Most teens are resorting to this very option. With increasing intake of junk food and horribly unhealthy diets, the number of obese kids between the ages 14-18 has increased three fold. And now they are resorting to the option of bariatric surgery.
Bariatric surgery or weight-loss surgery is a procedure wherein the size of the stomach is reduced — often by removing up to 90 per cent of the organ. The surgery reduces the quantity of food the individual can consume.Thereby helping them lose weight. Dr. H Chandalia, eminent Diabetologist, says “This surgery is very effective but there are restrictions like you can only drink a very small amount of water at a time which may cause discomfort. In a way these surgeries are just one way to impose the lifestyle changes which the patient could otherwise not inculcate”.
Where the average size of a teenager’s stomach is about the size of a football, post surgery it becomes the size of an egg. The after effects result in immediate rapid weight loss and the individual almost never has a full meal again.
Not a Standard Procedure
There are certain situations where the child’s health is at stake, like with high BP or type 2 Diabetes, where this surgery is the only option out. But it is being clubbed with a well balanced diet structure and psychotherapy; post the operation, to help the kids deal with their condition.
But it is not a permanent solution for losing weight as without a balanced diet and proper nutrition the person can gain weight again. For teenagers who are not dangerously over weight, and have no other complications, they should resort to safer and natural methods of weight loss. Most doctors are not even sure of the consequences of changing an adolescents’ digestive system like this. Many turn down all or almost all teenagers as they do not consider this option as viable for children, especially those that come at a very young age of 12 and 13. They suggest rigorous weight loss programs instead.
While this option may become increasingly popular, especially among those who can afford it, it seems most popular among those with horrible lifestyles and high junk food intake. So instead of waiting until it comes to the point of surgery, cut down on the unhealthy food and increase your activity levels!
Losing weight was never that easy. From dieticians to nutritionists to gym trainers, they all tell you the same thing. Eat less and exercise more, keep a watch on how many calories you intake and how many you manage to shed.
But what if you had a real time monitor over how much you were consuming and how much you were shedding? One that was in your mobile and you can use throughout the day - when you eat, when you exercise. The application can even recommend a good regime!
Weight loss applications that can be downloaded in phones like blackberry, I phone and other such phones are simple, mostly free and not to mention fun and effective, according to many users.
The process is simple; immediately after you have a meal you enter what you have eaten into the application. It instantly gives you a count of the number of calories that you have taken in.
Similarly you enter the kind of exercise that you have done and for how long and it tells you how many calories you must have burned! Sounds interesting doesn’t it?
But of course a doctor’s consultation is required for check on the app as a machine cannot be relied upon a 100%.
During one of my monthly book buying binges at Crossword around 4 months ago, I came across this book called “Don’t lose your mind, LOSE YOUR WEIGHT” by author Rujuta Diwekar who is well known for being Dietician & Nutritionist for “the-size-zero-Kareena-Kapoor”. Due to some books remaining unread, it took a little while for this book’s turn to come for a read. Around 2 months back, I took it for reading. I was totally blown over by the simplicity & easy manner in which this book is written. The best part is that the book does not bore you (diet is a boring subject & holding reader’s attention consistently is tough task, I feel) & keeps flowing like an interesting storybook.
First chapter talks about the various diet fads, the myths about so-called weight-loss programs and fattening foods. Author rather makes a bold statement that “There is really nothing like ‘safe food’ or ‘fattening food’. Everything that you eat judiciously, at the right time and in the right quantity is good for you”. She then gets you to the basics of How to eat. Now, that’s something we don’t think we need to learn. But then the simple rules that Rujuta tells you change your perspective towards eating. (How do you know you are eating fast… While you are chewing food in mouth, if you keep food ready in your hands or on your spoon means you are eating fast & then that will result in overeating.) Here she rightly says that when it comes to food, think nutrients & not calories.
She then takes you to rethinking about what to eat. Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, Vitamins, Minerals, supplements & water…… She explains all these important aspects of food in language that’s not technical at all. This helps reader understand them better and use the information in his/her day-to-day food intake. (This is one big important feature of this book, as it’s not technical at all, you can take the advice there & then and start implementing it immediately). Here too she helps you understand things like whether you are drinking enough water or not…If your urine is always crystal clear (& not light yellow, dark yellow or reddish), you are drinking right quantity of water. Simple tests & rules like that help you start using the book’s advice right away.
Then she unveils the soul of her diet regime. The four principles of eating right….
Principle #1: "Eat some real food within 10-15 minutes of waking up."
Not tea or coffee but some real food…When we sleep, our blood sugar levels are dropped & we must bring them up to optimum levels. A real food (I have started eating an apple) leads to slow & steady rise of blood sugar levels. Tea & coffee actually work against this requirement as they contain caffeine (or cigarette) which increases the blood pressure, heart rate & breathing rate and make body feel “kicked”. In reality, body feels stressed but we take this as feeling awake. Stress is the biggest enemy of an efficient digestive system, the fat burning process of the body and hence, keeping body stress-free help you burn the fats at better rate. She also talks about the right potty style, the Indian Pot way. (In fact, this book has many boxes of relevant information which are spread within the chapters and they help you understand a particular point, concept or food item in detail. Some of them are Honey Lime Water / How to drink alcohol if you must / Coffee post dinner / What about sex post dinner / Tea & antioxidants / Italians & Olive Oil to name a few)
Principle # 2 - "Eat every 2 hours."
She says that you can follow this principle 2 only if you follow principle 1 because eating first thing in the morning lays down the foundation for day long hunger. This principle is derived from psychological perspective of body. Our body, when we eat at longer intervals (no breakfast, lunch at 2.00 pm & dinner at 10.30 pm), feels that it’s a starvation mode & hence, stores food (in form of fat) as it doesn’t know when the next lot of food will come its way. Also, when we eat at prolonged gaps, we tend to overeat. Eating every two hours makes body feel cared & reassured. It doesn’t feel like storing fat as it’s getting its food intake regularly. Also, when we eat at short intervals, we tend to eat less which means calorie intake is small. This simple mantra cuts down your fat stores and reduces your dependence on stimulants like tea, coffee & cigarettes.
Principle #3: "Eat more when you are active & less when you are less active"
Again the author tells you that one cannot follow the principle no. 3 unless you follow principle no. 2. Only when you actually eat all the time can you actually decrease meal size when less active and increase when more active. High activity could be both physical and mental. Activities like intense thinking, gymnasium, attending important meets are the ones where you are actively involved & are demanding a lot of energy from you. Low activity is when you are passive & do not use much of mental energies too. Activities like watching movie or TV, small chat over phone, being driven in car are considered as low activities. Eating more food when you are more active will make your body an efficient calorie burner which will increase the metabolic rate of your body. This will help you stay energetic all day long & will help you lose your fats more effectively.
Principle #4: "Finish your last meal of the day at least 2 hours prior to sleeping."
Digesting food is a calorie burner and a type of work for the body. The digestive system gets relaxed post sunset & if you overload your stomach with food in the night, most of it will get wasted or will get converted in fat. When we sleep, it’s time for body to repair the wear & tear and rejuvenate. If the stomach is full of food then, the body either starts working for digestion & ignores the rejuvenation OR ignores the digestion and works of repairing wear & tear. Both these things harm body. Keeping 2 hours gap between last meal & sleeping will help most of your food get digested and that leads to making you feel hungry in the morning. The principle 4 again ties down to principle 1.
Real Life Examples: In last two chapters, author has provided various real life examples on actual diet habits of people & analysed what’s wrong with them. Then she goes ahead & shows with minimal changes in lifestyle, how these people can shift to healthy eating habits and experience better results. The idea is to make one aware about one’s eating habits and then bring in a conscious change for better. This is typically like time & motion studies that manufacturing or process oriented industries adopt where log of activities is observed for a week or two weeks and then modifications are suggested.
This book is MUST for any adult who wants to remain fit & healthy and does not want to get cheated by the extreme diet fads & weight loss programs. When you want to cut down on your fat, the food (at least some food) is looked upon as poison. But Rujuta Diwekar brings back the old wisdom of “Anna He Purna Brahma” (The food is God). Go guys & gals, buy this book, read & implement to make you feel happy & healthy from within.
P.S.: Feel, Crossword should also keep some copies of this book in philosophy section where I frequent more. Like I believe that Godfather is not a Fiction but a Management book, I think that this book is about the eating as ‘way of life’ & hence should find a space in philosophy section too. At least, I would have come across this book earlier & reaped the benefits long back
Haven't you heard of thousand studies and papers dissecting obesity and weight gain? But here is one that talks about why some people do not gain weight no matter how much they eat. Being an anmoly in a world of overweight people, it will be interesting to know what exactly helps them stay in shape while others around them struggle to put off weight.
In BBC's Horizon documentary, they found 10 skinny people and put them on extremely high calorie diets with restriction on activity to observe how their bodies reacted to excess calories. The results were shocking while some participants put on weight, there were some, whose bodies increased their metabolism and they hardly put on any considerable weight, one participant whose body had rather than increased fat levels, had increased muscle mass. After the experiment, all the participants lost the excess weight without much efforts.
This convinced reasearchers that weight loss is not as simple as consumption of fats versus activty. There are lot of factors involved like- genetics, metabolism and psycological conditioning. They also found out that there is a biologically determined 'normal weight' that our bodies recognize and try to maintain by altering the metabolism and other functions.
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How many kilos of weight would you be willing to lose, if your company paid you to lose weight? Plenty of Kilos, right? This is exactly what is happening in the US, where over one third of the companies are offering a variety of incentives to their employees to shed those ungainly Kilos!
With a huge organization as IBM leading the fray in this trend by offering a cash incentive of $150 to all employees, who complete a 12 week web based fitness program, how could others be far behind? A thought echoed by Kevin Volpp, director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Health Incentives who says, “There’s been an explosion of interest in this”, referring to the incentive-for-health program.
Ohio Health, a Hospital chain situated in the US has achieved stupendous success by offering their employees cash incentives for weight loss. More than 9000 overweight employees signed up for the program and were armed with pedometers, to clock how much they walked per day. The more the employees walked, the more they earned, with over $377,000 already given out, Ohio Health has much more slimmer and healthier employees on their work roll!
With this trend mushrooming across the US and resulting in healthier employees, its just a time before it hits the Indian shores! So once again, how many kilos are you willing to lose ?
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