisfied, except when I run into people I haven’t seen for a few years.
c) I’m satisfied, but my doctor warns me my health could be adversely affected by my weight.
d) I’m satisfied, but my weight makes it hard for me to breathe and get around and sometimes it causes me foot/knee/hip pain.
e) I hate how I feel and look.
a) It doesn’t matter what you weigh if you’re satisfied, you’re not too fat!
b) You’re not too fat, but if you feel uncomfortable seeing people you haven’t seen in years, take heart, they may be feeling the same thing!
c) When your doctor says your weight may be trouble, you need to listen. If heart disease, gallbladder disease or type 2 diabetes runs in your family your weight could be an additional risk factor that’s avoidable. Certain cancers are also exacerbated by weight. If, for example, there’s a history of breast cancer in your family you may want to heed your doctor’s warning.
Some doctors say, “you’re very healthy, except for your weight.” All your important health numbers (blood pressure, blood cholesterol levels, blood sugar, etc.) are well into the “healthy” range, then your habits may be more important than what you weigh.
If you are moderately or very active, eat a diet of lots of vegetables and fruits, whole grains, lean protein, fat-free or low-fat dairy, a little healthy fat (olive oil or avocados), mostly steer clear of fried foods, giant portions, sugary and/or alcoholic beverages and enjoy an occasional treat or snack foods processed with added fats, sugars, and sodium, your habits are healthy. Maintain your healthy habits and your regular doctor visits and as long as your weight stays consistent (no gains) your health numbers stay good, your weight is good too.
d) Your weight is limiting the pleasure you get from life. You might think that losing weight will be torture or that you won’t be successful so you don’t want to try. Neither of those things is true. Incorporating some new habits that support a healthy weight don’t have to be painful. You also don’t have to go hungry or give up favorite foods altogether to make weight loss progress. And as you lose weight, and your breathing gets easier and your pain goes away your life will open up to you in ways that you were missing before you lost weight. You only have good things to gain and negative things to lose by losing weight!
e)You’re uncomfortable and you don’t feel well and that could mean you are too fat.
It might not mean you are too fat, but it does mean you’re not happy with yourself. Your dissatisfaction could be a “mind thing” more than a “body thing.” You may just be contaminated by your own stinking thinking!
The best place to start to get happy with how you look and feel is with an exam by your doctor. Make sure you’re healthy. Talk to your doctor about your weight. Even if you don’t need to lose weight, you might be happier with yourself if you incorporate some healthier habits. Eating well and engaging in regular physical activity can do a world of good for mind, body and soul!