Seeing beyond Weight-loss: A Total Approach to Weight and Health

beyond weight-loss hiking

When most of us think about our weight, we tend to think in terms of pounds and physical appearance. Weight management is about a lot more than this, however. Remember — your weight matters for your health.

Common Perceptions about Weight-loss

Think about all of the things which contribute to weight-loss:

  • A healthy, balanced nutrition plan
  • A comprehensive fitness routine/plan
  • Behavior modification
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • And more

In any given circumstance, many of us might think about the external benefits which accompany these behaviors. We imagine ourselves in thinner bodies and think about the positive reactions from family and friends. Maybe we picture the types of clothes we’ll be able to wear, or the social/mental benefits we’ll reap if we reach our goal weight.

Ironically, these common perceptions are also what fuel many media messages about weight-loss and weight management. Commercials, billboards and print advertisements appeal to our emotions by motivating us through happier relationships, greater confidence, attractiveness, social status and more. After all, these are common things we strive toward.

Seeing beyond Weight-loss to Better Health

While these types of reactions are normal, they fail to consider the bigger picture in terms of weight-loss: better health. Ultimately, a healthy weight is the foundation for a happy and healthy life.

Just like you were asked to consider all of the things which contribute to weight-loss, think about all of the things which contribute to a greater quality of life. A few examples include:

  • Greater energy
  • Pain reduction
  • Disease risk reduction
  • Better sleep
  • Stronger immune system
  • Improved mobility
  • And more

Ironically, these very examples are also benefits to weight-loss — which goes to show the significant impact that weight has on overall health. Although there are many contributors to issues with weight (including behavioral, environmental and biological factors), there is also a lot that we can do to strive towards a healthier lifestyle.


A healthier weight is essential to a healthier lifestyle. While it’s normal to want to lose weight for the associated external benefits, we’re a lot more likely to succeed if we keep in mind the internal, long-term benefits as well.