Maintaining a Healthy Weight: Understanding the Importance for Your Wellness

Achieving an ideal body weight is a priority. Learn why this is important and find out more about the benefits of a healthy body weight.

Mature couple jogging and running outdoors in city holding water bottles

The United States’ problem with obesity is well known, with 2 in 5 people considered to be obese. It’s no secret many Americans struggle to control and maintain a healthy weight. Healthy body weight is essential for reducing the risk of developing chronic diseases like heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. It can also help to reduce the risk of certain cancers.

However, maintaining an ideal body weight for each person depends on several factors: age, gender, height, body shape, and muscle-fat ratio. One of the most common formulas used to measure body weight is the Body Mass Index (BMI). It can indicate body fatness for most people that may lead to health problems. There are 4 BMI categories – ideal weight (BMI between 18.5 and 24.9), overweight (BMI between 25 and 29.9), obesity (BMI above 30), and extreme obesity (BMI above 40).

On the contrary, being underweight can have many negative health implications. These include nutritional deficiencies, weakened immune systems, fragile bones, and fatigue. It can also cause fertility problems in women. Similarly, being obese can put you at increased risk of diseases or mental health illnesses.

Here are several things that play a role in getting a healthy weight. 

Healthy Body Weight: Factors To Consider

Organic Green apple and Weight scale measure tap with nutrition vegan vegetable and sport equipment gym
Balance in your activities and diet can help you maintain a healthy weight.

The ability to achieve and maintain a healthy weight depends on the harmony between your mind and body. The Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) view of health relates closely to your lifestyle, emotions, a smooth flow of qi, and a balanced yin and yang

For instance, if a person undergoes emotional stress, it can weaken the spleen’s functions and stagnation qi liver. This is evident from digestive imbalances and a result of the Liver not regulating qi flow properly. Hence, this will lead to blood stasis, fluid retention, and slow metabolism, contributing to weight gain. 

You may not have control over natural factors that influence your body weight. However, you can make specific changes to gain control over factors related to your lifestyle habits. 

Diet

What you eat and how often you eat directly influence your ability to achieve a healthy weight. Suppose you consume a diet that revolves mainly around foods that are high in calories and unsaturated fats. In that case, you are at a greater risk of being overweight or obese than people who consume nutritious foods. Increased consumption of these foods can also increase your risk of certain types of cancer.

“There is strong evidence that eating red and processed meat causes bowel cancer. Reduce your consumption of red meat and fill at least half your dinner plate with a variety of different, colorful vegetables. Vegetarian diets can be healthy and balanced too. However, suppose you don’t eat meat or other animal foods. In that case, it is important to ensure you are getting enough protein, vitamin B12, iron, zinc, calcium, and omega-three fatty acids,” says Kong Teck Chuan, a TCM physician for Eu Yan Sang. 

In the same way, a higher daily intake of processed meat products, barbecued or grilled meat is associated with an increased risk of colorectal cancer in women. 

One of the best ways to keep your body weight in check and strengthen your immune system is to consume a beverage containing apple vinegar and honey mixed with water. 

Metabolic Rate

BMR basal metabolic rate formula in a notepad
Maintaining a healthy metabolic rate will decrease your risk of weight gain.

Your level of physical activity contributes directly to your metabolic rate and ability to achieve a healthy weight. A sedentary lifestyle can accelerate muscle loss and reduce metabolism, increasing your risk of weight gain.

Certain Medical Conditions

Obesity increases your risk of health comorbidities, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, certain types of cancer, and breathing problems like sleep apnea and asthma.

If your parents face obesity issues, you are likely to deal with them as well. Recent studies suggest that genetics contribute to 40%-70% of obesity. Obesity can also be caused by insulin activity or the use of certain medications. Making healthier eating choices or switching to a plant-based diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes may help you achieve the ideal body weight and reduce your risk of obesity-related diseases.

“Through diet changes and weight loss, you may be able to reach and hold normal blood sugar levels. However, do note that type 2 diabetes is an ongoing disease, and its symptoms may return if you don’t control glucose intake,” physician Kong notes. 

The Benefits of Maintaining a Healthy Weight 

It is not easy to maintain a healthy weight for your height and age. In the long run, however, accomplishing the weight goals you’ve set for yourself will set you up for a lifetime of wellness.

1. Efficient Blood Circulation

an illustration of torso with 3 acupoints and an illustration of legs with one acupoint
By stimulating these three acupoints, you can suppress your cravings and increase blood circulation.

Maintaining a healthy weight helps to promote good blood circulation. Healthy circulation is necessary for efficient oxygen transport throughout the body. In turn, this allows your lungs, heart, and muscles to function properly. 

Healthy circulation can also increase your resistance to infections and diseases and rid your body of waste from different organs. A vegetarian-friendly supplement that contains pine bark extract may help to promote healthy venous blood flow. 

According to physician Kong, acupuncture and cupping therapy can help suppress appetite and increase the flow of blood and qi. These treatments can also help to manage stress and improve sleep in general. Common acupoints include Tian Shu (ST 25), Shui Fen (CV 9), and Feng Long (ST 40).

2. Relieves physical discomfort

Being heavyset can cause you to be less active physically and increase your risk of experiencing aches in your joints, bones, and muscles. Therefore, it is important for you to maintain a healthy weight, as it reduces the strain on these areas of the body. It can also help to improve your overall mobility. 

3. Improves immune system function

The immune system consists of different cells that protect the body from bacteria, viruses, and foreign pathogens. These cells need to be in equilibrium to ensure you stay healthy. Different lifestyle factors, including your diet and excess body fat, can tip this balance and trigger these cells to harm your body. 

A full-body detox may also help you to maintain a healthy weight by allowing your body to better absorb nutrients. One way to do so is to add more fiber to your diet by taking supplements, such as the Puri5 Fibre Supplement For Detox. It works by eliminating toxins from your diet and flushing your system. Anyone can benefit from a fiber-rich diet. Fiber cleanses the intestinal tracts, promotes bowel movement, helps lower cholesterol, and stimulates the production of enzymes in the body

Consuming herbs like Cassia seeds, hawthorn berries, and tangerine peel can help with weight loss. Cassia seeds are effective for detoxifying the liver, dispelling Wind Evil, clearing liver heat, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, and relieving constipation. Hawthorn berries can promote an increase in coronary artery blood flow, improve circulation, and lower blood pressure. Tangerine peel helps to ensure a smooth flow of qi in the spleen and stomach by removing phlegm and dampness.

Staying at your ideal body weight has many health benefits. Hopefully, this guide will take you one step closer to achieving your healthy weight goals.

References

  1. Harvard T.H Chan. Healthy Weight. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  2. NHS. 2020. Underweight adults. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Adult BMI Calculator. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2021. BMI Percentile Calculator for Child and Teen. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  5. BMI-Calculator.net. Ideal Body Weight – J. D. Robinson Formula[Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  6. BMI-Calculator.net. Ideal Body Weight – B.J. Devine Formula. [Accessed 2 October 2021] 
  7. BMI-Calculator.net. Ideal Body Weight – GJ Hamwi Formula. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  8. NCBI. 2004. Weight Management: State of the Science and Opportunities for Military Program. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  9. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2021. Adult Obesity Causes & Consequences. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  10. Northern Illinois Vein Clinic. 2019. Why Good Blood Circulation is Vital to Your Health. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  11. International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. 2017. Comparison of World Health Organization and Asia-Pacific body mass index classifications in COPD patients. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  12. US National Library of Medicine. 2009. Processed meat and colorectal cancer: a review of epidemiologic and experimental evidence. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  13. US National Library of Medicine. 2017. A plant-based diet for the prevention and treatment of type 2 diabetes. [Accessed 22 October 2021] 
  14. US National Library of Medicine. 2017. A plant-based diet for overweight and obesity prevention and treatment. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  15. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2020. A Prospective Analysis of Red and Processed Meat Consumption and Risk of Colorectal Cancer in Women. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  16. US National Library of Medicine. 2017. What is the impact of underweight on self-reported health trajectories and mortality rates: a cohort study. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  17. US National Library of Medicine. 2011. Mental health impairment in underweight women: do body dissatisfaction and eating-disordered behavior play a role?. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  18. US National Library of Medicine. 2017. Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Obesity: Implications for Public Health. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  19. US National Library of Medicine. 2013. Obesity and Pain. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  20. US National Library of Medicine. 2014. Organic acids, sugars, vitamin C content and some pomological characteristics of eleven hawthorn species (Crataegus spp.) from Turkey. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  21. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Overweight & Obesity Statistics. [Accessed 22 October 2021]
  22. BMJ. 2021. Obesity in US children increased at an unprecedented rate during the pandemic. [Accessed 22 October 2021]

Related Articles

A man having a gluten-free diet breakfast while refusing to eat the bread
Weight & Fitness

How a Gluten-Free Diet Can Benefit Your Health

Celiac disease is a genetic condition where the immune system negatively reacts to gluten. Learn more about how to incorporate a gluten-free diet here.

Read More

The contents of the All Things Health website are for informational and educational purposes only.
Our website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.