Controlling your weight

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:47 pm
Controlling your weight will help you look good, but more importantly, it will help you feel good. Being overweight puts a strain on your heart, as well as the joints and ligaments that must support the extra weight. Because many overweight people eat foods that aren't good for them, it often leads to other diseases as well. The high rate of childhood obesity is rising because of a combination of poor diet and lack of exercise, and they're getting chronic diseases earlier as a result. Sadly, while it seems most Americans have been or are on a diet, according to the National Institutes of Health, many weight-loss regimens not only don't work, they can do you more harm than good. Only three percent of those who take off weight keep it off for at least five years. In addition, diets that deprive you of food often are so discouraging that you may wind up eating even more unhealthful foods as a result. Conventional diets that restrict calories may make you feel hungry and cause your metabolism to slow down. Other diets, such as those that urge you to increase your consumption of meats and eggs and reduce dietary carbohydrates (car-buh-HIGH-druts), actually can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and many otherhealth problems. Controlling your weight takes a combination of eating less and exercising more. In general, eat foods that are low in fat, high in complex carbohydrates, and high in fiber.

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