Do you know that in the adult population over 66 percent of people are overweight and over 33 percent are considered obese? In fact, obesity is now considered a risk factor for heart disease, and if you have too much fat you are at higher risk for heart disease. Health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are common in the overweight population.
It is important to maintain a healthy weight to maintain a healthy heart. How would it feel if you carried a 20 pound weight around every day? By shedding extra weight you are also lessening the burden on your heart, lungs, blood vessels and skeleton. You will be surprised by how much more energy you have when you cut your weight down to a manageable place.
How to lose weight
If you are overweight, you can reduce your risk for heart disease by successfully losing weight and keeping it off. You also can produce a dramatic blood pressure reduction and lower cholesterol in appropriate ways by exercising, and by eating more fruits and vegetables. Losing as few as five or 10 pounds can provide a meaningful impact on your heart health.
Know Your Calorie Needs
The first step in losing weight is determining how many calories you need to survive. This number is different for everyone, as our bodies all function differently. A 200-pound man can consume much more food without gaining weight than a 100-pound woman. You can calculate this number for yourself.
By tracking what you are eating each day, you can learn a lot about your eating habits. Estimate the amount of calories you burn each day and keep track of the amount of food calories you’re eating as well. If you balance what you are putting in with what is being burned in exercise you will maintain your weight! If you burn more calories than you eat in calories, you will lose weight!
Emory Healthcare is a proud sponsor of American Heart Association’s My Heart. My Life Campaign that promotes My Life Check – Life’s Simple 7. Losing weight is one of the seven steps to a healthier heart. To view some of the other blog posts with ways to improve your heart health, visit the older posts in the Emory Heart & Vascular Heart blog.
Learn more about the Emory Heart & Vascular Center’s Heart Disease Prevention Program.
About Dr. Cornelius Flowers
Dr. Flowers is a cardiologist at the Emory Heart & Vascular Center. He practices at the Emory Heart & Vascular Center at Hillandale and the Emory Heart & Vascular Center at Decatur. He specializes in cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension and preventive cardiology. He is very active in the Dekalb County community and is passionate about educating individuals about how to prevent heart disease. To contact Dr. Flowers, please call 404-778-8100 for the Hillandale office and 404-296-1256 for the Decatur office.