Obesity: Shhhh we don’t talk bout that!

Often a taboo subject to talk about without offending people. It shouldn’t be. No matter what way we chalk it up, being obese isn’t good for us. Forget how you look, I don’t care and it’s not a concern of mine (or for anyone else but yourself for that matter), but I do care about your health. After all, that’s why my passion for helping people is in the health and fitness sector.

It’s great to finally see the government taking a keen interest on helping fix the UK’s obesity crisis, even if it has taken a pandemic to get their attention!

So what are the government proposing (so far)? Let’s have a look:

  • Banning adverts for high fat, high sugar, high salt foods (HFHSHS) before 9pm
  • Banning deals on HFHSHS foods at counters
  • Calories displayed on menus (on large 250+ employee businesses)
  • Calories displayed on menus for alcohol
  • Prescribed cycling
  • Cycle vouchers to have a bike repaired.

Most of which are legitimate strategies of providing information. The problem I see is this; the information means nothing if the information means nothing to the consumer. XXX product has XXX calories. So what? 99% of people have no idea how many calories to consume a day (it’s not the recommendations you see on the back of food packets, believe me) and are scared of sugar & fat and this should not be the case.

In my experience, getting people to change isn’t as simple as providing information. If it were that simple there wouldn’t be an obesity crisis as we all have access to google and google has all of the answers. A lack of Information is not the problem. It’s so much more than this and people will only change when they are ready. Typically; this happens before/after a positive or negative experience.

Not mentioned above is a new campaign from the government to help people ‘lose weight, get active and eat better. I haven’t mentioned this because I have no idea what this entails yet, so I’ll update you as and when I find out.

None of the above strategies will fix an obesity crisis in my opinion unfortunately. What I’d love to see are some serious educational programmes, teaching people about foods and calories. Not good Vs Bad but Real world education that helps people understand food so that you can make informed decisions.

I’d love to see programmes for people that offer real accountability and support in both exercise and nutrition. The NHS partnering up with the many amazing training facilities in the UK that specialise in helping people change their lives. These partnerships will work far quicker than banning adverts or any of the above measures suggested so far. Will it cost more money that banning adverts? Sure it will. Will it cost as much as the £6.1 BILLION that obesity causes the NHS per year. Not even close.

Time will tell with what the government have in store to help tackle the UK’s obesity crisis, for now I’ll hold full judgement but it’s not looking good.

For now, and until then, this is what YOU can do from today to help you make changes.

First up, find someone to hold you accountable. A friend, family member, colleague, personal trainer. Whoever, but find someone. Creating change is hard and having someone by your side every step of the way will help you immensely. You’re going to have tough days/weeks and that’s perfectly normal. Your accountability buddy will help you to stay focussed and on track.

Start moving more, yes it is that simple. If you drive everywhere, start walking or cycling. The more calories you expend the better (for weight loss).

Allow yourself to ‘make mistakes’ and have bad days, it’s cool. Change and weight loss isn’t a linear process.

Realise that every 1 stone, 2 stone or 10 stone weight loss begins with 1 lb. Your job isn’t to lose 3 stone, it’s to lose 1lb and create habits and routines that continue that cycle (this is the hard bit).

Get a good night’s sleep. Being tired affects decision making. Poor decisions with your food and exercise will have an adverse affect.

Juice diets are bullshit.

You can’t out train a bad diet, well 99.9% of people couldn’t so don’t try. Want to give it a go? Try burning off 50 calories as fast as you can. That’s one apple….

Read. Educate yourself on nutrition. We have lots of great blogs here > https://impact-pt.co.uk/blog/ on nutrition.

You have to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight (expend more calories than you consume over a 7-day period).

To summarise in no particular order –

  • Accountability
  • Move more
  • Prioritise a good night sleep
  • Be kind to yourself
  • Small steps lead to big goals
  • Juice diets are bullshit
  • You won’t out train bad diets
  • Education is king.
  • Calorie deficit

Get on top of these fundamentals and you’ll be winning! Good luck and as always if you do require help, simply get in touch.