By Donna Wagstaff, M.D.
Family Practice Specialist
St. Anthony’s Medical Center
It’s that time of year again – time to make your New Year’s resolutions. If you’re like many Americans, you may make the decision to hit the gym more often to lose those extra holiday pounds.
You’re not alone. People often gain weight in the winter because they eat more and exercise less due to the cold weather. The result is less energy and more pounds.
Despite Americans’ ongoing obsession with dieting, the sad truth is we are getting fatter. According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the early 1990s 56 percent of American adults were overweight and 23 percent were obese. The most recent figures show 68 percent are now overweight, with one-third of those obese.
The solution is simple (but not easy) – get into shape now. Do it because you want to live a long and healthy life, set a good example for your children and take control of your body.
It’s not glamorous, it’s not sexy, it’s not fun – and, don’t kid yourself, it’s not easy. Riding a bike when you’d rather be riding your easy chair takes resolve. Playing a pick-up game of basketball instead of picking up some fast food takes commitment.
Eating healthy and exercising regularly has to be a conscious lifestyle change. The good news is, it’s never too late to start – you haven’t missed the January deadline.
One word of caution – before starting any diet and/or exercise program, consult your family doctor to be sure it’s the right program for you. Your doctor also can offer additional tips for eating healthy and exercising safely.
Watch the attached video or visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAwP6rucxrw&feature=youtu.be for some ideas to help tip the scales in your favor.
Dr. Wagstaff, a family practitioner with a special interest in women’s health, is a member of St. Anthony’s Physician Organization. She practices at Telegraph Road Family Medicine, 4438 Telegraph Road, 314-543-5996. For a referral to any St. Anthony’s physician, call 314-ANTHONY (268-4669) or 1-800-554-9550 or visit http://www.stanthonysmedcenter.com/sapo/telegraph.asp.