“68 kgs! O gosh! My ideal weight is 65 kgs. I am 3 kgs overweight. Time to start dieting from tomorrow!”
Most of us must have been through the above mentioned situation and had the same obvious reaction. This is testimonial to the fact that we have gone extremely far with these numerics. Over the past few decades in our quest for that perfect body image, we have been trying to achieve an ideal body weight. Somewhere between ‘six pack abs’ and ‘size zero’ we have lost sight of why we needed to lose weight in the first place.
Numbers are all that have remained. We are working towards minimizing numbers like weight, inches and now BMI … And in order to achieve something ideal we are chasing another set of numbers like calories, grams of protein etc. Our bodies are unnecessarily dragged into this mindless number game and this is the reason we consider people who are ‘overweight’ as unhealthy beings. Such ignorance!
The battle of the bulge has become an unending struggle for many.
A slight increase in weight and we get into this vigorous diet and exercise regimen till we attain our ideal weight, don’t we?
Ask yourself this question – What will make you happier- Fitting into your favourite pair of jeans or a few kgs off the weighing scale?
Clearly the simple joys of life outweigh the complicated jargon of numbers….
Our notion of a healthy body image has moved from inner health to just plain numbers, weight, inches on our waist and now BMI (Body Mass Index is calculated as per the height-weight ratio).
While being conscious about our weight is definitely a good idea but get pernickety about it is definitely not good for our physical and mental well-being. Since childhood, we have associated being thin equals to being fit and being overweight means being unfit and getting bogged down with health problems, isn’t it ? Well, it’s not that simple.
To understand this concept better, let us consider the case of John and Peter who work in the same office.
John is 35 years old, weighs 80 kgs and his height is 5 feet 8 inches. So, technically he is overweight with a BMI of 27.6. One look at him and you might think he needs to lose weight else he will have serious medical conditions.
Peter weights 70 kgs and his age and height are similar to John. His BMI is 24.2. You see him and think he should be fine health wise.
Now, before you term either one of them as healthier than the other,
Let us check out their lifestyles.
John plays tennis regularly, climbs 3 flights of stairs twice a day, loves food , has no medical conditions and thrives on high energy levels.
Peter has a very sedentary lifestyle, he rarely exercises, gets fatigued easily and in fact his recent blood reports indicated borderline diabetes and cholesterol levels.
With BMI being hailed as the indicator of your health status, you must have thought Peter is healthier.
Oops! But their lifestyle depicts an altogether different truth.
It’s time to look beyond the weighing scale and gauge our health through these different parameters-
- Digestive system functioning
- Energy levels
- Physical fitness
First let’s assess our digestive system.
Are you suffering from constipation, acidity or bloating regularly?
If the answer is in the negative, time to be positive.
Lack of constipation means you’re including fiber in your diet, and lack of acidity and bloating manifest that you’re definitely not overeating. No need to fret, is there? And yes, the solution to constipation also lies in food.
Time to check our energy levels.
Ask yourself, do you feel energetic throughout the day? If the answer is a yes, well time to rejoice because thriving on good energy levels throughout the day because indicates you’re making the correct food choices.
Now, let’s get our vitals checked – blood pressure, blood sugar levels and lipid profile.
If all these three are well in control, you’re definitely on the healthy track.
Next, let’s analyze our sleep cycle.
Do you to wake up a couple of times at night? Do you experience difficulty in breathing while sleeping? Do you snore? Well, if you get a sound sleep of 6-8 hours and feel fresh when you wake up in the morning, there is simply no need to lose sleep over the excess 2-3 kilograms.
Lastly, let’s take a look at our physical fitness.
Can you climb a few flights of stairs without trouble? Can you move around doing your chores without any difficulty? Are you able to exercise without feeling fatigued? If the answer is a yes, then there is absolutely no need to worry about those extra 2-3 kilograms.
Now that we have ticked our boxes we can definitely declare ourselves as healthy and fit.
Yes, we need to make an effort to shed those kilos (if they go too overboard) to keep knee pain, back pain, diabetes and cholesterol away (which will come along if we don’t watch our weight) but there is no need to be fixated with it, is it?
Eating what we like and including some form of physical exercise will surely get us there.
Our health goes beyond our weight. After all, weight is just a number…….
And to make all of this easier we have an app that helps you manage your portion sizes, pair the right foods and gives real-time feedback for your meals. From weight loss to lifestyle changes to mindful eating to just enjoying food without guilt. This app has it all. Download the app here.
Since we believe that we must indulge the foodie within us, we have also devised occasional treats for you to enjoy without fretting about the weighing scale.
Eat what you love and love what you eat- we at bon happetee definitely help you do that!
Vishruta is a nutritionist by profession and a writer by heart. Content writing and menu planning have become her passions over the past few years. Love food, love life — is her mantra.