Many people are interested in shedding a few pounds because they want to fit into a dress for a special occasion or they’re concerned about how they look in a bathing suit. But for many, the weight loss journey isn’t just about losing ten pounds to drop two sizes; it’s about improving their overall health and quality of life. Studies have shown that losing 5-10% of your body weight can make a big difference. Here are five ways that losing even a small amount of weight can improve your health significantly.
Reduce your Risk for Heart Attack
There is a strong correlation between obesity and heart-related health issues. People who are overweight or obese are more at risk for developing conditions like high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Studies have shown that losing a small amount of weight can help reduce your risk for heart attack by about 50%.
Lower your Cholesterol
Small amounts of weight loss can also help lower your cholesterol significantly. When bad cholesterol levels are high, it can cause plaque deposits to build up in your arteries, restricting blood flow to your heart. High bad cholesterol levels can have deadly consequences, like stroke and heart attack.
Improve your Sleep
Have you noticed that you aren’t sleeping as well as you used to? Your sleep troubles may be related your weight. Extra weight on the body can restrict the airway, causing a potentially serious health condition called sleep apnea. Those who suffer from this condition experience periods where they actually stop breathing during sleep. Often, this results in waking multiple times during the night. Losing a small amount of weight can help reduce constriction on your airway, improving or minimizing the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Reduce your Risk for Diabetes
People who are overweight or obese have a higher risk for developing diabetes, a condition which can cause serious health complications. If left untreated, diabetes can cause nerve damage, eye issues, kidney problems, and infections. Regular exercise and small amounts of weight loss can help decrease your risk for developing diabetes.
Lower your Blood Pressure
When you have high cholesterol and plaque builds up in your arteries, it makes it difficult for the blood to travel through effectively. As a result, your blood pressure can increase. Those who suffer from high blood pressure are prone to developing life threatening complications like heart and kidney failure. Losing 10% of your body weight can help significantly reduce your blood pressure and your risk.
If you’re interested in losing weight to help improve your overall health, there are a number of approaches you can take. Some people benefit from modifying their diet and exercising more often, but others have genetic conditions that make it more challenging to shed the extra weight. If you have concerns about your weight, talk with your primary care doctor about your options. The road to improving your health and your quality of life may be challenging, but the end results are worth it.