IT has become very clear that this awful coronavirus is far deadlier to those who are overweight.
While most people who catch Covid-19 will get better — albeit after several weeks of feeling battered, bruised and as weak as a newborn kitten — the cold, hard fact is that an infected person who is obese is twice as likely to need hospital treatment and therefore far more likely to die.
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Unlike with other life-threatening conditions, those who are overweight can do something to help themselves.
Look at superstar Adele.
She has gradually lost around seven stone and is now far healthier, fitter and thankfully no longer in the at-risk group when it comes to Covid-19.
Adele was a beautiful-looking woman before her dramatic weight loss and she’s still utterly gorgeous.
But she’s now less likely to succumb to all sorts of serious illnesses — and that’s what losing weight should be about.
For those who cry “fat shaming”, you are missing the point.
Managing to shed large amounts of excess weight can protect you from conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer and lethal viruses such as Covid-19.
I’m not talking about carrying a few surplus pounds on your bum or your belly.
Overeating and not exercising is serious and will be slowly killing you.
We also know this isn’t to do with being greedy. We have complicated relationships with food.
Some people comfort-eat and use food as an emotional prop.
At the other end of the scale, we have distressing disorders such as bulimia and anorexia, with men and women using food to try to have some control over their lives.
Those who are overweight are told to eat less and move around more — as if they didn’t know that already.
It sounds so very simple, but I know from personal experience how hard that can be.
But if your very survival is at stake, then it’s time to knuckle down.
SURVIVAL AT STAKE
This isn’t about going on a stupid faddy diet. They make you miserable, resentful and obsessed with food.
And you inevitably end up even fatter than you were before you started punishing yourself with calorie counting and hopping on and off the scales three times a day.
It’s all about a lifestyle change and doing exercise you enjoy.
My advice, which is hard-earned over the years, is not to have too much unhealthy food in the house, especially right now in lockdown when it’s so easy to sit watching TV while guzzling whole packets of biscuits.
If you don’t buy the junk, you won’t be able to gorge on it.
That’s not to say you can’t have a treat. You can.
Just don’t eat a whole plus-sized bag of Maltesers or only leave a few Hobnobs in the biscuit tin.
CHANGE YOUR MINDSET
Also, don’t call physical activity “exercise”, as that sounds like a slog and a chore.
Instead, tell yourself it’s going for a lovely walk or doing a fun Zumba, dance, yoga or Pilates class online.
If you are seriously overweight, you have to change your mindset, your attitude and your lifestyle.
Don’t put it off.
You owe it to yourself, everyone you love and to our beleaguered NHS to get yourself fit and well.
It’s not going to be easy, but you will not only feel better physically, but mentally too.
I wish you luck.
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