Is Obesity a dirty word and how can you prevent the accumulation of body fat?

The word obesity makes people uncomfortable. When we have conversations about obesity, the way we frame the conversation has a huge impact on the effect that it has on others.

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Even though obesity is an important concern for modern humans, I don’t believe that it is proper to label an individual as, “obese.”

I can’t imagine myself — where I am today — ever telling a person, “you are obese.” That seems so rude and insensitive. The word obesity carries a significant stigma because medical researchers have produced alarming studies that suggest there are many dangers of carrying excessive adipose tissue. If you take an objective look at the research, it is undeniable that there are real risks associated with existing in a much larger body for a long period of time.

Nobody wants to be objectified.

This is why I understand the powerful emotional response of people who have been told by doctors or other professionals that they are obese. It’s hurtful and de-humanizing to be judged for your body alone and this can be true in many contexts including romantic and professional.

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Many people who have struggled with weight issues feel that they are being unfairly attacked in all areas of society simply for existing. For anybody who has ever struggled with weight, we know that it’s not so simple as just waking up tomorrow and eating better. There are very powerful beliefs that we carry with us that either help us move forward, help us maintain, or cause us to regress. We need motivation, inspiration, and support.

It’s your beliefs and values that help you achieve the body that you have today.

Even though we are inseparable from the messages that society sends us, I know that the most successful people in life are those who take responsibility for their own beliefs without blaming others for their failures. I look at my personal failures and I own them. It doesn’t feel good to think about my mistakes, but it feels good when I stop making the same mistakes that have held me back in the past.

Fat shaming is highly inappropriate and rightfully offensive. However, only you can choose to take responsibility for your own choices. Attempting to change other people will only frustrate you and cause you to lose focus on what really matters. Think about changing the ways that you let other people affect you and perhaps you will become empowered. Nobody can affect you unless you let them.

Life is about balance — but some of us are already way too far out of balance.

It’s a fair analogy to say that being overweight is like being in debt. Carrying excess adipose tissue is literally a metabolic debt and the worst part about being in debt is having to pay interest on your debt.

People don’t realize that body fat is metabolically active and quite dangerous in the long term. Excess body fat releases inflammatory compounds which stimulate the immune system, cause stress on the body, and make it even harder to lose weight. Just like accumulating interest on a credit card balance, the longer you carry excess body fat, the more challenging it will be to pay off the metabolic debt. That’s why it will, “cost more,” metabolically speaking for an overweight person to consume high sugar because it adds to the debt, which adds to the accumulating interest payments which comes in the form of high inflammatory compounds.

People who’ve existed in larger bodies for a longer period of time may benefit from looking at the situation just like a person who has been in financial debt for a long period of time.

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How to get out of debt?

Stop spending on things you don’t need: sugars, high saturated fats, alcohol etc.

Start increasing your wealth/income: consume the most nutrient dense foods like green vegetables and probiotic foods.

Focus on yourself: people who are broke are often that way because of their beliefs about money/spending. People who are overweight are often that way because of their beliefs about activity/eating. It won’t get better unless you get better.

The term obesity is meant to be used in the context of the population, not so much as an application for the individual.

Obesity is “diagnosed” using the body mass index, which I am not a big fan of. Body mass index is simply an index of height and weight, leaving no other data to give us indication about the health of an individual.

 

Because we come in all different shapes and sizes, a person who is “obese,” on the body mass index could be very much a healthy person. That’s why obesity should be spoken of in the context of population-scale issues instead of applying the term to an individual. I personally don’t like labels in many capacities because I find labels to be self-limiting.

How we talk about our bodies and the bodies of others is definitely an area of opportunity for most people, especially parents. Self talk is always an opportunity for all of us.

There is no ideal body, only your ideal body.

I think your ideal body is one which helps you feel empowered, confident, capable and allows you to do whatever you want to do in life. Much of your ideal body has to do with your beliefs about your body and your beliefs about food.

You know you have achieved your ideal body when people’s comments no longer affect you. You know you’ve reached your ideal body when you feel that your existence is a blessing to others and this may even have nothing to do with your physical shape and everything to do with the love that you have for yourself and the love that you share for other people.

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Obesity isn’t always caused by eating ‘too’ much

A lot of overweight people will tell you one thing…

That they don’t actually eat that much.

And I believe them.

Many factors contribute to weight gain, not just quantity of food

Aside from metabolic diseases, there can be many reasons for weight gain…

  • Genetics
  • Not eating breakfast, but consuming more food at night time
  • Too many simple carbohydrates like sugar
  • Lack of fruits and vegetables
  • Less than 6 hours of sleep
  • Stress from work, family, life, and weight
  • Insufficient quantity or quality of exercise

You gotta give your body a reason to burn that fat

I am all about nutrients. I care more about the nutrient-density of my food than any other factor.

The reason fruit and vegetables aid weight loss is not just because they are low-calorie. Actually, fruits and vegetables contain valuable antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients (many of which are still being discovered scientifically) that support the natural function of the human body.

Fat-burning is Natural

Our bodies are often utilizing fat for energy.

The people who lose weight are the people who burn more fat than they store. On the opposite side, the people who gain weight are people who store more fat than they burn — but they are STILL burning some fat everyday.

Ideally, you want to optimize fat burning by feeding the LEAN tissue in your body (especially muscles, but also organs). You also want to feed your bones to maintain healthy bone mineral density.

Without the proper nutrients, your body will store toxins in the fat while leeching minerals and amino acids from other parts of your body.

Fool-proof weight loss

Everyone can lose weight, I really believe that.

Here’s a simple way that WORKS:

  1. Eggs for breakfast
  2. Fruit for snack (different varieties of fruits)
  3. Quinoa + Vegetables + Guacamole for lunch
  4. Handful of nuts for afternoon snack (almonds, sesame seeds, and a brazil nut)
  5. Salmon + Vegetables for dinner
  6. Unflavored Yogurt 1 hour before bed

Continue this, and try to add some variety to it as well.

This isn’t “six meals” per day. It’s actually only three meals, with three snacks. By separating fruits from meals, you can aid digestion and keep your body energized.

It works, but are you dedicated enough to try it?

It has never been about eating less.

It has ALWAYS been about Eating Right

Eating right is about eating nutrient-dense foods at the right time during the day.

What is it that you are doing right currently?

What is is that you can do today to benefit your goals?

I’m not fat — I just have big bones: Self Deception and Weight Loss

Are you really being real with yourself and your weight?

At a training event for weight loss, when the topic of Body Mass Index came up, one associate made a startling announcement.

She exclaimed, “I don’t think the body mass index is correct, because at my height it says I’m obese, and that’s just not right.

As we looked on, the entire room became silent — her blind spot was very evident to everyone around her.

Why do we underestimate our body size?

The mind is a tricky instrument. There are professional bodybuilders who look in the mirror and still see that skinny kid they used to be from high school. Similarly, there are obese people who feel that as long as they are healthy, their weight is acceptable.

Self-deception is a powerful tool for protection

I remember reading a book in college called Why We Lie: The Evolutionary Roots of Deception and the Unconcious Mind, which argued that there exists both synergistic and competing compartments within the brain.

Consider this: we are bombarded by billions of bytes of information per second, yet our reality is clear and comprehensible. How? Behind the scenes, our brains filter the information that it deems “important” and sends that information to our conscious mind.

Your conscious mind contains only the reality that you are currently aware of. You know your name, your birthday, whether or not you are hungry or thirsty — this is easy information. Yet, we all have blind spots — information that we don’t even realize is missing from our reality.

This may be explained as a self-defense mechanism because sometimes, the truth does hurt. Cold, hard realities can destroy an already sensitive self esteem.

Does it make sense to free ourselves from this?

Awareness of Yourself will help you become a high achiever

How many epiphanies does it take to realize that a particular lifestyle is unhealthy and needs to change?

Self-Awareness is the ultimate personal power. It is a matter of relationships. Understanding your own needs and desires helps you relate to others in positive ways, but more importantly helps your own relationship to yourself.

When it comes to fitness, we all have to negotiate with ourselves. Do you really want that pizza?

The difference between people who fail and those who succeed are the ones who can successfully negotiate with their inner self and consistently win.

Self-awareness is a bountiful resource, it is a life power, and it is so richly and so organically you.

No one can take your self awareness away from you, they can only contribute if you choose to let them.

So choose to accept this gift

At Ellison Fitness, we believe emotional intelligence is the key revolution in leadership. As a Personal Trainer, I do not wish to develop a following, but instead to cultivate and empower each person’s inner leadership.

The self-awareness, the negotiating power, and the success comes not from external sources, but from the most important being to ever exist: You.