Weight Loss Good, Bad & Ugly
Guest Blog by Phill Wright – Creating Chaos
Medzooma has teamed up with GB Sports Coaches to promote the Free online Sport, Fitness & Leisure sector network’ as a part of the series of article we welcome Phill Wright the man behind Creating Chaos and his advice on weight loss techniques.
Weight loss is now an industry. It creates huge amounts of revenue, in fact, in 2010, the US weight loss industry was worth over $60 Billion. Quite astonishing hey!!
As it’s become such a humongous market, we thought we’d throw together a discussion looking at the good, the bad and the ugly sides of weight loss. After all, whether it’s something you want or not, it affects us all. It’s pretty difficult to spend 5 minutes on the web without some pop up attempting to sell you moon pills that reportedly help you drop 9 dress sizes in minus 4 minutes.
The aim of this is to get your thoughts so do leave comments. After all, we work in the fitness industry and we’re seeing things through our eyes which is only one side of the picture.
- If weight loss helps people balance meals, eat with sound regularity and limit portion sizes then it’s a good thing. With rising levels of obesity, diabetes and heart disease, starting to take control of eating will help people become more aware of the value of food and consequences of ignorance.
- To a point, there can be a direct link between looking and feeling good. Confidence is a huge player in being happy and feeling good about your body can help this. However, self-perception that is hinged on how you feel you look is a recipe for disaster. We’ve all seen the front cover of a trashy magazine with a stick-thin lunatic claiming to be fat, a common result of image-obsessed perception.
- Where does weight loss stop? If you need to lose weight then great, start balancing your eating and adopting some regular exercise. However, how will you know when enough is enough? Before you start doing anything towards shedding a few pounds, set your target and when you get there, the weight loss stops!!! At this point, you need to be ready to change your focus and goals as there is no more requirements to lose weight. Constant weight loss is not only impractical, it’s mentally draining and over time, it can lead to a self-created obsession. And when there is no weight loss or you no longer need to lose weight, where does that leave you? Feeling like you’re not achieving
- There seems to be a very common association that thin = healthy. This just isn’t true. Weight alone tells you nothing about body fat, cholesterol, lean muscle. Having a body composition assessment is a much more accurate way of measuring your internal health. Going on weight alone then many sports men and women are overweight / obese.
- Beware of fad diets and pills. Let’s accept one thing, people follow people. The world revolves on trends and that is a fact. Fashion, fitness, sport, films, the latest mobile phone…it’s all about what is in mode. When it comes to you and your body, it’s worth being strong and taking a step back from this approach. If we were only meant to eat meat and dairy then why would our body have enzymes that break down fruit and vegetables? Whilst the intricacies of nutrition are very complex, weight loss is simple –> if calories out exceed calories in then the body will lose weight.
- Eating disorders. Living in a visual culture where image is everything, why do we accept the false icons (ie. the models on the covers of glossy magazines) as the pinnacle of health? It’s widely known that most of them have eating disorders be it bulimia or anorexia. Teaching courses to fitness professionals, we come across the leaders of the fitness industry, the people that teach classes, personal trainers and in essence, the people intended to get the nation fit and healthy. Often, fitness professionals are in great shape themselves and now and again, we meet trainers who also feature as models in health and fitness magazines. Well, we want to share some of the trade secrets with you. Before getting their body into a state good enough to feature on the next issue of “Super Health” magazine, these fitness icons starve their bodies of energy, drink litres and litres of diuretics to empty the body of fluid and at the time of the photo shoot are often extremely weak and vulnerable. Yet this is what the nation and world looks upon as ideal.
- As already mentioned, weight loss, given the chance can become an obsession. Isn’t it ironic that we have songs about wanting to be famous and celebrity like. Whilst the fortune of celebrities is often incomprehensible, the image-obsessiveness, insecurity and incessant need for acknowledgement often leads them towards spending time in places like the priory or other goose farms. We’re not sure the songs would sell as well though if they were titled “When will I, will I be obsessive and paranoid?” – not quite as catchy
- As we’ve already discussed, weight loss is only a positive if it is required. If you don’t need to lose weight then starving yourself isn’t beneficial. It doesn’t take high profile cases to illustrate the harm of malnutrition which effectively is what weight loss is. You’re feeding your body with less than it requires to maintain. Inability to conceive children, loss of bowel function, poor circulation leading to amputations whilst being extreme, are all examples of taking weight loss too far.
- Possibly the ugliest of all from the whole weight loss empire. The effect on others! Remember that weight loss is not a way of living but a short term solution. A healthy lifestyle is a way of living. However, the weight loss culture takes over and this affects people around us and, the most impressionable of all…children. Isn’t it tragic to hear of children of 6 and 7 developing eating disorders. Should children really be looking in a mirror and holding their tummies in? One wonders the direction of a generation if this is what occurs at such precious ages? It really does start with us as adults ensuring that this doesn’t happen. This is a time to forget the adage “do as I say, not as I do”. Children are smart and leading by example is the single and only way to communicate the message of health.
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