A Healthy Mind Starts With a Healthy Body.
By Amber Doig
March 1, 2018
March is here, and many of us have already abandoned our annual New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier. You may not know it, but March is National Nutrition Month. This is an excellent news for those of us looking to give our diet a second shot.
How do you determine just how healthy you currently are? One way is by comparing your weight and height to determine your Body Mass Index, commonly referred to as BMI. Health professionals use this value as a measure of appropriate weight. A “healthy” value is considered to be between 18.5 and 24.9, “overweight” is considered 25.0 to 29.9, and 30 or higher qualifies as “obese.” As a basic frame of reference, a value of 30 would equate to 153 pounds for someone 5-feet tall and 221 pounds for a 6-foot tall individual. Charts showing the weights for each height can be found online.
Using these standards, 29% of adults in Arizona are considered obese. This figure was up from 26% in 2012, but luckily experts state that this value appears to be leveling out. Even if you’re not in the 30+ BMI camp, the fact is that nearly all of us could make some changes to our lifestyles to increase our health.
Sounds easy, but where do you start? Well, here are some basic tips:
• Be sure to eat breakfast and get enough sleep
• Park further from building entrances
• Switch out at least one sugary drink a day
• Make one day a week meat-free and use smaller plates
• Make small changes and celebrate the little wins
Medicare can help you fight obesity as well. For individuals with a BMI of 30 or more, Medicare covers behavioral therapy sessions geared to assist with weight loss. The service must be provided by a qualified primary care physician or other practitioners in a primary care setting. This counseling includes a dietary assessment, collaborative goal setting, and method to meet the goals set. When appropriate, medical treatments may be used. For more information, contact the Medicare helpline at 1-800-MEDICARE (1- 800-633-4227), TTY 1-877-486-2048.