Carrying around extra weight or battling obesity can hold you back in life. However, losing excess body fat on a proven program leads to life benefits beyond the scale. Many people wonder, “How much fat would I have to lose to see and feel a difference?”
Creating a Weight Loss Plan
Surprisingly significant benefits can be realized quickly. “Even a modest weight loss of 5 to 10 percent of your total body weight is likely to produce health benefits, such as improvements in blood pressure, blood cholesterol, and blood sugars,” according to the CDC. In a study done by the National Institute for Health, 5% weight loss was confirmed as an important threshold. The institute sums it up by saying, “You don’t have to lose 50 pounds to get important health benefits.”
On a well-designed plan, you can drop 5% quickly and experience real, noticeable results. A healthy program:
- Lowers carbohydrate intake sufficiently enough to reverse insulin resistance. This is the root cause of most obesity.
- Optimizes protein intake for proper individual balance to preserve lean tissue (including heart and other muscles)
- Increases the amount of alkalizing non-starchy vegetables, water, and other minerals to help reduce or offset inflammation caused by excess fat
- Balances electrolytes
Benefits of Fat Loss
The positive impact of reducing inflammation through fat loss cannot be overstated, but we often overlook additional benefits that can be very empowering. Fast results (early on) help with motivation–and for many people, staying motivated is half the battle. As you weigh your options, consider these benefits of losing fat “beyond the scale.”
1) Increased Mental Health
Physical health and mental health cannot be separated. People rarely begin a weight-loss plan to increase their mental health, but it is one of the key benefits you can’t measure on your scale.
For example, the US National Library of Medicine conducted a study establishing a direct correlation between obesity and depression. Dr. Mark Hyman, the author of Broken Brain, supports this, noting the connection between increased inflammation and related aging diseases such as dementia. He states:
“A recent study published in Neurology looked at inflammatory markers of 1,633 middle-aged (average age of 53) participants. After twenty-four years, they used an M.R.I. and a memorization task to test the memory and brain volume of the participants. ‘Compared to participants with no elevated midlife inflammatory markers, participants with elevations in three or more markers had, on average, 5% smaller hippocampal and Alzheimer disease signature region volumes.’”
2) Decreased Diabetic Risk
One in six adults in the U.S. (34 million) has type 2 diabetes, and one in three (88 million) are prediabetic. The CDC notes 25% of prediabetic people will develop full-blown type 2 diabetes in the next 5 years, and over 70% of them will develop it over the longer term.
Fat stores calories, but it also stores adipokines – a term most of us aren’t even aware of. Adipokines interact directly with insulin levels, inflammation, and blood sugar levels. Fat loss reduces the amount of storage of adipokines in the body and can prevent an accelerated pathway to type 2 diabetes.
3) Fewer Aches and Pains
Higher body percentage fat leads to inflammation that can be felt in our joints. The more our knees and joints are asked to support unhealthy fat levels, the more we experience increased aches and pains. As fat is reduced, inflammation is reduced and mobility is improved. This can lead to increased enjoyment of everyday life. People often regain the ability (and desire) to play, exercise, and interact with others.
The enjoyment of activities like walking, cycling, rowing, and swimming increases as your body returns to its designed weight and structure. The absence of pain means increased pleasure in everyday activities.
4) Increased Energy for Increased Activity
People decreasing fat also experience a boost in energy levels. What might cause fatigue today can become something you desire tomorrow. Clients who engage in a healthy keto diet, for example, often describe the sensation of waking up craving physical activity. As they feel healthier, they can begin to experience a more active lifestyle.
While this may seem obvious, we often overlook the fact that obesity can lead to lethargic living. Lethargic lifestyles are a leading cause of obesity and weight gain. The converse is also true: getting healthy can lead to a higher energy level, helping sustain weight management.
5) Heart Health is Improved
he Harvard Health Letter cited that weight loss leads to heart-health benefits including reduced blood pressure. Heart health is a key reason to lose unhealthy fat; your heart is the core of your physique, pumping blood throughout your entire body and powering everything. Excessive fat puts a strain on your heart.
Reduced cholesterol, blood pressure, heart rate, and heart stress are all known benefits of weight loss. When done right, you can find fast and healthy ways to drop weight (losing fat while retaining muscle). People often feel this difference early in a healthy weight loss protocol. Simply put, when excess fat is reduced, your organs have more physical space to operate as designed.
6) Diminished Heartburn
Another benefit cited by the Harvard Health Letter is reduced heartburn. People who deal with acid reflux and heartburn almost always notice a reduction – if not elimination – of this painful condition. Consuming fewer carbs, sugars, and alcohol contribute to this. However, when your body is compressed by pounds of excess fat, your digestive system cannot work as designed. By eliminating unnecessary fat (and the related inflammation), your digestive system can return to better functionality.
7) Increased Self-Confidence
Another benefit of losing fat is increased self-confidence. When people aren’t healthy, it can negatively impact their self-image. Our culture often puts great importance on physical appearance, causing unhealthy body image issues, but as people begin to prioritize health over body image, confidence grows. Healthy confidence can go far beyond our obsession with being skinny, trim, or cut.
Everyone operates optimally from a place of confidence. A quality plan with supportive coaching can increase confidence impacting every part of life.
The goal of a healthy weight-loss protocol is more than losing weight, it’s about acquiring the life you could be living. Yes, dropping pounds can feel really good, but may not be healthy if losing weight is your primary goal. However, making health your primary goal will lead to fat reduction, healthy weight loss, and a physique capable of supporting an abundant life.
To learn more about effective weight loss methods and the benefits of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, explore the rest of our blog.