Australia: the overweight (obese) nation

Data is beginning to show that Australia is becoming an obese nation. But what does obese mean and how can all of us take care of our health? 

Defining Overweight or Obese

Obesity, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), refers to the excess fat that has accumulated on an individual, which presents health risks, and is generally caused by an energy imbalance.

An imbalanced diet is not the only factor that can cause obesity. Obesity can also be caused by the following:

  1. Lifestyle choices
  2. Lack of exercise and physical activity 
  3. Medical conditions 
  4. Genetics

If you are looking to lose weight, it is suggested to consult a medical practitioner first. 

Does nutrition factor in?

Nutrition is essential to a good diet. The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommends a diet relatively high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, poultry, fish and reduced fat dairy. 

Australian Guide to Healthy Eating
Australian Guide to Healthy Eating – Australian Government Department of Health

Studies (2011) have shown 10 percent of the total burden of disease in Australia is due to dietary risk factors. Burden of disease being the impact of a health problem measured by financial cost, mortality, morbidity and other indicators.

What should I do if I want to try losing weight?

The Dietitians Association of Australia lists the flowing ideas for those wanting to lose weight. 

  1. Try to eat mainly whole foods, including fruit and veggies, whole grain breads and cereals, dairy foods, lean meat and poultry, fish and meat alternatives such as eggs, legumes, nuts and seeds.
  2. Remember to drink plenty of water each day. And, limit foods containing saturated fat, added sugars and added salt. Replace unhealthy fats with small amounts of healthy fats such as olive oil, nuts and seeds, and avocado.
  3. Keep physically active. 
  4. Tune in to physical cues. Take notice of the taste, smell, texture of your food when eating. When you pay closer attention and eat mindfully, you allow yourself the chance to notice when you feel full, so you may stop once you’re comfortably full.

A Frugl Handy Tip

It’s okay if you want to lose weight. It might be a little – it might be a lot. You just have to remember that everybody has a different journey when it comes to weight loss. 

For instance, here at Frugl, we find that it’s the impulse food buying at the supermarket that sets us back. But that’s why online shopping comes in handy. You can sit at home, away from the temptation of on-sale unhealthy snacks, and buy only  what’s on your shopping list. 

Cutting back on impulse buying not only means a healthier grocery basket and a healthier you, but it also means you’re likely to save money by sticking to your shopping list too!

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