Mission: Healthy Body Weight

a Mallorca Physiotherapy blog article

Type “weight loss” into Google and you’ll get well over 1,000,000 hits in less than a second… I just did it!

It’s a huge subject that always seems to be at the forefront of our society. We’re a little bit obsessed with it actually, and not always in a particularly healthy way…

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word ‘diet’? Low fat? Low carb? Cabbage soup?

The word ‘diet’ simply refers to the “kinds of food that a person, animal or community habitually eats” 

So why do we automatically think of fasting or eating nothing but greens? We have been socially programmed to think of the word ‘diet’ in a completely different way…

I want to talk about the importance of maintaining a HEALTHY weight…healthy for YOU! This means something different for everybody and will depend on your shape, your lifestyle, your genes…etc.

Let’s take a look at the Body Mass Index (BMI) measurement for example:

Your weight in kilograms divided by your height in m²   (kg/m²)

Although it gives us a general idea of our proportion, it does not differentiate between fat and muscle which can give a misleading result.

For instance, both of these men are 6ft tall and weigh 113kgs… according to the BMI calculator they are both OBESE

Would you agree?

So, while the BMI calculator is a good guide, it should be used with caution as a health indicator.

A more accurate measure is the waist to height ratio:

Your waist in cms divided by your height in cms    (waist/height)

 This would provide a very different result for the two men above!

So, get your tape measure out and see where you currently sit on the waist to height (WHtR) chart (right-click to enlarge in new tab):

Does your score look healthy? More importantly, do you FEEL healthy?

Yes? Great stuff! Keep doing what you’re doing to maintain a healthy, proportional body weight!

No? Do you feel that your weight is impacting on your overall health and wellbeing? Read on…

The Cambridge Weight Plan (CWP) was developed in…any guesses? Yep, the University of Cambridge in the 1960’s by a nutritionist named Alan Howard. It was launched in the UK in 1984, so it’s nothing new…it’s a simple low calorie meal replacement plan, that works!

In March this year, I was asked to become a Consultant for the CWP here in Mallorca. At first I wasn’t interested as I thought it was just another fad diet plan doing the rounds. But when Head Office sent me the latest research being undertaken within the NHS I thought I’d give it a chance! Having worked as a Junior & Senior Physiotherapist in the NHS, I know how strict the research protocols are and if trials are being undertaken within the service they have already been rigorously tested for their safety and effectiveness. This was a good start, I thought!

The research makes for interesting reading here

  • 7.2kg more weight loss when compared with usual weight loss programmes offered in Primary Care
  • 6cm difference in waist measurement when compared to usual weight loss programmes
  • 10% weight loss and 7% weight maintenance (1 year evidence) in secondary heart disease prevention with increased insulin sensitivity and less atherogenic blood lipids
  • Average 10% weight loss and maintenance (4 year evidence) in Osteoarthritis with maintained symptom benefit, improved Vitamin D status and maintained bone health

I was really happy to read that unlike many weight loss programmes, there is only very minimal muscle loss when following the CWP. If you read my previous post on ‘Muscle Loss’ (if not, why not?!), you’ll know why this is so important!

So, this really made my mind up that the CWP is a safe, effective weight loss program and could really benefit my patients suffering from joint pain, low back pain, etc.

Since my training in April this year, I have had 12 people start the plan. Each with very different goals and motivations but with my help and support each of them are working towards their own individual healthy weight, with some already at the maintenance stage.

Because it’s not just finding your healthy weight and achieving it, it’s about maintaining that healthy weight while you go about enjoying your life! The CWP helps you to make better food choices and develop better food habits which will set you up for healthy weight maintenance in the future. No more yo-yo-ing!

So if this sounds like something you need to/want to address right now… get in touch and I’ll be happy to tell you all about how it works.

Thanks for reading, until next time…

Lauren Rigg

Mallorca Physiotherapy

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