Healthy Weight Week has been recognized for 20 years in the hopes that it will help celebrate healthy, diet-free living habits that last a lifetime and prevent eating and weight problems.
According to the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors’ (NASMHPD) Report on Morbidity and Mortality, individuals living with serious mental illness die 25 years earlier than other Americans, largely due to treatable medical conditions. The causes of illness and death among people with mental illness are virtually the same as for those in other parts of the population (obesity, diabetes, and cigarettes; which are three major causes of preventable death), and are treatable.
Healthy Weight Week is not just about food, but rather about managing your health, often which means making changes to your daily life, working with your health care team, and accepting the support of family and friends. Many aspects of your health are connected. Having one disease definitely puts you at risk for getting another. For example, having diabetes may lead to a heart disease if not properly treated. But, small steps can make a big difference!
Healthy Weight Week is a reminder to adjust your lifestyle so you can live longer – not to start a diet or go on a healthy eating binge.
Healthy Weight Week can also serve as a reminder to talk to your health care provider so that he/she may suggest healthier ways of living for you based on your medical history. One way your doctor might recommend that you start a healthier lifestyle change is promoting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s ChooseMyPlate.gov resource to help you manage your weight by balancing your plate.
Use Healthy Weight Week as a reminder to check in with yourself. Are you where you want to be health wise in life? If not, what changes can you make?