Obviously losing weight to get down into the healthy weight range will go along way to alleviate many of your health problems. This can range from breathlessness, high blood pressure, joint pain and sleep problems. But can weight loss impact other areas of your life?
I often hear people say things along the lines of "oh, that persons so slim, I bet they're so happy" or "If I was 40lb lighter I'd be happier". Is their any truth to this? Does being slim solve all kinds of issues? Will weight-loss solve any of these problems?
Weight loss will work wonders for your confidence and self-esteem and it's likely that other aspects of your personality will change too, as a consequence of exercising and eating healthily. For example, you may feel more outgoing, happier, and to some extent, less stressed, as exercise can help you cope with anxiety and even anger. Next time you really want to shout at someone, whether they've done something to annoy you or it's just one of them days, try a Martial arts class to kick and punch out the frustration. If you're nervous for an exam, a work presentation or an interview, try a yoga class to focus your mind and relax you.
Verdict: Yes. Weight loss, or more specifically, healthy lifestyle changes such as good food and regular exercise will help with some psychological issues like confidence, stress, anger and nerves.
For this area, weight loss really is a 'make or break'. Some rubbish friends may resent the new, happy, healthy, confident you and this is actually a good thing. If they can't be happy for your newly found health and waistline and they're not willing to open up and sort it out with a good old honest chat, then let them toddle off. You're are very likely to make new friends, because 1) you'll be more confident, thus more approachable, 2) If you take part in any group workout classes you'll meet strangers who will become your friends simply because you share a common interest, and 3) old friends may see your success posted all over Facebook when your holiday pictures go up, and then get back in contact to find out how you did it!
Verdict: Yes, it could help with this. More often than not, the new happy you will attract lots of exciting new friends and may even spark up conversation old friends.
This is tricky area. The obvious advantage is that more confidence could give you a much needed boost in er... that department... but only if it was your confidence bringing it down rather than other factors.
Never lose weight because you want someone to 'love you more', if they don't love you already, for being you, then chances are it wouldn't be a very deep or meaningful relationship once you've lost weight.
If weight changes put a strain on a relationship (whether up or down), you really need to ask yourself if the relationship is suffering from other issues (e.g. trust, jealousy, infidelity, incompatibility, poor communication). If it is, then weight loss will not solve this.
Of course, this differs for singletons, that boost in confidence could be exactly what you needed to get you talking (and flirting) with new people!
Verdict: No. If there's problems in the relationships that extend further than sex-in-the-dark-because-of-wobbly-bits, there's nothing weight loss can do to fix it. Bottom line: You shouldn't have to change yourself to make someone else happy or attracted to you. Do it for you, and you alone. It's a 'yes', for singletons however, based on the simple rule that confidence is sexy and makes you a good flirt.
If you have a job that requires you to be fit and healthy (think police, armed forces, fireman, nurse, fitness instructor) then yes, obviously weight loss and a healthy lifestyle will help you. It may even open these up as career options for you.
Many studies have shown that larger people are discriminated by employers who believe obesity is a physical indicator for laziness or out-of-control behaviours. If this is the case, then weight loss could help you out a small amount in job interviews, but really it comes down to what you say and how you say it. I'm pretty sure that good knowledge of the company combined with the right outfit, a strong handshake and a confident smile would override any weighty concerns the interviewer may have, so I wouldn't let this become a major issue.
Losing a few lbs is unlikely to be the reason for promotion either, but the newly found confidence on the other hand, that could play a role.
Verdict: Yes, for active careers, but 'not really' for less active careers where it's very much down to your knowledge, your networks and how you come across as a person.
Whilst you may save money by cutting out less healthy activities, such as smoking, excessive drinking and takeaways, you'll likely trade these expenses for fresh fruit and veg, gym membership, new clothes and maybe even fitness gadgets .
Verdict: Nope, Weight loss will not solve this problem, but with some clever planning and sacrifice of unhealthy activities, it doesn't have to add to the problem.
There's something about changing your lifestyle for better health and a smaller waist that makes you crave adventure. You've proved to yourself that you can embark on a difficult and even exciting journey, and by the time you've reached goal, you're wanting the next adventure. Perhaps your fitness is at sky-high levels and you fancy proving it by climbing a mountain, running a marathon or cycling 100 miles across the country to the seaside! For me, I crave travel and sight seeing. I want to climb a mountain, hike through rain forests, trek across a dessert and swim in amazing scenic locations, just to to say that I have and I can (plus the photos would brighten up my Facebook!).
Verdict: No, eeight loss will not give you adventure, but it is very likely to give you an adventurous streak. Unfortunately, it's not exactly going to book the plane tickets or pay for the travel expenses. You'll also still have to earn a living on a day-to-day basis, despite fitting in smaller dress sizes and looking amazing (so unfair, I know).
Overall score: 3.5 out of 6 - Weight loss and it's health and psychological benefits will certainly have a knock on effect on the other parts of your life, but it won't solve all of your problems, particularly those relating to finance, routine living and damaged relationships.