Disease Proof

Dieting and Aging

What do you think? Should you try dieting after a certain age? Think about it. If you’re older, why bother? You’re not long for this world anyway. Man—that’s some lousy thinking! Isn’t it? And scientifically stupid too, check out this report in HealthDay News to see why:
Older, overweight women who diet do not experience reduced physical function and should feel free to try to lose weight by reducing their calorie intake, U.S. research shows.

"Our results suggest that losing weight through calorie cutting won't lead to increased disability in older women," lead researcher Dr. Jamehl Demons of Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, said in a prepared statement.

When older, overweight women diet they may often gain back some of the weight. But they are still better off than before, noted Dr. Mary F. Lyles, also at Wake Forest and the lead investigator of a second project that examined how dieting affects body composition.
This story really struck me because a few members of my own family have pretty much given up on enjoying a healthy long-lived existence. Why? I don’t know. And I probably never will. Maybe this excerpt from Eat to Live will shed some light on this type of apathy:
Why should you wait until you are faced with a life-threatening health crisis to want health excellence? Most people would choose to disease-proof their body and look great now. They just never thought they could do it so easily. Picture yourself in phenomenal health and in excellent physical condition at your ideal body weight. Not only will your waist be free of fat but your heart will be free of plaque.

Still, it is not easy to change: eating has emotional and social overtones. It is especially difficult to break an addiction. Our American diet style is addicting, as you will lean, but not as addictive as smoking cigarettes. Stopping smoking is very hard, but many still succeed. I have heard many excuses over the years, from smokers aiming to quit and sometimes even from failed dieters. Making any change is not easy. Obviously, most people know if they change their diet enough and exercise, they can lose weight—but they still can’t do it.
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