And the sign flashed out its warning–obesity rates have reached the critical point. This isn’t a conspiracy theory–obesity is a Defcon 1 global health emergency, said the Guardian on Feb. 7. Health crusaders like Jamie Oliver are calling for more Draconian “ninja” strategies and less politically correct posturing to combat obesity. One of the guerrilla warfare approaches is the hotly debated sugar tax in Great Britain. Has it really come to that–taxing junk food to get people to quit eating so poorly? 70 percent of the world is overweight and 37 percent are obese to morbidly obese–so you be the judge.

Do you ever find it depressing to hear about the obesity epidemic? Is there any positive news on that front? Yes and here it is–obesity is treatable and reversible. Unlike cancer, the prognosis for obesity is terrific! Because sufferers can literally erase their own obesity-related health problems (and those are legion). How–well, at the risk of sounding like a broken record–with healthy dieting. Cleaning up eating habits is the only way to permanently lose weight. Exercise will get you fitter, but only healthy dieting (calorie counting, portion control, call it what you will) sheds fat. And healthy dieting has value-added perks. Along with losing weight, you lose other health problems, depression, exhaustion and low self-esteem. Weight loss can restore lost mojo and help you find confidence if you never had it. Here’s how to reverse obesity, depression, low self-esteem with positive life hacks.

Positive life hacks of safe healthy dieting. The keywords here are “healthy dieting” and “safe.” Crash or fad diets, where you eat only a few foods, buy special products or restrict entire food groups aren’t healthy. Lengthy fasting deprives you of necessary nutrients. You get shaky and crabby. Your body rebels and seeks to get what it needs. Very few people are at their best when they’re starved, jittery and run down, You can see positive, only negative. Extreme unsafe dieting actually causes depression, exhaustion and low self-esteem. I’m not at my best. Follow sensible safe diet tips like those recommended by Dr. Oz. Yes, Dr. Oz is a bit controversial, but for as a weight loss guru, he can’t be beat.

Positive life hacks–Fat-titude Adjustment. So crash dieting is a positivity killer, but so is being obese. You feel weak, out of control and ashamed You start copping a fat-titude. Negative self-image and low self-esteem say that because you are fat, you are also by default, useless. A fat-titude is defeatist. So, change your mind and teach it to practice skinny-think. Instead of moping about being fat and complaining that you can’t lose (something everyone who’s been overweight does), challenge yourself to get thin. Remind yourself of the success you’ve had in other areas–school, work, parenting, relationships. You don’t feel successful at anything? Well, that’s fat-titude talking. Use the Al-Anon slogan and fake it till you make it. Work at losing weight and as you do, you’ll begin to see you what a wonderful person you really are. Nothing succeeds like success, especially in weight loss. From the downward spiral of obesity, you’ll begin to spiral upward to feel more attractive, confident, positive and proud of yourself for having the gumption to lose.

Positive life hacks–go shopping! Clothes shopping is a dreaded chore when you’re overweight. Nothing fits, except frumpy and dumpy plus-size. It’s like garment designers don’t even try with plus-size. Anything will do for the fat person they seem to think. And it’s especially sad for obese teens who want dress fashionably. Talk about a kick to the confidence. And don’t even get started on the misery that comes from trying on sizes that once fit and are now too tight. You grab the blah and ugly, not caring how it looks or fits. Shopping when fat is a one-way trip, no stops or changes, on the depression merry-go-round. But after losing weight shopping is fun again. Retail therapy is the perfect non-food reward for weight loss. Now you can shop misses and juniors and get more fashionable styles. You can shop where your teens shop and actually find clothes that fit! Granted, adults may not want to wear teeny-bopper fashions. But it feels good to know you can! Oh, and don’t wait till you’ve lost all the weight to buy new clothes. There’s is no reward so sweet as to be able to put away those new clothes because they are now too big!

Grace returns after positive life hacks. Have you always been uncoordinated? (Author raises hand!) Gaining weight doesn’t help. It makes you clumsy and tired. Your posture suffers. You try to hide fat by sitting and standing in awkward positions. You look uncomfortable and self-conscious. But after losing weight, oh frabjous day, you’re more graceful. You may never be Dame Margot Fonteyn, but at least you can walk without stumbling. You can hold your head proud, instead of slouching in shame. (Actually, you should do that even if you are overweight. It’s nothing to be ashamed of! The best confidence booster is accept yourself, love yourself as you are and aim to be the best you can be. Then you’ll have the confidence and motivation to lose weight.

Healthy is Happy. If people who lose weight seem to glow on the outside, it’s because they’re cleaner on the inside. Obesity brought many health problems–high cholesterol, pre-diabetes, liver swelling, back pain, breathing problems. Clean the junk from your diet. Try antioxidant acai, apple cider and raspberry ketones. Take omega supplements to burn bad fat with good. Use green tea as a system cleansing metabolism booster. Just about any obesity-related health issue is reversible with healthy dieting. You’ll still struggle with some health problems–they’re part of life. But by fixing what you can, feel stronger and better able to cope with them. Want to kick that depression and low self-esteem in the butt and put some spring in your step? Shed those extra pounds (if you have them). You’ll be glad you did! Your body will bless you with a happier, healthier you.