The driving force behind a weight loss journey may start out with the deep desire to feel better about your reflection in the mirror. When you begin to devote yourself to exercise and switch to eating health food, it can make all the difference in how you see yourself and while looking better is an amazing perk of weight loss, it is not the most impressive perk by far. These eight endlessly beneficial perks are more than enough reason to commit to losing the weight and keeping it off.
Improved Mental Health
The many health benefits of losing a little weight are as vast as the sea but one thing you will notice right away, even before weight loss begins, is that exercise improves your mood. When you workout, your body naturally begins to release endorphins, a feel good hormone that reduces stress and increases feelings of happiness. Overall, science has already proven that those who exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle have vastly lower rates of depression. This may be, in part, due to the fact that endorphins are so closely related to serotonin, a chemical you will find both naturally in the brain and manufactured in antidepressants.
Another benefit of the endorphins released during exercise is that these little wonders are nature’s own pain relievers. Endorphins have an analgesic affect and work to reduce pain from the inside out. This is one reason many doctors recommend exercise to ward off painful menstrual periods and for some people, even prevent migraines. Aside from endorphins, weight reduction itself is also a natural pain reliever as losing weight can lessen stress on joints and reduce impact upon walking. Many people find back pain and feet pain are rendered nonexistent by simply losing a few pounds and keeping the weight off.
Increase in Good Cholesterol
Thankfully, medicine has gotten very good at lowering the bad kind of cholesterol with prescription medications. However, that is not the case with good cholesterol that can significantly reduce your risk for developing heart disease later in life. Science shows that just a 5 percent decrease in your current weight can up your good cholesterol by a whopping 5 point elevation. While that may not seem like much, doctors agree it is quite impressive.
Triglycerides are fatty particles in the bloodstream that are harmful in large amounts and while everyone has them, some have them at unhealthy levels. Reducing weight, even in seemingly minuscule amounts can lower your reading by 40 points and greatly reduce your risk of stroke and heart attack in the future.
Reduction of Inflammation
Inflammation is a marker for many health conditions, some common and some not so common. Fat cells can produce certain kinds of inflammation and inflammation, in turn, can lead to clots and stroke. Decreasing your weight can reduce inflammation and prevent damage to your vascular system.
Decrease in Sleep Apnea
Sleep Apnea occurs when someone does not get enough oxygen while sleeping due to extended pauses in their breathing pattern. A CPAP machine can help those with sleep apnea breathe easier but weight loss can help sufferers to slowly depend on the machine less and less. While this may seem like a small feat, those who rely on a CPAP machine describe it as a real nuisance and well worth a little work to toss out the window.
While not everyone who loses weight will be able to reverse their diabetes all together, some can and have. Even for those who are left with residual diabetes or those whose condition is severe, weight loss can greatly improve health and help to control blood sugar levels. In some instances, losing just a few pounds alone can do the work of a prescription diabetes medication.
Decrease in Hypertension
30 percent of all high blood pressure suffers are diagnosed because their weight is the only contributing factor. Beta blockers can be hard on your kidneys, thus many doctors ask patients to work diligently to lose the weight which will reduce blood pressure readings to manageable levels. Often times, weight loss, diet and a good exercise routine will cure high blood pressure without ever requiring medications.
The health benefits of weight loss are far too numerous to list. From the way you look to the way you feel, losing the extra weight can give you the energy you never knew you had to do the things you always wanted to do… Like biking with your son, going on that long trip with your spouse or just getting up in the morning to greet a brand new day of possibilities. From renewed energy to relief from serious health conditions, shedding the pounds can help you also shed a negative prognosis. When you take time to care about yourself and your health, your body will show its gratitude by helping you to feel better and, most important of all… live longer.