One in four Americans is obese, according to a recent study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Tired of being part of that statistic? Do something about it. Don't think of it as going on a diet. Instead think of losing weight -- and keeping it off -- as a healthy lifestyle.
According to a study published in a July 2007 edition of the "New England Journal of Medicine," 66 percent of American adults are overweight, a number that has increased by 23 to 31 percent in recent years. Carrying extra weight significantly increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure and cancer. Lose even a modest number of pounds -- as little as 5 percent of your total body weight -- and you'll start to see health benefits including lower blood pressure, cholesterol levels and blood sugars.
While there isn't a secret to losing weight and keeping it off, making a commitment to do so and setting realistic goals is a good way to start. According to the CDC, people who lost one to two pounds per week were the most successful in maintaining their weight loss over the long term, and almost six out of 10 people who have lost substantial amounts of weight kept the weight off more than a year.
Did You Know?
On average, we're all prone to gaining approximately two pounds each year. Eating one less cookie a day will prevent you from packing on those extra pounds.