Learning to Eat Well, Love Better, Move More

Before and after

By Bill Mietelski

When I arrived at Rush two years ago, I was a cheeseburger away from weighing 300 pounds.

I still remember the Sunday morning I got on my scale and it mocked me with three numbers: 2-9-9. I actually got on and off several times thinking the scale must be broken. Losing weight was always something I’d do “next week”. Suddenly next week was here; I had no desire to join the 300 club.

I always thought I could change things myself — after all, living a healthier lifestyle was simple, right? — so I never gave a second thought to any other way. Over the next few months I actually lost 25 pounds, but (stop me if you’ve heard this one before) the weight crept back, and 10 of those pounds returned like a bad penny.

The thing that finally got me on track was taking (for me) a real leap of faith: I let someone help me.

When Jennifer Ventrelle of the Rush University Prevention Center announced the first iteration of ELMS last summer, I was ready to take that leap. Using lessons learned from the original ELM research study, employees now had the opportunity to make positive lifestyle changes through nutrition, exercise and stress management. Sweet!

Continue reading

Weight Management: Make Your Body Work For You

By Kristin Gustashaw

Many people are forever in search of the magic pill to help them to lose weight. There are now even formulas that claim to reduce the amount of food you eat by simply sprinkling a substance on it. But if you were eating an unhealthy diet before trying something like this, you will still be eating unhealthy foods.

Losing weight is only one factor in the complex web that makes a body fit. In fact, losing the wrong type of weight can actually be harmful to your health. Quick weight loss diets often result in pounds shed but have more muscle lost than fat. Muscle burns more calories than fat, so when you lose muscle, you lower your metabolic rate (the rate at which your body burns calories), strength and stability. Extra body fat is linked to a lot of health problems including heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis (poor bone health), diabetes, arthritis and some forms of cancer. Continue reading