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Fitness

Overcoming obstacles to weight loss

I am 49 and 136kg. I would like to lose weight but I have found it hard, with dialysis four times a week, and diabetes, and neuropathy that makes it difficult to exercise. There is no gym or access to a pool and I can't afford a treadmill, can you help with some pointers?
Obstacles can all be overcome where there's a will and while your personal circumstances make exercise harder for you than most, it's not impossible. It's also clear from what you say that, for your health, you have no choice but to lose some weight. That may sound harsh, but there is no way to describe how wonderful you'll feel when you do achieve significant weight loss. I have a client who has lost 35kg and has turned his life around completely. In a year he's changed jobs, become a father, exercises five times a week and no longer needs his asthma inhaler. With effort and determination, you too could enjoy a new lease on life. It's easy to feel like a victim when you're deeply entrenched in the health system, reliant on medication, but you must take responsibility for your own health and try to reverse some of the damage your lifestyle has been partly responsible for. Being non-weight bearing, swimming is the best exercise you can do, but if you have no access to a pool you can start by walking every day. Wear good shoes for support and even if you can only walk for 15 to 20 minutes to start with, you should be able to increase the time and intensity each week. Throughout the day you should always try to move around and do more. Any physical activity is better than sitting on the lounge. If there's an option to take the stairs instead of a lift or elevator, do it. Cleaning is a good way to boost the metabolism and burn calories. Do things you may have been putting off, like cleaning out cupboards, washing windows and floors, steam cleaning carpets and scrubbing the oven. What a sense of accomplishment that could bring — both you and the house will benefit. No doubt the hospital has given you dietary advice, so follow it and do something physical everyday. Bit by bit you'll start to feel better. Don't worry about how long it's going to take, concentrate on the day you're in and the sense of achievement you feel when you achieve your daily exercise and diet goal. Even if it does take two years, you have to start somewhere. Two years from today you could be 50kg lighter and looking and feeling 15 years younger … Or not. It's all up to you. I love macadamia nuts, and thought they were good for me, but someone recently told me they had as much fat in them as than butter. Is this true? Macadamia nuts are almost as high in fat as butter, but unlike butter, with two thirds its total fat content from saturated fat and cholesterol, macadamias are a rich source of monounsaturated fat and contain no cholesterol. The difference between the two is that butter (eaten in excess) can raise levels of cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease, while macadamias can help to lower cholesterol and prevent heart disease. Macadamias are also a reasonable source of fibre, the antioxidant selenium and protein. They are therefore a much healthier food than butter and can be enjoyed in moderation. If you are trying to lose weight, limit your intake to a 20g serve (the equivalent of about 10 nuts). This provides around 600kj of energy and makes it a perfect energy boost for an afternoon snack.

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