Weight Loss Tips during COVID-19Posted: Jun 19 in Weight loss, Weight Management Strategies by Dr. Lazarus
A recent study shows that people with obesity have had many health challenges by the COVID-19 pandemic, including increased anxiety and depression (73% / 84%), difficulty in achieving weight loss goals (70%), decreased exercise time and intensity (48% / 56%), increased stockpiling of food (50%) and stress eating (61%).
Does any of this sound familiar to you? Most people I’ve treated in the past 3 months report at least one of the above, if not all of them. Unfortunately, when we feel like the sky is falling, we don’t reach for a salad. There’s a reason comfort food is called comfort food!
So, I’d like to share a few things I’ve learned from my patients during this COVID-19 epidemic as it relates to achieving weight loss goals.
- Not gaining is a victory! With so much added stress and environmental change, holding your weight steady through this is a victory!
- Don’t underestimate the importance of sleep. As always, inadequate or irregular sleep patterns make weight loss extremely difficult for a variety of biological reasons. Changes in hormones produced by fat can lead to increased hunger (leptin suppresses appetite – fat tissue makes leptin while you sleep) and carbohydrate cravings (adiponectin is an insulin sensitizer – fat tissue makes adiponectin while you sleep too), not to mention that fatigue is every dieter’s worst enemy!
- Decrease stress. Make sure that there is a separation between your work life and your home life. Don’t allow your job to take over your home and personal life. Have 1 place in the house where you work. Limit your hours to normal working hours. If possible, just do the audio part of some teleconferences – many report being on camera for hours at a time is exhausting. And most importantly, find something FUN to do every day! Reading, art, music, walking, etc. One of the best ways to lower stress is to do something enjoyable!
These three tips can help you maintain a positive attitude through these challenging times. And we all know a positive attitude is critical to sustained weight loss success.