Solving The Obesity Epidemic With Whole Foods

According to a wide array of research, the average citizen in America is getting fatter! Since the 1960's, the obesity rate of Americans has quadrupled! It is estimated that at least 25% of American adults are obese, and at least 18% of American children are obese. To learn how we can begin to resolve this obesity epidemic, continue reading this article. Through the article we will discuss why it is important to reverse the effects of obesity, as well as how we can go about solving this epidemic with a healthy, whole foods diet.

Let's begin by discussing why it is important that we try to solve the obsesity epidemic. As most people know, obesity can lead to a wide range of serious health complications. According to research, those who are obese are at a significantly heightened risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer, bone and joint problems, and many other serious health conditions. It is there because extremely important that we begin to focus on decreasing the amount of obesity within the population, so that we can decrement our health issues and costs.

Solving the obesity epidemic begins with the encouragement of healthy eating habits. While eating healthy can sometimes be expensive, the payoffs are well worth the cost. Let's take a brief look at how eating healthy can affect our weight and our health.

French fries, pizza, and hot dogs may be tasty, but they are certainly not doing anything to help you lose weight. If you want to lose weight, you want to stick to a diet that includes a wide range of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Each of these foods will provide your body with the vital minerals and nutrients that it needs to thrive, without damaging it with fat, sodium, and calories that cause our bodies to gain weight.

According to research, fruits and vegetables play an important role in the process of weight loss and weight management. Not only do fruits and vegetables provide you with minerals, nutrients, and vitamins, but they are also low in calories, allowing us to eat large portions without gaining weight.

Fruits and vegetables, however, are not the only foods that can benefit in weight loss solutions. Whole grains are also very important in weight management. Whole grain foods contain large amounts of fiber, a component that will keep your body feeling full longer, allowing you to consume less and thereby take less calories.

As one can see, a healthy diet is the cheapest form of health insurance that you can buy. Promoting healthy eating and a diet full of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains is the first step to solving the obesity epidemic. To learn more about how a whole foods diet can help you combat weight gain, continue searching the internet. There are many resources out there that can provide you with detailed information and healthy eating plans that can help you in your personal weight loss goals.

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Basic Obesity Facts and Losing Weight – A Clear Path to Good Health

One of the most intriguing health problems in the world today is obesity. It has been the topic of discussion in many seminaries where doctors and non physicians have been presenting their point of view. There has been a lot of talk about this problem, but so far it seems that little has been done to spread awareness about the implications of obesity.

Obesity and weight loss are some of the favorite topics for corporate health care seminars. The need to avoid and reduce all the ills of this problem is spoken in great detail. Yet obesity remains where it has been. The number of people suffering from obesity is growing and so is the risk of cardiac problems, strokes and cancer among the general population.

The immediate action so far has been to go for a symptomatic treatment of the related problems. It gives the patient immediate, but temporary relief. The fat cells continue to grow and spread. After some time the patient is back to the same uncomfortable health threatening position. There have been different medical cases in which extreme obesity has been observed. For many patients, nothing could be done to treat the alarming condition effectively.

The craving for food when there is no hunger present is one of the surest symptoms of obesity. Excessive food intake without any burning of the calories accumulated results in the formation of fat deposits around the different organs of the body. As weight increases, there is a growing sense of lethargy and drowsiness which prohibits the patient from doing any physical exercise. There will be lame excuses for not going for a brisk morning walk or for doing other exercises. In the end, physical exertion takes the back seat.

The intake of food, however, continues at the same spirited level. There is no giving up on that front. The patient has the feeling that if he or she does not eat enough, there will be serious consequences. The fact that the hunger is triggered by stress or depression is conveniently overlooked and the patient becomes a victim of false psychological alarms. As this continues over a period of time, there is less fatigue or physical stress. When all this happens, weight loss becomes a distant dream.

Obesity and weight loss are related terms. The first is the consequence of bad habits and the other is the possible remedy that is hard ever used.

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Global Obesity – The Epidemic Showing Up All Over the World

If you look closely at the demographic details of the world, you would find that most of the people with fat bellies and flabby limbs are from the developed countries in the world. Take for example the US. More than two-thirds of the population of the country is in a state of obesity, in one way or the other. Obese children are growing in numbers at a higher rate compared to adults.

Their regular consumption of junk foods, preference for fries over vegetables, the lack of fruit in their meals and a number of other factors have exposed them to obesity and a variety of diseases at a very young age. They live with the problem through the rest of their lives and always have to remain alert about warning symptoms appearing.

On the other hand, take a look at the African population. People from Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and some other poor countries are well-built, even though they may not be muscular. But they do not have cardiac problems chasing them through their life. They have a meal of fresh mostly vegetable produce and rarely cook their food. The fruits and berries collected from the forests and the fruits and vegetables produced in fields serve their purpose. The people in Africa do hard physical labor; there are no computers and no need for these people to sit all day breaking their heads with complex problems. They have a very simple lifestyle with a few wants. In turn, they get to experience very little stress.

African people do have other medical problems; however not obesity. Their lifespan is relatively short because they are weak and vulnerable to other diseases. But as far as cardiac diseases are concerned, they just do not have them. Their lean bodies are built to cope with the life in a tough natural environment. Their primary needs remain food, clothing and shelter.

Therefore, the conclusion is that the more active you are the greater your chances are developing heart disease. This health condition can pose imminent danger on your life. Fried chickens and French fries washed down with generous amounts of soda may sound delicious, but over a period of time the consequences are more damaging than anything else.

In order to avoid obesity or cure it, you should adopt a healthy lifestyle with more physical exercise and a diet with simple healthy foods. Reducing the stress in your life is equally important.

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Are You Obese? Statistics On Obesity May Indicate You Are

There are two types of fats in the human body – essential body fat and stored body fat. The first type is what is needed to maintain life and the reproductive functions, while the second type genes in the connective tissues and around the body organs and is what usually causes obesity. How can you determine what the percentage of fat in your body? Simply divide your total amount of fat by your body weight.

The ideal percentage of fat in the human body is between 1% and 19%. This means that if you have 20% body fat or higher, you are generally considered to obese.

Obesity is typically divided into three categories: mild, moderate and gross (also known as morbid obesity). Mild obesity is the most common, with 90% of obese people falling into this category. Mild obesity is diagnosed when the weight is 20% -40% above normal weight limits. Only 9% of people who suffer from obesity fall into the moderate category. Moderate obesity occurs when the weight is between 40% and 100% above the normal body weight. Lastly, only about 1% of those considered obese are classified as “grossly obese”. To grossly obese, you must weigh over 100% of your normal body weight.

Although only 1% of the obese population is considered to be grossly obese, that number is quickly rising, as child obesity rates are skyrocketing around the globe. Many fast food companies target young children with toys and greasy, fattening products. A typical children's meal at a popular fast food restaurant contains roughly 600 calories, 23 grams of fat (6g saturated), and over 800mg of sodium. Obesity is undeniably a worldwide problem, but there are ways to fight it.

Knowing your daily recommended amount of calories, fat and carbohydrates is essential for staying healthy. Many people lack one of these nutrients and consume too much of another. This leads to an unbalanced diet and can result in weight gain. It is important to know how much to eat exactly and what is present in the food that you eat. Reading nutrition information on packaged food is essential for knowing what is in your meal. Many chain restaurants offer nutritional information for most, if not all items on their menu. If you take the initiative to learn what is in your food, and you know how many calories, carbohydrates, and fat you need daily, you can lead a healthy lifestyle and fight obesity.

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If You Are Obese How Much Folic Acid You Need to Reduce Your Weight?

Obesity is bad. But do not lose heart. Where there is a will there is a way. If you are obese your hormones always look for eating something. You will not be able to resist. The best way to resist is not go for dieting but to go for small portion of nutritious eatables. Do not fall prey to your tongue. Fall pray to your health. Nothing can substitute the work out. Consistency is the mantra. Otherwise what amount of nutrition you take and how often you take to control your diet will not bear any fruit. The experience is only bitter.

If you are obese how much of folic acid you need is the question. First of all let us see whether this nutrition helps obesity. In fact there is no direct evidence to prove that it helps to reduce your weight. But the fact is inadequate folic acid will hamper lipid metabolism. From this angle there is an indirect benefit to reduce the weight.

We are made up of trillions of cells which are nothing but building blocks of protein. For protein synthesis folate is important. Whenever our body finds no glucose it turns to seek for reserve fat. Here the nutrition folate helps to metabolize the fat by breaking them down and provide energy. In this way the quantum of fat is reduced. We can say to this extent there is a help for weight loss and a solution to obesity.

It is very interesting to note that without folic acid the DNA and RNA are redundant. DNA plays a vital role to find the root cause of obesity. There are hundreds of reasons why a person is obese. Untitled correctly properly it will be difficult to pin point and provide solution. From this angle folate is very important to keep in tact the DNA to support the diagnosis. Although these are far-fetched reasons the fundamentals of this nutrition to protein synthesize can not be under. This is essential to attack obesity.

Having known the importance if you are obese how much folic acid you need? All adults should have 400 to 500 mcg of folic acid every day. Pregnant woman should have 600 mcg per day. Because folic acid is important for rapid cell division and formation. The fetus in the mother undergoes such condition and the mother should have adequate quantity of folate.

Folic acid is rich in citrus fruits like orange, pineapple, strawberry etc. Take spinach, broccoli and green turnip to get good amount of folate. Pig liver has folate. You can also take folic acid fortified foods like bread and breakfast cereals.

My suggestion will be to go in for a complete planned nutrition intake including folic acid to solve the obesity. Of course there is no substitute for work out. Daily I take a fantastic nutrition supplement that has more than 70 herbs and salts that provides all the nutrition. This holistic approach is the best solution to come out of obesity. Visit my website and I am sure you will have more answers to the question if you are obese how much folic acid is required.

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3 Medical Conditions That Could Possibly Be the Cause of Your Obesity

Obesity is not something that occurs overnight. People start to gain weight due to overeating, poor diet and lack of physical exercise over a long period of time. Still, there are certain medical causes that lead to obesity. Some medical conditions trigger obsesity without the person changing their diet and lifestyle habits.

So it's best for people who are suffering from obesity to take it seriously. It is necessary for them to get a physical examination and have tests for diagnosing or refuting the presence of a disease that may be the possible causes of obesity. Medical experts know that weight gain can be a result from certain body disorders and diseases that makes it difficult for the individual not to gain weight. Still, there are also certain genetic factors that may lead to obesity in combination with a disease.

There are 3 common medical conditions that can cause obesity in people. These are:

Cushing's syndrome:

This medical condition is caused by an increase in the levels of Cortisol, a steroid hormone. People suffering from Cushing's syndrome gain weight particularly in the upper back and lower back. Their face is also affected.

This condition occurs when excess Cortisol is secreted in the body, because of dysfunction of the adrenal glands or because of taking a Glucocorticoid medication. This condition can also be caused by tumors that increase the secretion of this specific hormone.

Hypothyroidism:

Hypothyroidism slows down the metabolic rate of an individual. This condition occurs in patients who thyroid gland is underactive and has decreased hormone production. This causes obesity in almost all cases, as fat is stored in the body instead of being used up in the form of energy. Patients that suffer from severe hypothyroidism are much more likely to suffer than obesity than others. Apart from gaining weight, they get a bloated appearance, especially in the face area and in the area around their eyes.

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome:

Women, who suffer from polycystic ovarian syndrome, end up with increased secretion of the male hormone Androgen. In turn the production of eggs in the ovaries is affected and they develop into cysts. This causes irregular menstrual cycles in females. This may also cause obesity. If this condition is left untreated, it can also lead to infection and many other medical complications.

Although any of these medical conditions could have the primary causes of your obesity, it is most important to get a good diet and exercise plan.

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Taking The Steps To Eliminate Obesity

This country is full of people that are trying to lose weight and all you have to do is turn on the television to see the severity of the obesity problem in this country. There are a large number of television shows that deal with people trying to lose weight and small number of these shows includes people that weigh more than 500 pounds. It is hard for me to imagine how many calories a day a person would have to consume to be able to maintain a weight of 500 pounds.

I have found that losing weight is as much about having balance in your life as it is about eating healthy. For many people it is going to be difficult to eat healthy if they are overwhelmed in other areas of their lives. They say problematic jobs and debt are two of the largest reasons why people feel overwhelmed and eat to make themselves feel better. Obesity begins with emotional eating. Although, people may not know exactly what they are expected to eat and in one portions, most people have some idea what will keep them healthy and what will keep them over weight.

Jobs are hard to do a whole lot about. You can look for a new one, but in the current economy you would probably be farther ahead to make the most of what you have. If you have debt, talk to a consumer credit counseling company about the best way of beginning to eliminate your debt. This will get you on your way to solving one of the problems that often leads to compulsive overeating. As far as losing the weight, I recommend small steps and not just with food. You will need to work on fitness, mental health and not having one area of ​​your life consuming it.

Losing weight and being healthy is as much mental as it is physical. If you are an emotional eater, you can have all the knowledge to eat healthy and still struggle keeping your weight under control, because you may eat for comfort or eat when you are not hungry. And unfortunately dealing with your emotions is something you can take a pill to change. It often takes hard work and learning to deal with the stress of day to day living in a positive manner. Making healthy changes will not happen overnight, but if you can have each day be better than the last, you are on the right track.

Copyright (c) 2011 Marjorie Salada

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Obesity in Seniors – Added Risks Make Overweight Elderly Particularly Vulnerable to Health Problems

Obesity is a problem for people of all ages from young to old. It can lead to serious medical conditions that can be life threatening. Obesity in seniors is very risky because these people are already at a stage in their life in which their bodily functions slow down and their metabolic rate decreases. In turn, they are more likely to become obese and get serious medical problems. Furthermore, seniors are more likely to fall ill in general. Obesity may further complicate their health problems.

Aging is the main factor determining the health of a senior citizen and with obesity lurking in the fore front, health complications are more likely to occur. In turn, the elderly people are at higher risk of being affected by various diseases. Regrettably, most people are not even aware that they are medically obese. For this reason, awareness must be created so that positive steps can be adopted to get rid of obesity.

Obesity stands out as a real threat to longevity and healthy life. The dangers of excess body fat are many in adults. This is because with the advancing of age their body physiology slows down as and their body organs also do not function as efficiently as in young adults. So seniors should take special care that they do not get obese.

The hearts of overweight seniors have to work harder to pump blood. This results in the enlargement of the heart muscle. This can lead to serious heart diseases. Hypertension is another health problem that senior adults face. The problem can go unnoticed for a long time and lead to heart disease. Additionally, obese people are at higher risk of getting high cholesterol. As cholesterol builds up in the arteries the blood flow is obstructed. This also leads to a higher risk of developing heart problems. If the internal organs stop getting adequate blood supply they cease to function properly.

The presence of excess body fat may result in a hormonal imbalance and lead to cancer. Similarly, some foods such as meat develop carcinogenic substances when they are exposed to excess heat. For all these reasons, older men are at a risk of developing prostate cancer while older women are more likely to fall victim to endometrial and breast cancer. In general, seniors who are obese are more likely to develop different kinds of gastrointestinal cancer, such as colorectal cancer.

Even though these are the main ones, there are innumerable other diseases that can result from obesity in seniors. That is why it is best that you always keep yourself in good shape. Adopt a healthy diet that can suit your comfort level and will work out best for you. Your diet can be planned by a medical expert who knows what ingredients will help you lose weight and stay healthy and fit for a long time. People who have an active lifestyle and good eating habits are less likely to suffer from such complications. It's time to take control over the situation as soon as possible as. Keep in mind that it's never too late to get rid of the excess body weight by following precise health plans.

Depression is another problem that can be caused by obesity. Obese people are less likely to enjoy recreational activities and even simple ones, such as going to the local store. They are more worried about their looks. Furthermore, the more depressed you are the more you eat. This makes the problem even more serious. When a person feels depressed, certain hormones cause him to feel low and thus, he ends up indulging in activities like overeating. This makes him even more obese. In general, senior citizens are more likely to suffer from depression when they live a lonelier life and try to justify their loneliness by uncontrollable eating habit.

The reality is that by losing weight you can fix much of the damages caused by your obesity and reduce the risk factors of various diseases. Just by losing weight you can live a happier life. The lower weight guarantees ease of movement and brings more self-confidence. This will allow you to enjoy life, despite your advanced age. This is beneficial for the physical as well as for the psychological health.

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Obesity Medical Dangers to the Heart That Either Must Be Addressed Now or Heavily Paid For Later

There are various cardiovascular diseases that are related to obesity. It is not absolutely certain that someone who is obese will be affected with one of them, but the probability is quite high. The most serious of these diseases is heart failure. The heart has to pump out more blood into the vascular system. In order for the system to keep functioning, it is constantly getting under more and more pressure. For this reason, any further increase in the BMI may actually result in critical cardiac conditions which may even be fatal. With this being the case, the immediate need for a drastic weight loss diet program coupled with an ongoing exercise and fitness regimen is necessary to reduce your risk of cardiac conditions substantively.

What actually happens is that the arteries carrying blood get clogged with layers of fat. This results in the thickening of the treaties. Once this happens, it becomes difficult for the blood to pass through the constrained inner passage with normal flow and pressure. These results in situations known as high blood pressure. High blood pressure negatively affects the function of the heart muscle and can lead to a heart attack. Situations like this can be controlled by controlling the blood pressure, but the first red flag, weight gain, has already played its crucial role.

If immediate actions for treatment are not initiated, there are further health complications that are lined to show up one after another. A fully clogged artery would need an immediate by-pass surgery, as it is medically referred to. Either an artificial artery is inserted into the system, or a part of another artery, sufficient clear from fat deposits, is surgically removed from another part of the body and used to replace the affected artery.

This increases the person's life expectancy respectably, but again there has to be immediate follow-up action initiated to prevent recurrence of the problem. Return to active life including a daily exercising regimen would now be a compulsory part of the recovery process. The more the exercise, the more calories will be burned. This will result in a healthy balance between proteins, fats and carbohydrates.

Over the years, doctors have been vigorously campaigning for the adoption of healthy diet. They recommend for green leafy vegetables and a bowl of sprouted seeds to be the principal food items for lunch or dinner, but not even 2% of the population of the country ever follows this advice. Green vegetables give the body all the nutrients and detoxifying agents that are required for nurturing the body and purifying the blood. This helps prevent and control obesity to a significant extent.

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Are You Healthy Enough To Lose Weight?

Obesity rates in the US have had some staggering numbers in the last 10 – 15 years and the US actually captured the title of 'the most obese country in the world' back in 2007 (recently surpassed only by Australia)! These facts and 'rewards' are nothing to be proud of but they do point towards the epidemic of obesity and prevalence of weight related health issues in the US.

While it is obvious that we are eating too much as a nation and too much of the wrong foods as well, there is ample data showing that people are also signing up to try and lose weight. It's also safe to say that the US has a plethora of weight loss methodologies, programs, professionals and opinions about the subject. Just go to the website worldometer.info and plug in 'money spent on weight loss programs in the USA today' and watch the dollar counter steadily and quickly rise in front of your eyes. I had to stop watching at the '65 million dollars spent mark 'just so I could get on with my day, but the dollar counter continued to soar swiftly upward without hesitation and did not seem to have a plan for stopping any time soon.

Even though you may not be obese, defined as Body Mass Index at 30 or greater, you may refer to being overweight, having 10, 15 or 20+ pounds to lose. You may also refer to having tried very hard a number of times to lose weight. Maybe you've signed up for various programs or have even been supervised medically or established a weight loss group among your friends. And even with all of that, the extra weight just does not stay off let alone come off at all for some of you. The question we all need to be asking is WHY?

Has anyone explained to you that in order to lose extra weight, that weight that really is not you, your body and its chemistry has to be functioning optimally. In other words, you have to be healthy first in order to successfully lose weight! There are so many reasons for one's inability to lose weight despite diligent effort: from insulin resistance and leptin resistance to undiscovered food intolerances, mounting toxic burdens or intestinal infections. Maybe your genetics is tipping the scales in the wrong direction for you starting with a bias in your taste system or maybe your liver enzyme chemistry is not as efficient as your neighbor's. There are many reasons why your valiant attempts to lose weight are experienced as futile and it's not because you are not trying. If you know that you have tried and your weight is not budging then you need to work with someone who will search amongst the many reasons for your weight loss resistance and find what is limiting you.

As a Certified Nutritionist I work to find 'weight loss limiters' and the greatest success with weight loss resistance occurs when a client realizes that getting their body's chemistry healthy first is key to achieving their weight loss goals.

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Get Over Your Weight Problems With a Fat Burner Pill – Trim Down Your Body Super Fast

Obesity is a major problem these days and it is the root cause of so many health problems and disorders. Yet. millions of people are overweight in today's date. People struggle hard to lose weight and a good quality fat burner pill can make things really easy for you.

Fat burners and fat pills have been around for so many years. However, such pills have undergone tremendous change over the past few years, not just in terms of effectiveness but also in terms of safety issues.

Most people avoid taking such people for the fear of side effects. If you have ever visited weight loss forums, I am sure you would have come across so many horror stories of how pills like ephedrine and phentermine have claimed in serious troubles for many people.

This is why such pills have been banned by the FDA. However, it does not mean there are no good quality fat burners around.

If you think, I'm going to recommend some kind of a natural weight loss pill, let me tell you that most of these pills lack any sort of reliable evidence to suggest that they are effective weight loss resources. Although the basic ingredient in such pills might be good at ensuring weight loss, most of such pills either do not have the required potency of that ingredient or contain an adulterated form of that ingredient.

Pharmacy grade fat burners can work exceptionally well. There are some that are clinically approved and can be bought over the counter legally. Not just this, they can also reduce your weight without any side effects. A high re-order rate is a clear indication of that fact that such pills really work and are very popular as well.

Such pills are formulated with enzyme boosters that not only supercharges your metabolism to ensure fast fat burning but also suppresses your appetite to ensure that you eat less.

Such pills can easily help you knock off up to 5 pounds within a week. One of the best ways to enhance the effect of such a fat pill is to combine it with light exercise. Not only will that make you lose weight faster but will also make you more active and energetic.

So, if You Want to Lose Weight and Get a Body that Can Make Heads Turn, Check out the Best Fat Burner Pill that has Become a Big Hit The World Over!

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The Effects of Obesity on the Body

Lets talk about the weight we put on in our midsection. That belly weight or should we come right out and say belly fat. Belly fat is clinically known as abdominal obesity or central obesity. A hard word to use, obesity. We like to say more delicious terms such as pleasingly plump, or have put on a few extra pounds or over weight.

I knew I needed to “lose a few pounds” so everybody does right? Life gets busy and we try to watch what we eat and be over all healthier. I had been losing weight for most of my adult life so I was not a novice to the idea. Then one day I did a body mass test online. How embarrassing, I was considered obese!

OK time to get back to the books and find out what is going on here. Time to get to the bottom (or should I say front) this and do something fast!

One definition of central obesity or belly weight / fat is, the accumulation of abdominal fat resulting in an increase in waist size. OK pretty straight forward right, or is it? Believe it or not the exact cause of central fat / belly fat is not well understood.

Another term for belly fat is visceral fat or organ fat as it is packed in between the internal organs and torso. So the excess of visceral fat / belly fat is known as central obesity, the “pot belly”, “beer belly” effect in which the belly protrudes and may so excessively.

What causes us to put on belly weight? We could say that it is an energy imbalance. We consume more calories than we burn or eliminate. So that belly fat is related to overeating or not enough exercise.

Prescription drugs can also have side effects that lead to central obesity / belly fat. So can food additives such as MSG. I have done a whole study on weight gain and MSG. When I removed it from my diet I lost 20 pounds. You can look up the connection or email me and I can send you my report.

While belly fat / central obesity is obvious by looking at the body it is actually determined by taking waist and hip measurements. This is to determine if it is a true condition of obesity or intestinal bloating and other abdominal conditions. This is not to be confused with body mass index. It is called the waist-hip ratio.

The medical profession sees belly fat as an indicator of health risk. It is statistically associated with heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and other health conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome and glucose intolerance.

That was enough for me to get serious with the loose a few pounds project. I knew I needed help. I had tied many, I mean I tried them all, as far as diet fads and pills and potions over the last 25 years. OOPs! I may be showing my age! Well anyway. Sometimes we need help.

I got more serious with my food choices and educated myself on labels. A good rule for labels, if it has more than a few ingredients such as 4 or 5 and you can not pronounce it, do not eat it! It is not real food and your body knows the difference.

I found some real food programs with some great menus and recipes thatave me a great starting point on my journey to wellness and losing the belly fat.

I learned a lot and found ways to share. I did some seminars and classes and now I am including web pages as resources for my findings and success.

Here is a bit of a advice, never give up on yourself and do not hesitate to try a new or different program if what you are using ins not working. You are worth it! And you will find something that works for you to shed that belly and fat. It may be the program or it may be the right timing for you.

Never Give UP !! What do you have to lose, but your health.

Be Encouraged, Karen Rae

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The Treatment of Obesity With Chinese Medicine (Part 2)

In my previous article on obesity I explained the general Chinese Medical reasons for weight problems. they can be summarized as follows: –

  • Eating the wrong types of foods , especially grains (carbohydrates rich) and also foods that are cold or oversweet such as ice-cream and artificial sweetened products such as chocolates and candy.
  • Poor metabolism or functioning of the organs that deal with digestion

In this second article I want to explore this further and explain the specific body types and patterns that make each person's weight loss problem different to the next and hence necessitate an individually tailor approach to treatment.

You must have already experienced cases where a diet or weight loss supplement worked wonders for one person but did not work at all for someone else. You must have also heard of people who lose weight so easily with exercise and others who just cant seem to get it off !! Why is this? Doctors and other allopathic practitioners battle with this because of an inherent flaw in the current scientific reasoning that all human beings are basically the same and function the same way. Well … I cant blame them, after all, we all look the same, two eyes, two ears, the same organs, the same basic structure, so how can people be different?

The fact is, we are not all the same, we may look the same and have the same basic physiology but just as people have different personalities, each of us has a slightly different way that our body does things, just as some are good at math and others at sports, so too are certain physiological processes better in some and not others. Medical research will eventually “discover” this fact just as science now acknowledges different personality types.

In the meanime we can learn from and appreciate the insight of the Founders of Chinese Medical theory who long ago realized that there are 5 basic body types and each of these were predisposed to certain physiological strengths and weaknesses which determined very often the types of illnesses they would be afflicted with and also the method of treatment that would be most effective as well as the optimum lifestyle factors for each type including diet, exercise, meditation routines etc.

These 5 basic body types were termed Fire, Water, Metal, Earth and Wood and the first step in establishing an effective weight loss program from a Chinese Medicine perspective would be to know which of these types you fall into.

Fire types – Are normally short, the jolly, always laughing and joking type, often have a reddish tinge to the face, walk fast and are generous in nature. This type tends to suffer from heart ailments with a predisposition to conditions involving a high heart rate, this is due to either liver or heart fire. Fire types are also sentenced to gout issues but overall tend to have good health. If a fire type is overweight it is not as serious as the other types but the most common reason would be an increased metabolism and resultant high appetite combined with an unhealthy diet, viz, cold drinks, overly rich and sweet foods, carbs etc. This leads to a combination of what we call in Chinese Medicine spleen vacuity and stomach heat / fire. For fire types the treatment focus is on strengthening the spleen (or digestive) function and reducing heat in order to control appetite.

Water types – Water types have the most difficulty with weight issues because as the name implies they tend to accumulate water. This arises due to a weakness of the kidney function in metabolising water which then results in the deposition of water through the body in the form of what we call damp accumulation in Chinese Medicine. A water type is identified as having a generalized weight problem often with swelling of the ankles, generally they tend to have low stamina, are timid and sentimental, suffer from salt cravings and often have hearing disorders. The Chinese medicine approach is to use a diet and herbal regimen that eliminate excess dampness and strengthen the body's water metabolism functions, often warm or hot medicinals are used which is in contrast to those used for a fire type constitution.

Metal types – Metal types are the one constitution that are not to gain gain, being people who are well organized, almost perfectionist in nature, they do however tend to develop skin and lung conditions if not well such as psoriasis, asthma etc. In such a person weight gain is a poor sign and if sudden can often mean a cancer growth rather than true weight gain.

Earth types – Earth types are usually the chubby type, always had a little extra around the waist types, usually cheerful and careful though can be obsesses if there is an associated phlegmatic condition, they typically crave sweets and chocolates and are given to diabetes. They also often have a yellowish complexion. The treatment in this case is to strengthen the digestive organisms with herbs and also going on a bland diet.

Wood types- Wood types are normally muscular and sinewy in nature and if they are afflicted with weight gain it is often more serious than for any other type. Wood types are typically angry, impatient, idealistic workaholics and often suffer from hypertension, eye disorders, headaches, neck and shoulder tension and rheumatism. For cases of obesity in wood types the treatment is address stagnation as it is thought that weight loss in such cases is due to an accumulation of qi which due to stress especially is not flowing properly causing the accumulation of qi and in turn other substances such as damp and phlegm to build up. Often wood types will only develop weight gain around the waist.

As you can see from the above, we are not all the same and no single weight loss program or diet or supplement is going to work for every person every time. Rather, obesity, from a Chinese Medicine perspective has to be treated individually based on both persons constitutional body type as well as the presenting pattern which I will describe more about in the next article in this series.

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Overcoming Obesity With A Wellness Lifestyle

A wellness approach to obesity is to promote wellness lifestyles, particularly the mental and meaning & purpose skill areas, while medically treating the disease of obesity. In the last decade, there has been an unprecended 60 percent increase in the number of overweight Americans. Lifestyle quality sufferers illegally because of it and each year, 300,000 citizens die of causes related to obesity. (Obesity is defined as 30 percent above ideal body weight! Imagine that – 30 percent! How many more are “only” 25 percent over ideal? I'm guessing that even ten percent over ideal is not so healthy!)

Many health experts are urging initiatives to deal with this epidemic including:

* Weight counseling by doctors in all medical practices.

* Healthy food choices in workplace cafeterias.

* Opportunities for employees to exercise during the day.

* Retooled physical education programs in schools that inspire kids to make fitness a lifetime habit.

* More policies by urban decision makers to design alternatives to cars, such as bike paths.

* Less TV – parents should send kids outdoors to play more often. At first blush, these strategies seem wise and long overdue. Who could object? Certainly not a wellness promoter, such as yours truly. And yet, I do! Why?

Because it's all too little, too late!

Take another look at these statistics. This is not an epidemic – it's a thermonuclear catastrophe! A little counseling here, some better food choices there, a bit of retooling, a few bike paths and less TV– these are band-aid stopgaps of little consequence to the severed sections of obesity-related problems.

It's simply astonishing that the president and the Congress are not doing more to address this crisis. This crisis is more consequential than Iraq, the “road map” to now, drug benefits for Medicare recipients and what Hillary thinks of Bill all put together. The president and Congress are simply ignoring foundation remedies for a horrendous national disaster. Why? Because they think, possibly correctly, that people do not want to hear the truth – that they are fat, reckless, lazy and foolish for getting them into this fix!

Since I'm not a mayor or the president or otherwise in a situation where I am dependent on campaign contributions from the dairy, sugar or beef industries, let me acknowledge what the politicians will not: Vastly more citizens must take greater responsibility for their health or we will soon be taken over by immigrants seeking to eat like Americans.

Our national obesity disaster and the health care crises are directly tied to it and are largely self-infested problems! Wake up and shape up, America – it's your patriotic duty not to be an unnecessary burden on the economy. Tomorrowmore, if you do the right thing for America, I believe you will be happier and more effective. So, to paraphrase a memorable summons to sacrifice for a larger purpose, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask if you are willing to do the right thing for your country, namely, exercise more and eat less or at least more wisely. ”

What do you think? Am I being too hard on my beloved fellow and sister Americans?

In any case, do look on the bright side and be well.

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Beer Gut Breakthrough

“It's finally out of the way,” announced the paunchy guy with the white hair.

“What's out of your way?” I asked. “Your attitude?”

“Nah,” he replied. “My gut finally shifted out of the way and now I can keep my leg straight and touch my foot.”

This is was a breakthrough, considering the guy had trouble just seeing his feet, let alone touching them. We had been working hard at leaving out that personal beer keg of his. While he was farm boy strong, he had a heck of a time with flexibility, any kind of endurance and movement.

That is until he got some control of his breathing.

He was often inhaling and exhaling at the wrong time and holding his breath and panting and gasping like a old steam engine. We finally got him to exhale deeply while performing abdominal crunches. Then with Hindu Squats. Then other exercises.

Part of the problem was that his paunch was pushing against his lungs, especially while on his back. This crowding of his lungs, made it difficult for him to breath or concentrate on what he was doing. He jokingly bragged about his “45 pound handicap.”

The trick was trying to get him to breath with a gut that was smothering him. When we tried different angles, like kneeling, on his stomach, on his side, in the plank position and standing (yes, standing) and really, really focused on his breathing, he finally felt a “shift” inside of his rib cage.

WHEN VERY OVERWEIGHT PEOPLE LIE ON THEIR BACKS, THEY HAVE DIFFICULTY BREATHING.

You see, many peoples' stomachs get bloated from lack of exercise, slouching at a desk, eating junk and guzzling massive amounts of beer. Not only is there a layer of (cutaneous) fat just under the belly skin, but also (visceral) fat amongst the internal organs. The weight of the internal fat and a weak stomach wall lets the internal organs sag below the rib cage. When the gut sags, so does the person's energy.

The problem with many fitness programs is that they try to flatten a bulging belly with a one-size-fits-all approach of “burning more calories” and lots of cardio exercise. They almost always skip body alignment and the essential breathing techniques. So, the pot-bellied client often gets spindly arms and legs, lower back pain and still has a large, protruding belly.

With the deep breathing technique, my client was able to touch the foot of his extended leg. His agility has also improved to where he can almost stand up from sitting cross-legged without the use of his hands. Instead of being breathless after exercising, he calmed his breath in less than a minute.

He literally breathed his way to greater strength, flexibility and a flatter stomach. The trick is using the complete breath with full (and I mean full) exhalations with your exercises.

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