We all want to be healthy and look our best, but how can you know if you’re at a healthy weight? Everyone’s body is unique, so determining a “one size fits all” healthy weight can be challenging. The truth is, there isn’t one ideal weight for every person, and what may be an ideal weight for one person might not be the same for another. Age, height, and body type influence the ideal weight for each individual. People make healthier decisions when they feel their best and reach a place where their overall health is balanced. It's not about being 'perfect'; it's about feeling empowered and in control of your well-being! Let’s look at some simple ways to determine if you are in your healthy weight range.
Your healthiest weight is most likely not:
- Your lowest possible weight. Often, when people think of healthy weight loss, they become obsessed with trying to get as low as they can while still fitting within the "healthy range." They need to remember that continuing to go lower will eventually sacrifice muscle and protect fat—two things you don't want to do. An ideal weight should represent balance, featuring healthy ingredients and staying within the realm of possibility.
- Your high school weight. While your teenage self may have felt comfortable in that skin and body weight, the truth is that our bodies and dietary needs change as we mature. An ideal weight is beyond what you weighed in high school. Not to say your high school weight isn't achievable - it might be attainable with the right nutrition and workout plan. However, over time our metabolism slows down, and muscle mass decreases, so an ideal weight could be a healthier range lower than what you weighed during high school. Not only that, but factors such as age, genetics, lifestyle changes, and stress also play into how much we weigh at any given moment.
- Your fantasy weight. An ideal weight is not some magic number you see in a magazine or social media; it's the weight you feel best beyond just aesthetic – When you have the energy to move around, your clothes fit comfortably, and your parts work as they should! An ideal weight is about feeling good and being comfortable in your skin - whatever that looks like for you.
While your healthiest weight is likely:
- Your weight when your habits are consistent. Your healthiest weight is likely not the “perfect” one you’re imagining but rather the weight you land when your habits are consistently healthy and balanced. Develop healthy lifestyle habits that are easy to follow, making it easier for you to stay at a healthy weight without spending too much time and energy counting calories or obsessing over grams of sodium.
- Your weight when your habits are sustainable. Your healthiest weight is likely the one at which your habits are sustainable, meaning you can stick with them long-term without feeling deprived or overly restricted. That could mean eating a balanced diet with adequate amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables, getting enough exercise on most days of the week, drinking plenty of water, reducing stress, and even getting sufficient sleep each night.
- Your weight when your habits are realistic. The best way to make realistic habits is to start small. This means setting achievable goals that don’t require much effort or discipline. For example, if your ultimate goal is to cut out all processed foods from your diet, start by simply cutting out soda or something else that won’t seem like such a huge sacrifice. Once that becomes second nature, move on to something else. This gradual approach can help ensure success without feeling overwhelmed.
Knowing exactly where you stand concerning your health requires considering many factors beyond just looking at the number on the scale or measuring BMI levels. If you feel like something needs changing to live your best life possible, don't let anyone else dictate how that should be done; instead, listen to your own body and make sure that whatever changes you make come from within yourself! Ultimately, leading a healthy lifestyle is about finding balance within yourself.
The key takeaway here is that being at a “healthy" number on the scale doesn't necessarily guarantee good health; ultimately, it's all about balance - both in terms of diet and exercise and understanding your own needs and respecting them accordingly. Achieving true wellness goes far beyond just numbers on the scale - so don't forget to take care of yourself from the inside out!