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How Does Weight Gain Affect My Health?

Posted Friday 10 July 2020 15:46 by in Weight loss by Harman Bhamra

Being overweight or obese can bring a lot of problems to the table; from mental health issues related to low confidence right through to serious health problems that can be life-threatening.

It’s extremely important to understand how weight gain will affect your health in order to ensure that you keep up with a healthy lifestyle. Within this guide, we will be taking you through the relationship between health problems and weight gain. We will also explore plans of action for achieving a healthier, happier weight.

The Relationship Between Health Problems and Weight Gain

Unfortunately, being overweight or obese can cause several health problems. While results are likely to vary between individuals, the following health problems are known to be the most common and severe.

Type 2 Diabetes: Type 2 diabetes is diagnosed when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal. Some people suffer from type 2 diabetes as a result of hereditary, but for many people, it occurs as a result of excessive weight around the waist and an unhealthy lifestyle. To put this into perspective, over 85% of adults with diabetes are overweight or obese.

Through losing weight, you are at a better chance of delaying or preventing diabetes altogether. You will gain back control of your body, keeping blood sugar levels at a healthy point and eliminating the risk of a fatal incident from happening.

Cancer: Perhaps one of the scariest parts about weight gain is developing a higher risk rate of getting cancer. It has been found that those who are overweight are more likely to develop breast, colon, gallbladder and kidney cancer in particular. While it is still uncertain as to what exactly encourages the growth of cancer cells, many experts believe that it's due to too many fat cells releasing hormones and affecting cell growth.

High Blood Pressure: High blood pressure occurs when the blood pumping through your arteries pushes too hard against the artery walls. As your body is larger when overweight, your heart needs to work harder to pump blood around, resulting in added pressure.

In a worst-case scenario, high blood pressure can result in heart disease or kidney failure. You may even suffer from a stroke. This is why it is all the more important to maintain - or achieve - a healthy weight to ensure that your heart is never overworking.

One of the easiest ways to reduce blood pressure levels is by monitoring your diet. Cutting out salty foods in conjunction with exercising frequently will be sure to contribute positively.

Heart Disease: Heart disease is an umbrella term for a whole range of issues that can affect your heart. Having high blood pressure and high cholesterol (which are both health issues encouraged by weight gain) can lead to heart disease. If untreated, heart disease can result in a heart attack, heart failure, cardiac arrest and so on. Losing weight will help your body to pump blood more easily, preventing such a disease from occurring.

Fatty Liver Disease: If you can’t tell by the name, fatty liver disease is a problem that occurs when too much fat builds up inside the liver. This type of issue can result in severe liver damage or liver failure. Everyone who is diagnosed with fatty liver disease is encouraged to reduce their body weight in an attempt to lower the quantity of fat in the liver.

What Causes Weight Gain?

So - what causes weight gain? Each body is different, and while some people can eat for England without putting on weight, others have a hard time maintaining a healthy BMI. The main causes of weight gain include:

  • Genetics - this usually determines how easily you gain/maintain weight
  • Medication - some medications (eg: antidepressants) have a side effect of weight gain
  • Poor diet - overeating on fatty and sugary foods
  • Alcohol
  • Misinformation - a lack of understanding surrounding nutritious diets

How To Find Out If You Are Overweight

One of the easiest ways to establish whether you are overweight or not is by measuring your BMI. Your body mass index (BMI) is worked out by taking some basic information about height, weight and age. From here, your BMI is placed onto a chart to establish whether you are underweight, at a healthy weight, overweight or obese. These guidelines are as follows:

  • Healthy weight: BMI ranging from 18.5 to 24.9
  • Overweight: BMI ranging from 25 to 29.9
  • Obese: BMI of 30 and above

You can use a BMI calculator to find out more.

How To Lose Weight: Minimising The Risk Of Developing Health Problems

If you are classified as obese or overweight, it is advised to lose around 5% of your weight to lower your risk of developing health problems.

To lose weight healthily, it is advised to lose around 1-2lbs per week. This can be achieved through a combination of techniques, revolving around:

Eating Healthily: Through eating regular meals, plenty of fruit and vegetables and cutting back on snacking, you’re at a higher chance of experiencing weight loss. Resist junk food and replace it with high fibre alternatives, instead. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water too!

Exercising: Alongside eating healthily, exercising regularly is a huge contributor to healthy weight loss. It is advised to complete around 150 minutes of moderate activity per week to promote weight loss.

Taking Supplements: If you are eating healthily and exercising regularly yet still struggling to shed the pounds, your doctor may recommend weight loss pills. These pills are used alongside the above methods to speed up weight loss and get you back to a healthy weight. However, to ensure that you aren’t harming your body, never take weight loss pills that aren’t supplied by an accredited doctor or pharmacy.


How Does Xenical Help With Weight Loss?

Posted Friday 19 June 2020 12:30 by in Weight loss by Harman Bhamra

How does Xenical help with weight loss? Is it effective? Is it safe? This blog post will answer all the questions you have about Xenical.

What Is Xenical?

Google “weight loss” and you’ll probably see millions of pages dedicated to it. Some resources will teach you fasting techniques, some introduce a new diet, others focus on weight loss exercises, etc. Some may even entice you towards ‘magic weight loss pills’ that do all the work for you.

Xenical (Orlistat) is an over-the-counter tablet that’s designed to help you drop some weight. It is the only drug that’s been proven safe in clinical trials. Along with a balanced diet and proper exercise, Xenical can help you lose weight over time. And no - it’s not a magic pill that you can take and then shed off a few pounds overnight (they don’t exist!). You will still need to watch what you are eating and follow an exercise regime.

How Does Xenical Help You Lose Weight?

Xenical works in your gut. It stops the fat from the food you eat from being absorbed by your body and gets rid of it through your stool. With that said, Xenical is only effective when you take it with the meal plan and exercise program designed by your doctor or nutritionist.

Who Is Xenical For?

Xenical is a weight loss pill that makes it hard for your body to absorb fat. Doctors often use BMI to decide whether you can take weight loss pills or not. Xenical is prescribed to those with a BMI of 27 and above or when you have weight-related illnesses like high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.

Remember that Xenical is not meant to replace a healthy diet and exercise. Rather, it’s a supplement to help you lose weight healthily and effectively.

How Effective Is Xenical?

According to clinical trials, Xenical is more effective in helping you lose weight compared to lifestyle changes alone. Consider this one study from Shire Health International:

The one year study, involving 539 adolescents aged 12 to 16, evaluated the efficacy and safety of Xenical in conjunction with lifestyle changes (a mildly reduced-calorie diet, exercise and behavioural therapy) compared to the efficacy of lifestyle changes alone.

Study results showed that adolescents treated with Xenical had:

  • significantly greater reduction in fat mass (-2.4 kg vs. -0.38kg) (p=0.033).
  • significantly reduced BMI compared with adolescents receiving lifestyle changes alone (-0.67 kg/m2 vs. +0.17 kg/m2) (p=0.001)

In addition:

  • a greater proportion of Xenical treated adolescents achieved a =5% and =10% decrease in BMI (27% vs. 16% and 13.3% vs. 4.5% respectively)
  • Xenical was well tolerated and reported adverse events were similar to those seen in adults.

How Long Does It Take For Xenical To Start Working?

Xenical will start working its wonders after your first dose. But the results will not come overnight. You will start seeing changes within two weeks as long as you follow your meal plan and regular exercise program. Weight loss becomes significant within the first 6 months of using Xenical.

Is Xenical Dangerous?

According to experts, “Xenical has a long-term safety profile unmatched in the field of weight loss”. This weight loss medicine is well-tolerated by the body so your safety is not an issue. However, like all medicines, it does come with some side effects.

Most of the common side effects of Xenical are caused by the retention of oil and fats in your gut. These are normal and temporary. In fact, they are signs that the medicine is working:

  • Oily spotting in your underwear
  • Fatty or oily stools
  • Brown or orange-coloured oil in your stool
  • Rectal pain
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Loose stools or frequent need to go to the bathroom
  • Gas

These side effects may lessen as your body gets used to Xenical.

Although rare, Xenical may also cause severe side effects. If you experience any of these, stop taking the weight loss pill and call your doctor immediately.

  • Liver problems (dark urine, clay-coloured stool, yellowing of the skin, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea)
  • Kidney problems (shortness of breath, tiredness, little to no urge of urinating, swelling in your ankles or feet)
  • Severe lower back pain
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Blood in urine or painful urination

To avoid these side effects, make sure that you follow instructions carefully. In case you missed a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is already more than 1 hour since your last meal, skip the missed dose and take your weight loss medicine at your next schedule. Never take an extra dose to make up for the missed one.

Can I Buy Xenical Over The Counter?

Xenical is a prescription medication. You buy Xenical tablets from Express Pharmacy after you complete a free consultation service. Your weight loss tablets will then be delivered right to your doorstep.


Obesity Awareness Week: What Causes Weight Gain and Obesity?

Posted Monday 13 January 2020 08:40 by in Weight loss by Harman Bhamra

Obesity is one of the most common health problems in the world and has been connected with numerous concerns, from high blood sugar to high blood pressure. Collectively, these related conditions are known as metabolic syndrome, and people with metabolic syndrome are more likely to develop heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Much research has been carried out over the last few decades into the causes of obesity and the different ways that it can be prevented and treated. In light of obesity awareness week, we are taking a look at what causes weight gain and obesity, and how you can overcome it.

What is the definition of obesity?

The definition of obesity refers to someone who is very overweight. Obesity is a common global problem, with one in four adults in the UK alone affected.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is the most widely used method to check if someone is overweight; it’s a measure of whether you’re at a healthy weight for your height. A BMI of between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered a healthy weight, while 25 to 29.9 means you’re overweight.

If you have a BMI of between 30 and 39.9, you will be classed as obese. And, if you score over 40, you are considered to be severely obese. However, while BMI is useful in indicating whether you’re at a healthy weight, it’s important to note that it doesn’t take into account other factors such as muscle percentage.

With this in mind, a better measure of excess fat is waist size – men who are obese generally have a waist size of 40 inches or more, while obese women have a waist of 35 inches or more.

What causes weight gain?

Many people believe that those who are overweight simply don’t have the willpower to get healthy, but that isn’t true in the majority of cases. In fact, what causes obesity can vary from genetics right through to medical problems.

The following pointers are the main causes of weight gain, which can lead to obesity:

Genetics

Genetics play a huge role in obesity and children of obese parents are much more likely to become obese themselves. That’s not to say that obesity is completely predetermined and out of your control, as diet and exercise can still influence your individual weight. But genetic components do affect how susceptible you are to gaining, and holding on to, weight.

Medication

Pharmaceutical drugs like antidepressants and diabetes medication cite weight gain as one of the side effects. These medications don’t impact your willpower, but they do affect the functioning of your brain, which reduces your metabolic rate and increases your appetite.

Food Addiction

Fatty foods stimulate reward centres in the brain, leading to an addictive sensation. In fact, these foods have been compared to drugs like cocaine, alcohol and nicotine in terms of how addictive they are.

Addiction is complex and difficult for many people to overcome, as it alters the chemistry of the brain, making it hard to stop. People who are addicted to food lose control of their eating habits and become more likely to gain weight as a result.

Sugar

The impact sugar has on our health is not new news. One of the ways it harms us is by changing the hormones and biochemistry in our bodies, altering insulin resistance and increasing the chance of gaining weight.

Misinformation

A lack of understanding about health and nutrition is largely to blame for the levels of obesity around the world. From inaccurate information online to magazines and newspapers; many sources quickly become misinterpreted or taken out of context. Food companies also play a role in this, as do diet brands.

What is the best way to lose weight?

The best way to lose weight is by combining a few different lifestyle changes. Firstly, assess your diet and take note of the types of food you are eating; could you switch to healthier alternatives? Make sure you eat three meals a day too - many people believe that skipping breakfast will be beneficial to weight loss, but the opposite is true, and it means you miss out on the necessary nutrients to kickstart your day.

Getting more active is also key to successful weight loss; start walking more when possible or join a fitness class at your local gym.

To give your weight loss journey an extra boost, you can even take effective weight loss pills. Xenical weight loss pills aim to reduce the amount of fat absorbed during digestion. They are an effective weight loss treatment when used alongside a balanced diet and exercise regime, improving your cholesterol, lowering blood pressure and reducing levels of insulin.

Conclusion

Obesity is a global epidemic that poses a significant concern for the health of millions of people. Your weight loss journey will require a lot of determination, but by combining weight loss pills, meal planning and exercise, you’ll begin to notice significant differences to your body image. You’ll even benefit from reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and other diseases.

Get in touch with our experts on 0208 123 0703 for more information regarding effective weight loss.

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There Are 10 Steps to Avoiding Festive Weight Gain, According to Research

Posted Wednesday 18 December 2019 11:55 by in Weight loss by Tim Deakin

The study by the Universities of Birmingham and Loughborough advises 10 golden rules

In the UK, obesity is an ongoing issue. The NHS reports that 29% of UK adults are classified as obese, a rise from 26% from 2016. What’s more, in the last year there have been 10,660 hospital admissions in the UK for which obesity was a directly attributable factor.[1]

However, despite being a concern all year round, it seems that weight gain is particularly prevalent during the festive season. One study concluded that weight gain occurs more frequently in November and December. They cited several reasons for this, including denser foods, bigger portions, social gatherings and less physical activity during the winter.[2]

But one study claims to have established the necessary steps to help prevent weight loss over the festive season. Let’s take a closer look at this research, as well as its findings.

The study

Researchers from the University of Birmingham and Loughborough University were supported by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) to carry out a ‘Winter Weight Watch Study’. This was designed as a trial to help participants avoid gaining weight over the festive season.

The study was published in the British Medical Journal, and was carried out in 2016 and 2017. 272 participants were split into two groups: an intervention group who were given tips on diet and exercise over Christmas, and a comparison group who weren’t.

The results show that, on average, participants in the comparison group gained weight over Christmas while those in the intervention group did not. In fact, by the end of the study the intervention group weighed an average of 0.49kg less than the comparison group.[3]

10 top tips for avoiding festive weight gain

As part of the study, the intervention group were provided with 10 top tips for avoiding weight gain. These were adapted from Lally et al’s 2008 tips, published in the International Journal of Obesity.[4]

These are the tips they were given:

1. Stick to your meal routine: Try to eat at roughly the same times every day.

2. Choose reduced fat: Choose low fat spreads, dressings and condiments.

3. Walk off the weight: Aim for 10,000 steps every day.

4. Pack a healthy snack: Choose fruit or low-calorie yoghurts as a snack.

5. Learn the labels: Check the fat and sugar on food labels while shopping.

6. Be cautious with portions: Think twice before second helpings.

7. Get on your feet: stand for at least 10 minutes every hour.

8. Think about your drinks: Check the sugar content of drinks and limit your alcohol intake.

9. Slow down while eating: Eat at the table and actively enjoy your food.

10. Don’t forget your 5 a day: Aim for five pieces of fruit and veg a day.

Controlling your weight over the festive season

Many of these tips revolve around one thing: moderation. By watching your diet and engaging in regular exercise throughout the festive season, you can avoid the regular trap of gaining weight over Christmas.

And this can lead to more benefits than just helping with weight loss. Bupa reports that exercise can help to stimulate muscles, bones and joints, keep organs healthy and improve symptoms of mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.[5]

Find safe and effective weight loss medication right here at Express Pharmacy. Speak to one of our pharmacists today by calling 0208 123 07 03 or by using our discreet online Live Chat service.

[1] NHS UK. Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet, England, 2019

[2] Díaz-Zavala, RG. et al. Effect of the Holiday Season on Weight Gain: A Narrative Review. Journal of Obesity. 2017

[3] Mason et al. Effectiveness of a brief behavioural intervention to prevent weight gain over the Christmas holiday period: randomised controlled trial. The British Medical Journal. 2018

[4] Lally, P. et al. Healthy habits: efficacy of simple advice on weight control based on a habit-formation model. International Journal of Obesity. 2008

[5] Bupa. Benefits of Exercise. 2019


How Is Your Morning Routine Impacting Your Health?

Posted Friday 20 September 2019 14:01 by in Weight loss by Tim Deakin

healthy living

A morning routine can be beneficial to your overall health and productivity. Establishing a positive routine can help to alleviate stress, improve sleep quality, improve your diet, encourage fitness and help you utilise your time better.[1]

What’s more, finding your ideal morning routine can positively impact your attitude, energy levels and performance throughout the day, helping to reduce your chances of feeling depleted later in the morning or afternoon.[2]

So how does your morning routine measure up? We’re taking a look at some of the key components of a healthy morning — breakfast, natural light and fitness — to see just how important they really are.

Breakfast

Breakfast is often referred to as the most important meal of the day because it breaks the overnight fasting period, replenishes your glucose supply and provides many other essential nutrients to provide you with energy throughout the day. Eating a high-fibre breakfast reduced fatigue, while skipping breakfast can reduce mental performance during the day.[3]

But despite this, research continually shows that many people go without breakfast in the UK. One study conducted by the British Nutrition Foundation found that 14% of teachers and almost a quarter of secondary school students (24%) did not eat breakfast before attending school.[4]

According to many experts, healthy breakfast can also reduce your risk of experiencing conditions like acid reflux. And they advise that you always make time for a balanced breakfast of fibre, fruit and protein to give you a good base of energy for the day ahead.

However, it is worth bearing in mind that there is a growing belief that skipping breakfast has its own benefits. In particular, fans of intermittent fasting and time-restricted eating believe that there are many benefits to restricting eating hours to just an 8 hour window, suggesting that breakfast may not be all that crucial after all. There is some evidence to suggest that time restricted eating has benefits in relation to weight management, digestion and even immune function.

Sunlight

Natural light exposure is one of the key elements for maintaining your overall health. Sunlight has been shown to boost productivity, promote energy, increase your vitamin D storage and even improve your mood.[5]

In the morning, letting the light into your home can help you feel more awake more swiftly, standing you in good stead for the day ahead. In the long term, bright natural light exposure in the morning has even been shown to be effective against insomnia, premenstrual syndrome and seasonal affective disorder.[6]

Sunlight and fresh air are also often advised in cases of migraines and headaches. So try to get up and out in the light early when you wake up.

Exercise

There are numerous benefits to a regular fitness regime. Exercise helps to stimulate the development of bones, joints and muscles. It improves heart and lung health, helps you maintain a healthy weight and can even tackle symptoms of mental health disorders like anxiety and depression.[7]

Completing an exercise routine in the morning is an effective way of reducing stress and lowering blood pressure, according to a 2011 study by Appalachian State University.[8] Similarly, researchers at the University of Bristol found that exercising in the morning gives you more energy and a more positive outlook.[9]

Incorporating a fitness regime into your morning routine, even if it’s only 10 or 20 minutes long, can help to lift your mood and help you with weight management.

Find safe and effective treatments for a variety of conditions right here at Express Pharmacy. Explore our site today or get in touch with one of our pharmacists by calling 0208 123 07 03. You can also contact us via our discreet online live chat service.

[1] Northwestern Medicine. Health Benefits of Having a Routine. 2019

[2] Harvard Extension School Professional Development. 3 ways to boost productivity with a morning routine. 2019

[3] Better Health. Breakfast. 2012

[4] British Nutrition Foundation. A quarter of UK secondary school children have no breakfast. 2015

[5] Davies, C. Shining light on what natural light does for your body. NC State University. 2014

[6] Mead, MN. Benefits of Sunlight: A Bright Spot for Human Health. Environmental Health Perspectives. 2008

[7] Raby, A. PhD. Benefits of Exercise. BUPA. 2019

[8] Appalachian State University. Early morning exercise is the best for reducing blood pressure and reducing sleep. 2011

[9] Harvard Extension School Professional Development. 3 ways to boost productivity with a morning routine. 2019

Tags: Weight Loss