Aid­ing weight loss

Matamata Chronicle - - Farming - By KA­T­RINA TANIRAU mata­mata.ed­i­

Theresa Row­ley had reached a point where she could no longer carry around the ex­cess weight she had steadily gained over a num­ber of years. ‘‘I was tired and just over it re­ally,’’ she said. ‘‘I knew I had to do some­thing about it.’’ She jumped on her bike and rode to Pohlen Hos­pi­tal to use the award-win­ning out­door re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and ex­er­cise fa­cil­ity, and she has not looked back. ‘‘You have to do it for your­self,’’ she said. ‘‘If you don’t do it for the right rea­sons it sim­ply won’t work.’’

Most of the out­door ex­er­cise equip­ment is re­sis­tance-based so that as the ki­los started to drop off, the ex­er­cise be­came eas­ier.

‘‘As it gets eas­ier you be­gin to won­der whether it’s still work­ing but I was see­ing the re­sults so I knew it was.’’

With a healthier diet and smaller por­tion sizes, Theresa is well on her way to achiev­ing her goal weight.

‘‘I’m proud of what I’ve achieved so far,’’ she said. ‘‘It gives me the mo­ti­va­tion to keep go­ing.’’

Sport Waikato Ac­tive and Well co-or­di­na­tor Tui Pri­est said she ad­mired the ini­tia­tive Theresa had shown by fronting up and work­ing out.

Ms Pri­est is avail­able to work with new­com­ers and help keep regulars on track on Wed­nes­day be­tween 10am and 12.30pm.

This ser­vice is free thanks to com­mu­nity grants from COGS and the Grass­roots Trust.

Call Ms Pri­est on 027 270 8867 for more in­for­ma­tion.

About 50 to 80 per cent of the hu­man body con­sists of wa­ter, with the av­er­age adult male body con­tain­ing about 40 litres. Wa­ter is found through­out all body tis­sues – body cav­i­ties, blood ves­sels, cells and or­gans – and of the hu­man brain is made up of wa­ter.

Wa­ter is nec­es­sary for all the chem­i­cal re­ac­tions that oc­cur in our bod­ies. It lubri­cates our joints, reg­u­lates body tem­per­a­ture, trans­ports dis­solved mol­e­cules and is re­spon­si­ble for elim­i­nat­ing po­ten­tially poi­sonous waste prod­ucts.

How much wa­ter do we need?

The di­ges­tive sys­tem uses about 12 litres of wa­ter ev­ery day to process food. Even with­out ex­er­cis­ing we lose two to three litres a day through breath­ing, per­spi­ra­tion, urine and fae­ces. How­ever, we do con­serve wa­ter by re­ab­sorb­ing it from the bowel when we need to.

For the body to keep func­tion­ing nor­mally, it needs a steady sup­ply of wa­ter from daily in­take of food and drink.

The New Zealand Food and Nu­tri­tion Guide­lines rec­om­mend about 3 litres of wa­ter (from all sources) is re­quired per day for men and about 2.2 litres for women.

Solid food (es­pe­cially veg­eta­bles and fruits) con­trib­utes about 1 litre of that, with about 0.3 litres com­ing from the wa­ter pro­duced by the break­down of food.

The rest of the wa­ter needs to come from flu­ids such as wa­ter, milk, tea, cof­fee and other bev­er­ages. (1.7 litres for men, 0.9 litres for women).

As a gen­eral rule for good health take an amount of fluid that re­quires you to uri­nate four to five times a day. Know­ing this you can re­lax a lit­tle over the pres­sure to con­sume eight glasses of wa­ter (2 litres) ev­ery day.

Is thirst a re­li­able in­di­ca­tor of a need to drink?

The body has a very clever way of telling us when we are low on wa­ter – we get thirsty! Loss of wa­ter makes body flu­ids more con­cen­trated (thicker) and this sends sig­nals to the brain to make us feel thirst, and to our kid­neys to con­serve wa­ter. Thirst ap­pears when there is just a 2 per cent rise in the thick­ness of blood, whereas de­hy­dra­tion is de­fined as a 5 per cent rise. So the ma­jor­ity of healthy peo­ple can rely on thirst with­out risk of se­ri­ous de­hy­dra­tion.

How­ever, there are ex­cep­tions to this. Some­times in old age, and in young peo­ple, thirst is not such a re­li­able in­di­ca­tor. The el­derly and young should drink fre­quently, even if they are not thirsty. And, when par­tic­i­pat­ing in vig­or­ous sport, thirst is usu­ally an in­di­ca­tion that you are al­ready de­hy­drated.

It is im­por­tant not to ig­nore your thirst, even if it is only mild.

Wa­ter and ex­er­cise

If you ex­er­cise vig­or­ously you should drink a glass of wa­ter be­fore start­ing and then have half a glass ev­ery 15 min­utes. This will pre­vent de­hy­dra­tion and im­prove per­for­mance.

Trans­for­ma­tion: Theresa Row­ley, with the guid­ance of Sport Waikato Ac­tive and Well co-or­di­na­tor Tui Pri­est, has been us­ing the out­door re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and ex­er­cise fa­cil­ity at Pohlen Hos­pi­tal to help her lose weight.

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