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The Change In Me

Updated on July 6, 2012

making important changes

The Change In Me

The change I plan to make in my life, AKA, my behavior modification is to reverse my status of obesity. I know and have seen and know many people larger than I am, but by any standard BMI test I score in the obese range. Quite frankly, I am tired of being that way. This class, along with tons of reading and research on my own, have educated me in many ways to know how to better change my life in a more positive and rewarding way.

According to an article on Beachbody’s website, the ACS has done a study that proved without any doubt that a sedentary lifestyle will increase the chance of death. Basically, sitting still can kill you! “The bad news is that sitting too much can actually kill you, much quicker than if you don't. The American Cancer Society tracked the health of 123,000 Americans for over 10 years. Men who spent 6 hours or more per day sitting had an overall death rate that was about 20 percent higher than the men who sat for 3 hours or less. The death rate for women who sat for more than 6 hours a day was about 40 percent higher. According to research at the Mayo Clinic, entropy takes hold when you spend too much time sedentary. Your body rebels and begins to do bad things to you—specifically, not only do you begin to get fat but your body also begins to store that fat around your middle, which is correlated with heart disease. In addition to giving you a big spare tire, sitting too much is linked to increased risks of cancer, Type 2 diabetes, and a host of other bad things, including hemorrhoids.” (Rice) So the first thing is getting active. I have ordered several of Beachbody’s top workout programs, and completed my first one, and am on week two of my next program. I stared taking my daughter to Zumba classes at our gym, and now have began the Couch to 5k training program for beginning runners.

Another important factor in regard to getting out of the obese score is the impact that obesity now has on healthcare costs. Many insurance agencies are charging higher premiums for overweight employees much the same as they have with smokers for many years. A recent article on the Stone Hearth News website, discussed a study of present and former employees of the Mayo Clinic and the findings showed a direct correlation to obesity and higher costs for health care. “Both obesity and smoking were associated with excess costs for health care. Compared to nonsmokers, average health costs were $1,275 higher for smokers. The incremental costs associated with obesity were even higher: $1,850 more than for normal-weight individuals. For those with morbid obesity, the excess costs were up to $5,500 per year. Smoking and obesity place a growing strain on an already stretched healthcare system. Employers are evaluating wellness programs—such as quit-smoking and fitness programs—in an attempt to lower costs by reducing health risk factors.” (Stone) My health goals deal with this issue as I am currently on medications due to weight related issues, and my desire is to eventually be able to stop taking the medication.

Ultimately, the biggest factor for changing my life by modifying my obesity is the risk of disease that is directly related to being overweight. Already being on medication for arrhythmia and hypertension, I am more aware of the risks that these issues can involve into. Working in emergency care, I see all too often, how serious heart disease, stroke, and diabetes can be. I have to get control of my health, before it controls me. According to the CDC, the more overweight one is, the higher the risk. “Research has shown that as weight increases to reach the levels referred to as "overweight" and "obesity,"* the risks for the following conditions also increases:1

· Coronary heart disease

· Type 2 diabetes

· Cancers (endometrial, breast, and colon)

· Hypertension (high blood pressure)

· Dyslipidemia (for example, high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides)

· Stroke

· Liver and Gallbladder disease

· Sleep apnea and respiratory problems

· Osteoarthritis (a degeneration of cartilage and its underlying bone within a joint)

· Gynecological problems (abnormal menses, infertility)” (CDC)

I didn’t really mention a specific “behavior” to modify. But there are many factors to obesity, the biggest of which is mindset, and I will train and educate myself to make better decisions about nutrition. I will push myself to work out even on days that I don’t think I want to. I will continue to work toward my goal of getting off HTN medication. And I WILL succeed and become healthy and fit, and be able to perform my job as an EMT/Firefighter efficiently and effectively.


Works Cited

CDC. “Health Consequences.” Overweight and Obesity. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. March 3, 2011. http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/causes/health.htm

Rice, Andrew. “Don’t Take This News Sitting Down: Your Desk Is Killing You.” TeamBeachbody.com. Newsletter. March 202. http://www.teambeachbody.com/about/newsletters.

Stone Hearth News. “Obesity drives healthcare costs more than smoking: new study.” Health, Medical, and Science Updates. Stonehearthnews.com. April 4, 2012. http://stonehearthnews.com/obesity

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