All Woman

340 pound asthmatic wants to lose weight

Monday, July 23, 2012    

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Dear Donovan,

I'm extremely overweight (340 pounds) and I need your advice. I am a bad eater — I don't eat my meals on time and sometimes I eat only one time a day.

I am asthmatic so I do steroids from time to time. Whenever I eat one time per day, I tend to eat a lot. I am sick of this. I wasn't born like this. I was small up to age 23. I am now 32 and I believe enough is enough. I have been to nutritionists and they could not help me. I am in dire need of your help.

Sorry to hear about your weight challenge. It is now time to seriously do something about it and get results.

I am sure that you know that being overweight is a serious risk factor for many lifestyle disorders, for example strokes, hypertension, diabetes etc.

In order to reduce your weight, you are going to have to make some lifestyle changes. You can start by making a list of all the reasons you need to lose weight and assess carefully if these reasons are very important to you.

You will also need to love yourself more than anything or anyone else in this world.

You will most definitely need to make some changes in the food you are eating and the time intervals in between meals. If you allow yourself to get too hungry, you are likely to eat a lot when you do eat. It is possible to go hungry all day and then eat one meal of about 2500 calories, which also puts a lot of stress on the digestive system.

It is best to eat three small meals throughout the day so that you are better able to control your appetite. However, in order to lose weight, the smaller meals must have fewer calories overall than what you were eating before and you would also need to make better food choices.

In order to jumpstart your weight loss programme, you will have to cut your calorie intake and also increase your calorie output. You can reduce your calorie intake by eating less and also trying to make your foods healthy. In order to increase your calorie output, you will have to incorporate more physical activities and exercise. I have found in my practice that people who are not eating well are less likely to be doing exercise. In a practical way, you can start with half an hour of exercise daily. It would be better to do more cardiovascular exercises than muscle building exercises.

You also need to start eating breakfast. You can have, for example, two to three fruits or steamed calaloo with two fingers of green banana and a slice of pumpkin. For your mid-morning snack, you could have 12 ounces of coconut water or one fruit. You could also cut lunch into two and eat the other half for dinner, or you could just cut your lunch and or dinner portions in half.

For your afternoon snack, you can have coconut water, or one to two fruits. If you really get hungry, then you could have one fruit or just drink some water.

Like all drugs, steroids can have negative effects. The extent to which this occurs is dependent on the dose and the period over which these are taken.

One possible negative effect of steroids is weight gain. Steroids can affect your metabolism by suppressing the adrenal glands and affecting how the body deposits fats. Steroids can also increase your appetite, leading to weight gain, which usually leads to extra fat in the stomach.

If you address your diet and reduce mucous producing foods from the diet such as rice, milk, sugar etc, then there is a chance that you might reduce the amount of steroids needed. A reduction in weight could also help to reduce the amount of steroids needed.

We will answer your weight-related questions

Are you struggling to lose weight or just need some advice on living a healthier life? Tell us about your health issues and we'll have nutritionist and wellness coach Donovan Grant answer them for you. Grant has over 12 years experience in the fitness industry and is the owner of DG's Nutrition and Wellness Centre, Suite 16, 39 Lady Musgrave Road, Kingston 5. Send your questions to wilsonn@jamaicaobserver.com.

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