Every year I make the same resolution to lose five pounds. I’ve never succeeded in losing the five pounds but, I haven’t gained any weight either. This year is different, however. I’ve mysteriously gained five pounds while doing nothing different from the previous years.
I hear similar stories from other women my age, and many of us wonder if we should just accept this added weight as part of aging and start purchasing clothes one size larger. After all, it’s just five pounds. How bad can an extra five pounds be?
I remembered hearing an equation regarding the pressure of extra weight on your joints and decided to do a little research. According to the website Sharecare and several others, being overweight puts huge pressure on your joints. Here’s the equation: For each extra pound of excess weight on your body, you add 3 times that amount of pressure on your knees.
So the answer to my question is, five extra pounds adds 15 pounds of pressure to my aging knees, and that’s certainly not good. And the pressure is more than doubled when walking up stairs! Instead of multiplying those five extra pounds by 3, you multiply by 7. Fifteen pounds of pressure just became 35 pounds. Over time, the force of those five extra pounds will wear down my cartilage, leading to arthritis. Losing the extra five pounds just moved from a vanity issue to a mobility issue!
From a very practical point of view, losing five pounds in one year is doable – for everyone. The Sharecare website goes on to state that the damage from the added pressure can be stopped and reversed. “As you lose weight and reduce the pressure on your joints, the cushioning between your bones will build back up. A 10 pound weight loss over 10 years may result in as much as a 50 percent decrease in your odds of developing osteoarthritis.”
So summon up a little *finesse and join me in kicking five pounds off the scales this year! Who knows, maybe we’ll feel so good about losing those five pounds, we’ll knock off another five pounds next year! But let’s do this one step at a time. And that may well be a literal statement if you’re carrying quite a bit of extra weight. Maybe the only thing you can do is get off the couch during commercial breaks during your favorite TV show and walk to the sink and get a glass of water. That’s movement and certainly better than sitting motionless for 30 minutes to an hour.
Let me know what you’re doing to lose five pounds and protect your joints.
My wellness finesse level:
Novice Advanced beginner Competent Proficient Expert
What’s your wellness finesse level?
*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)