Guiding Light of The Month

Tell me, wilt Thou grant me the marvellous power to give birth to this dawn in expectant hearts, to awaken the consciousness of men to Thy sublime presence, and in this bare and sorrowful world awaken a little of Thy true Paradise? What happiness, what riches, what terrestrial powers can equal this wonderful gift! - The Mother

Walking in Light: Body Weight

The column “Walking in Light” is back on track, after a few issues of absence, due to reasons already published. In the last few issues, topics ranging from food, sleep and dreams were cursorily visited. In this comeback issue, the topic examined is “Body Weight”.

It was reported in Pucher (2010) that over the last 30 years, the rate of obesity has increased and to date, the World Health Organisation puts the number on obese adults around the world at 300 million. This seems to be directly related to the growth of affluence, which puts at our easy disposal readily available calories-rich food for our consumption and at the same time, automation that reduces physical activities considerably. Obesity raises the alarm bell for several life-threatening diseases such as high-blood pressure or hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, such as heart attacks and angina, gout, gallstones and fatty livers (Pucher, 2010). A healthy life-style rests on a healthy regime of food intake, exercises, rest and relaxation. With these will usually fall into place a healthy and acceptable body weight, together with a body that provides one with a firm material support and basis for all activities in life.

What is one’s acceptable weight? A useful measure of whether one is overweight or not is through the Body Mass Index (BMI). This is calculated based on Weight divided by the square of Height:

BMI
Underweight Below 18.5
Normal 18.5–24.9
Overweight 25.0–29.9
Obesity 30.0 and Above


Body Weight/ Height Squared = BMI

The Body Mass Index gives an approximation on how heavy an individual should be at different heights. BMI is also an estimate of body fat and can serve as a good gauge of fat related health risks. To compute your BMI using the BMI calculator, you can visit the following website by the American based National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute at http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bmi-m.htm.

The two most important determinants of weight are the intake of the right types and amounts of food and adequate measure of activities in the course of the day. Essentially, this translates into a formula of input equating output and not one in excess of the other, which spells either an underweight or an overweight condition.

Keeping the body trim and fit is an essential component of Integral Yoga, for the purpose of introducing more and more perfection in the way the body functions and to increase in it suppleness in order to be able to function in works dedicated to the Divine in increasing levels of perfection.

The future newsletters will examine weight related issues in some detail.
- Jayanthy

Reference
1. Pucher, J., et al. (2010). Walking and Cycling to Health – A Comparative Analysis of City, State and International Data. American Journal of Public Health, October 2010, Vol. 100, No 100 P 1986 – 1992.
2. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, USA. Website: http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bmi-m.htm.

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