5 Medical Benefits of Losing Weight
Doctors around the world advise overweight patients to lose weight. Even when people feel fine, carrying excess weight can have harmful effects on the body. Approaching or achieving an ideal weight can reverse or lessen these effects and even prevent some health conditions. Here are some of the medical benefits associated with losing weight.
Lower blood pressure
Losing 5 percent to 10 percent of your body weight can lower your blood pressure by five points — a significant step for people with moderate hypertension. Reducing your sodium intake and eating a healthy diet can lower your blood pressure even more. Ask your doctor about low-calorie and heart-healthy diet plans.
Lower risk of diabetes
Losing weight can benefit your blood sugar level. When you are overweight, your body becomes less sensitive to insulin, a condition known as insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is a major predictor of diabetes. A 7-percent decrease in your weight coupled with some physical activity, such as walking, can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Reduced sleep apnea
Sleep apnea is a condition which causes sufferers to wake up multiple times during the night to gasp for air. Interrupting normal sleep cycles can lead to high blood pressure, memory problems, and exhaustion. Being overweight can make sleep apnea worse. Losing weight can significantly reduce the frequency of sleep apnea episodes and improve overall health.
Fewer heart issues
Overweight bodies require more heart capacity to pump a greater volume of blood. This extra work enlarges the heart cavity and makes the heart muscles thicker. It can also lead to heart failure. Reducing your weight by 10 percent can lower your risk of developing a heart condition, regardless of whether you lose weight quickly or if you lose it slowly but consistently.
Losing weight can increase your good cholesterol and lower your bad cholesterol. It only takes a modest 5- to 10-percent weight loss to raise your good cholesterol (HDL) by five points. A high level of HDL indicates a lower risk of developing heart issues.
These are just a few of the medical benefits associated with weight loss, but they are some of the most important. When you can’t get motivated to exercise or stick to a diet plan, just remember how even a small weight loss can benefit your health.