Put Regular Exercise on Your Schedule

January is Healthy Weight Awareness Month.

Jan. 18, 2024 2   min read

Instead of making a resolution to lose weight this year, make an intention to do something about it.

January is Healthy Weight Awareness Month and most of us are probably thinking the choice of selecting the first month of the new year for this campaign is undoubtedly intentional. While we may go into 2024 with the determination and grit to eat better and exercise more, we may want to rethink the reasoning behind that decision.

Treating our bodies well means we are also working at lowering cholesterol, improving blood pressure, reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, and having a better mental outlook. Being overweight and/or obese will increase the risk for diseases such as hypertension, high cholesterol, coronary heart disease, or osteoarthritis, which may subsequently lead to a poor quality of life.

Canton-Potsdam Hospital Family Medicine physician Benjamin Collard, MD, noted he hopes everyone enjoyed the holiday season, and are ready to make their health a priority in their own lives.

“People are allowed to have feelings about their bodies - both positive and negative. However, if the feelings are negative, individuals should use this as motivation to strive for a healthier lifestyle,” he said.

“For anyone who struggles with weight loss, I want you to know you are not alone. There are many options for weight loss including behavioral interventions (exercise, low calorie diet, and counseling), pharmacotherapy, and/or surgery. Our medical staff is prepared to help you through your journey,” Dr. Collard added.

In general, approximately 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week, with three days of aerobics and two days with a resistance-based activity, will assist in losing and maintaining a healthy weight.

“I do, however, recommend individuals meet with their family medicine provider before initiating any exercise regimen,” Dr. Collard said.

For women who have gone through menopause, weight gain is not limited to holidays and special occasions.

“Gaining weight after menopause may be concerning if it continues to progress or there is difficulty returning to one's ideal body weight. This is also something that should be discussed with your provider,” Dr. Collard noted.

NEXT STEPS Working Towards A Healthier You

Five days of exercise each week will assist you in losing and maintaining a healthy weight. 

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