Q: I have been overweight all my life. I have been trying to lose weight without much happening. I walk a minimum of 1/2 hour a day, eat healthy, drink plenty of water and think positive thoughts. What else can I do? Is there some magic solution to weight loss or what?? Please let me know so I can lose this awful weight. I am SICK of being fat!! Thank you!!
A: The struggle to lose weight is a burden that many deal with, and it is so disheartening when you seem to be doing all the “right” things and nothing is happening.
Since this is a lifelong problem, I would want to make certain that there was no physical reason that you are having so much trouble losing weight. Has your doctor checked your thyroid function (other symptoms would include always feeling cold, thin hair, depression, fatigue and constipation) to see if you have hypothryoid? Or have you been tested for polycystic ovarian syndrome? If you haven’t already, then these would be discussions to bring up at your next doctor’s appointment.
You also need to examine whether there are emotional issues surrounding food that you are not paying attention to. You could still be overeating (consuming more calories than you need) even if you are eating only healthy foods. Even healthy foods have calories!
You should also assess your exercise routine. While you may be active in a planned way for 30 minutes a day–which is an excellent starting point–you may not be getting your body revved up enough to burn those extra calories that you need to burn. The duration and intensity of exercise needed to lose weight is different from that needed to show improvement in cardiovascular health.
Dr. Brent Ridge is the health expert for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. You can call and ask him a question live every Tuesday at 2 p.m. Eastern on Sirius Satellite Radio, Channel 112 (1.866.675.6675). You can also follow along as he learns to grow his own food and raise goats on his farm in upstate New York by visiting www.beekman1802.com.
Got a health question for Dr. Brent? E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.