On Economist Intelligence Unit’s “Tackling Obesity in Asean” report, which covered ASEAN countries such as Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam, it is noted that obesity and overweight have been steadily increasing in these ASEAN countries over the last three decades, not just in higher income countries but also in low- and middle-income nation.
In fact, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand are among the most overweight countries, with Vietnam the least obese in Southeast Asia.
Complications of obesity include high blood pressure which could lead to arteriosclerosis, when plaque builds up on the surface of blood vessels. This increases the risk of stroke or heart attack, kidney failure, liver damage and eye damage as well.
Exercise is an important part of any healthy lifestyle. For those who are overweight or obese, it is important to note that exercising will be a little different compared to other people. This is because for people who are overweight or obese, their joints need to carry more weight which could put more stress on them. This makes the risk of injury higher which is why it’s important to gradually increase the duration and intensity while building cardiovascular endurance.
This is an easy but helpful exercise which anyone can do. All that’s needed are a good pair of shoes that can help absorb your body weight. Start slow by walking two to five minutes per day. Afterwards, start adding an extra two minutes every third day until you reach a workout time of 30 minutes. Walk slowly as this lowers the risk of arthritis and injuries.
This is a great low impact exercise that will take the load off your joints while allowing you to successfully burn calories. Because this is done while seated, this makes it easier on your back and joints. Just like walking, start with just five minutes of peddling and gradually increase the time and intensity of the workout.
The water in the pool reduces the amount of pressure on an overweight or obese person’s joints by almost 90 percent. Walking, swimming and water aerobics classes are among the different activities to try. Warm up during the first five minutes and gradually wind your exercise intensity down during the last five minutes to safely return your body to normal resting level.
Strength training is a form of exercise that builds lean muscle whereby an increase in the amount of lean muscle will increase your metabolic rate as well. This means that the more muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn throughout the day. Start with two strength training workouts per week and work through a full body routine. Use the weight training machines which will help alleviate the impact on your joints while allowing you to exercise.
It is very advisable to get help from a personal trainer who will be able to tailor your workout in order to best achieve your fitness goal. As with starting any new fitness regime, ensure that you have the advice of your medical provider so you’ll be able to lose weight safely. Getting advice from a dietitian can also help you on your way to losing more weight while nourishing your body.