More than 70 percent of U.S. adults are overweight or obese.
There are many factors that contribute to a person's weight including environment, family history, genetics, metabolism, and behavior or habits. Reaching and maintaining a healthy weight is important for overall health and can help you prevent and control many diseases and conditions. If you are overweight or obese, you are at higher risk of developing serious health problems including heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, breathing problems, and certain cancers. Maintaining a healthy weight can help you lower your risk for developing these problems and help you feel good about yourself.
A calorie is a unit of energy and most foods and beverages contain calories. To lose weight you need to eat and drink fewer calories, increase physical activity, and combine the two for the best results. The calories you do not use are stored as carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and dietary body fats. This is true whether these calories come from fibers, vitamins, and minerals.
When you take in more calories than you use, you gain weight.
You can reach and maintain a healthy weight if you:
- Follow a healthy diet, and if you are overweight or obese, reduce your daily intake by 500 calories for weight loss
- Are physically active
- Limit the time you spend being physically inactive
Changing the way you approach weight loss can help you be more successful at weight management. Most people who are trying to lose weight focus on just the goal of weight loss. However, setting the right goals and focusing on lifestyle changes such as following a healthy eating plan, watching portion sizes, being physically active, and reducing sedentary time are much more effective.