Long-Term Diets For a Lifetime of Great Health

Obesity increases the risk of a number of diseases, including cardiovascular disease; type 2 diabetes; osteoarthritis; postmenopausal breast cancer; and cancer of the uterus, colon, kidney,and esophagus. All of these often lead to premature disability and death. Fat is considered the new tobacco by The Heart and Stroke Foundation in Canada. They report that the number of overweight and obese people has risen by 60 percent since the 1970s and the number of deaths directly related to obesity has doubled in the last 15 years.

We have read statistics from other sources that say 30 percent of U.S. children are overweight, almost six times the number in the 1980s. Type 2 diabetes among children is at an all-time high.CNN doesn’t remind us about the tragedy of approximately 2,000 people dying per day of heart disease, but we all hear about the latest shark attack. Something is wrong with this picture! Isn’t it ironic that your chances of dying from heart disease are about one in two, and your chances of dying from a shark attack are about one in 300 million?

Most people attempt to get in shape for short-term, ego bound reasons. They want to lose weight so desperately they make statements like, “Even if it’s gonna kill me!” And why? “Summer is four weeks away.” “My fortieth birthday is coming up.” “My best friend just lost 10 pounds.” “I’m going on vacation.” “It’s my high school reunion this spring.” “I just made a bet with my co-worker.” “I just lost a bet with my co-worker.”

Losing weight is still the number-one reason for most people to start a program and our “quick-fix” society is inundated by a plethora of products and supplements “guaranteed” to work fast. Sure, you might get some results, but statistics show that less than 5 percent of all dieters experience long-term success. Most of us know people who have thrown themselves into a Herculean workout and starvation diet to get into that small dress or suit.

Those intense efforts may bring immediate results-that’s what makes them attractive-but they aren’t maintainable.It’s like cramming all night for the big exam. Sure, you might pass, but the knowledge is soon lost. Short-term, ego-driven goals do not lead to long-lasting habits or results. You need long-term, powerful reasons that will inspire a lifetime of great health.