• Tackling Excess Body Fat

    Tackling weight and excess body fat is a constant battle for many people. When it comes to weight control, there is no such thing as a miracle pill that will help you to lose that excess body fat. Before I discuss ways to “lose weight,” I would like to briefly discuss the role of body types and weight.

    According to Ayurveda, there are three bodily humors or energies known as doshas. These three doshas are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Each of the them play a role in the functioning of our physiology, but they also make up our constitution or body type. An individual can have one of or a combination of two, or all three as their body type. An individual whose body type is primarily Vata, for example, will generally be on the slimmer side. Those who are primarily Pitta tend to be of a medium size, yet they look physically fit. And those with a Kapha constitution may be on the bolder side. However, a person with a Kapha structure and built does not mean that they are obese or that they need to lose weight and a skinny individual does not mean that they are healthy and in perfect shape.

    A good tool for measuring how much excess body fat you may have is to calculate your body mass index. The body mass index will calculate your levels of fat based upon your height and weight. If in doubt, go see your doctor and they will let you know whether or not you need to lose weight.

    Diet and exercise are the two most important factors for maintaining a healthy weight. Exercise means at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular workout, such as running, dancing, and biking every day. Furthermore, you should do another 30 minutes of strength training and flexibility. That is a total of one hour everyday, in which you dedicate to your health and your physiology. Cardiovascular exercise will help burn the calories and the fat. Strength training will help with turning that excess fat into muscle.

    Like the classic saying, “you are what you eat,” is very important when considering your diet. Losing weight isn’t about which 10-day diet scheme you utilize. It is about permanently establishing a healthy diet. I guarantee you that if you go on a 10-day diet that you might lose some weight, but after the diet is over, you will gain that weight right back. If you seriously want to lose the weight and keep it off, then watch what you eat. Eat lots of cooked vegetables in olive oil with spices such as cumin, fennel, ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and cardamom. Green leafys are excellent. Pulses, lentils, and legumes, are a great source of protein, eat those with very little rice. Minimize your intake of carbohydrates. Have meats such as chicken and turkey, rather than beef and pork. But all in all, whatever you eat, make sure you can digest it. Avoid snacking in between meals and only after your previous meal has digested should you eat something. Favor healthy snacks such as fruits and nuts over the cookies and ice cream. Also avoid caffeine, processed sugars, and high fructose corn syrup. All of these will slow down digestion and will create excess fat.

    In order to lose weight, you must have a proper diet along with a regular exercise routine. You cannot effectively lose weight by following only one or the other. Our physiologies do not work like that. They need a balance of both. Also do not skip meals if you are trying to lose weight. You want to eat and eat regularly. Keep in mind though, that everyone has some fat because you need some fat for your physiology to function. According to Ayurveda, one of the main functions of fat is to lubricate. It lubricates your joints, and keeps the unctuousness and luster of the skin. When you adapt a healthier routine to lose weight, be sure to continue with the healthy diet and routine. After losing that 10 pounds, don’t go back to your old habits, or you will gain all of that weight back.

    Happy healthy eating!

    Varsha


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