A pound of weight gained here and a pound of weight gained there – one innocent pound a year is barely noticeable right?? Well, after 20 years it adds up to a few extra clothes sizes, an additional chin, a gradual protrusion to a 6-month-pregnant-looking ponzone over your waistband, and more. Oh for the grace of the gradual gain, hmmmmmm.
When this slow slide down the slippery slope begins it’s easy to come up with a multitude of excuses:
- “Oh, I’m not working out as much now that I’m working full time.”
- “Gee, I better change the cleaners I’m bring my clothes to, they’re shrinking my stuff.”
- “Hmmmm, I think the cut of these trousers have changed. Now I need a bigger size AND cut.”
- “I better hold my chin up when I look in the mirror so I won’t be able to see that double chin…. a true sign of aging.”
YA right!! Who are you kidding?? Only you, that’s who.
Enough is Enough!! Well folks, our wake up call is sounding and it’s time we stopped kidding ourselves – pronto already. The New England Journal of Medicine recently published key findings on a 20 year long study conducted by Harvard experts. They tracked over 120,000 men and women who were healthy and not obese at the beginning of the study. And somehow they found out what we seemingly already know, so listen up!!
A Gain is a Gain is a Gain Firstly, on average, the participants gained almost 17 pounds over this 20 year duration – that sneaky, unobtrusive 1 pound weight gain per year. Stack up 20 pounds of butter on your kitchen table Bucko for the visual to get real. Do I need to say it a-gain??
Gaining Foodie Fundamentals Here’s the kicker – they found the people most likely to gain weight regularly ate potatoes (in all forms: French fries, potato chips, even boiled, baked or mashed), processed meat, meat, sugary drinks (including 100% fruit juice), sweets (including desserts) and refined grains. How UNsurprising is that??!! NOT very, that’s how.
Get a Lifestyle Here’s more – other lifestyle factors that add to the gain include daily TV watching, daily alcohol consumption and not getting your 6-8 hours of sleep each day. Gee, I think this sounds familiar too….
Broken Record of Goodness They also found people who lost a smidgen of weight over time ate more fruit, vegetables, nuts, whole grains and yoghurt. Even more UNsurprising, right??!! Is this nugget now ready to sink in??
Who’s Zoomin’ Who? Sometimes we need a boomerang in the head to knock us out of our foolish complacency and this study is it. We need to stop kidding ourselves, making excuses and hiding behind hidden truths, especially when the truth isn’t hidden anymore. I still believe anything in moderation is ok, I am living proof of that notion. I’ve written before about defining moderation and perhaps this study is the proverbial exclamation point on that – WE NEED TO DEFINE MODERATION.
Evaluate Your Plate Keep a food record or better yet a food-photo-diary for 4 to 7 days and review some of the details I mentioned above. Because if you see those food items that the study shows to contribute to weight gain in your record every single day then that isn’t moderation, is it?? Now it’s time to face the music and make a few sound goals. After all, reality is bliss.