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Tuesday, 07 July 2015 22:44

Diet or Exercise Revisited

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There seems to be a never-ending controversy over which is better for weight loss, dieting or exercise? Some of the confusion comes from a lack of understanding about what diet and exercise do for our bodies.

Medical science tells us that our body's weight comes down to a simple equation of calories taken in (by eating) minus calories burned (by activity or work). In the case of overweight and obesity, much of the blame can be put on fast food and sugary sodas that are of poor nutritional value. Eating habits play a large part; bad eating habits turn into bad eating practices that can be passed on to our kids.

The problem with exercise as a cure for overweight and obesity is that it simply doesn't work. Most people aren't going to bike for 2 1/2 hours a week just so they can enjoy an extra frappucino.

When we think of exercise we really think of fitness. Muscle and cardio development are an important part of overall health but they are not a practical cure for obesity that is based on unhealthy eating habits. In addition, many people who are overweight or obese feel embarrassed at the gym. (Doctors' advice to "eat less and exercise more" has been shown the least effective treatment for obesity.)

active 19413 640There is of course some crossover between weight loss and exercise. Overweight and obesity are often associated with a sedentary lifestyle. We sit at the office. We play video games. We lie on the couch and watch TV. Usually with a snack close at hand. We don't move around.

How active should we be? The U.S. government recommends 150 minutes per week of moderate activity. That's just a half hour a day, five days a week. But many of us are less active than that.

California Medical Weight Management's physician-supervised, three-step weight management system is a highly successful weight loss program. In step one, patients experience rapid weight loss under the supervision of a doctor, and may receive appetite suppressants. Steps two and three are a gradual transition period which includes nutrition education and long-term behavior modification.

Our program includes both accountability and long-term support, two important factors in weight loss success. Those in the program credit education as the most important factor in their weight loss success.

To learn more, visit

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