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Obesity

Obesity
 

     The U.S. Center for Disease Control has said that obesity is on the rise, with over 1/3 of Americans being obese. Americans today are fatter, more stressed out, and no more likely to get regular exercise than we were ten years ago. And yet, national surveys have shown that at any given time 25-50% of Americans are on some sort of diet (please see diet scams) and we spend more than 30 billion dollars each year on diet aids and remedies. It is estimated that 2/3 of people regain their lost weight within 3-5 years. Anyone who is over 20% over the normal weight for his/her age, sex, build, and height is considered obese. Perhaps more important is the percentage of fat in the body. For women, fat can account for as much as 25% of body weight, while 17% is a healthy percentage for men. Women’s bodies are designed to carry a higher proportion of fat tissue to ensure there is plenty of fuel for pregnancy and nursing, even if food is scarce.
 

     The average human body has 30-40 million fat cells. Most of the extra calories we eat that we do not need for immediate energy is stored as fat. If we were still "hunter/gatherers" like our early ancestors, the fat would provide a needed food store for times when no food is readily available. But, in modern society, storing energy as fat is no longer necessary for most people. So, instead of being of being a valuable survival mechanism, the body’s ability to store fat has profound negative effects on the body. As fat accumulates, it crowds the already tight space occupied by internal organs. Obesity increases the body’s resistance to insulin and susceptibility to infection, and puts one at a much higher risk for developing coronary artery disease, diabetes, gallbladder disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, stroke, and other serious health problems that can result in premature death. Complications of pregnancy and liver damage are also more common in overweight individuals.

The most common causes of obesity are lack of exercise and a poor diet. Other factors that can lead to obesity: diabetes, glandular malfunctions, hypoglycemia, emotional stress, boredom, and a simple love of food. Ironically, poor nutrition may be a major factor in obesity. When a steady supply of vital nutrients are not absorbed, fat is not easily or adequately burned and can accumulate in the body. In addition, toxins, excess salts and acids your body cannot use are stored in the tissues and cause water retention.
 
      The best way to lose weight, and virtually the only way to maintain weight loss, is to adopt a healthier, more active, lifestyle, a lifestyle that includes a healthy diet and regular exercise. This will give you more energy and lower your risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer while allowing you to lose weight.
 
     According to the American Dietetic Association, "Scientific data suggests a positive relationship relationship between a vegetarian diet and reduced risk for obesity." - Journal of the American Dietetic Association 97 (1997), p. 1317-1321
 

Recommendations:

  • We suggest a high quality whole food supplement, like VITAFORCE™ that is complete and made from whole foods.  This provides organic whole food nutrients which will supply the body with a rich assortment of nutrients necessary to ease cravings and lose weight. For example, Vitamin C has been shown to help people significantly reduce weight. Nutritional Health, 4(1), 1985, p. 25-28
  • We also suggest Digestion Enhancement Enzymes which aids the in the digestion of food and absorption of nutrients.
  • Do not worry so much about the number calories you consume as about eating the proper foods. Try to eat a minimum of 50% raw foods using vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers, green beans, kale, lettuce, onions, radishes, spinach, and turnips.
  • Consume high quantities of the following fruits, apples, cantaloupe, grapefruit, strawberries, and watermelon. Eat more complex carbohydrates that also offer protein such as whole grains, legumes, tofu, lentils, plain baked potatoes (no toppings), sesame seeds, beans, brown rice.
  • Eat the following foods in moderation, bananas, cherries, corn, figs, grapes, green peas, pears, pineapple, sweet potatoes, and yams.
  • Drink plenty of fresh "live" juices. Juices are full of concentrated nutrients that are easily absorbed and have almost zero calories and fat. This is a great way to speed up the metabolism, because fresh juices are very rich in metabolic enzymes.
  • Drink 6-8 glasses of distilled water per day. It is common to confuse food cravings with dehydration. When you are hungry, try drinking a glass of water and wait ten minutes to see if the craving passes.
  • Consume small amounts of organic, cold-pressed Flaxseed oil; this provides essential fatty acids which are important in losing weight.
  • Try to eat 4-6 small meals per day. This will speed up the metabolism and avoid the excess storage of fat.
  • Drink wheatgrass to calm the appetite as this is a very nutritious fuel from a whole food that assists metabolic functions; kelp is also beneficial.
  • Be active; take a brisk walk every day before breakfast and/or dinner to burn off fat. Walk or ride a bicycle instead of driving whenever possible. Also, be sure to get regular aerobic exercise such as walking, running, bicycling or swimming and do stretching and flexibility exercises such as yoga. This is the best way to rid the body of fat and maintain muscle tone. Water aerobics are excellent for those that are overweight and who find running or walking difficult. A person who increases muscle will have a higher metabolic rate than a person of the same weight with a lower muscle to fat ratio, this is because it takes more calories to maintain muscle tissue than fat tissue.
  • Make your main meal lunch, not dinner and your last meal should be no later than 6 p.m.

Things to Avoid:

  • Eliminate saturated fats from the diet. Never consume animal fat found in butter, cream, gravies, ice cream, mayonnaise, all meats (red meat/chicken/turkey/lamb etc...)and fish, milk, eggs, cheese, etc. Do not any fried, processed or junk foods.
  • Do not eat any white flour products, salt, or white rice.
  • Do not consume sweets such as soda, pastries, pies, cakes, donuts or candy. Omit all forms of refined sugar including white sugar, brown sugar, and corn syrup from the diet. Sugar triggers the release of insulin which then activates enzymes that promote the passage of fat from the blood stream into the fat cells. The American Cancer Society has found that people who regularly use artificial sweeteners, (Equal, Sweet ‘N Low, NutraSweet) tend to gain, not lose weight. These substances seem to increase the appetite and slow down the digestive process. Use organic barley malt sweetener instead of sugar, this is also beneficial for people with diabetes or hypoglycemia.
  • Do not consume alcohol in any form, including beer and wine. Alcohol inhibits the burning of fat from fat deposits.
  • Do not grocery shop on an empty stomach as you will be tempted to buy forbidden foods and will often buy more food than you need. Do not chew gum as it starts the digestive juices flowing and makes you hungry.
  • Completely avoid gimmicky snack foods that promise zero fat but are filled with chemicals, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives. Although these foods may seem to have no fat, the unnatural ingredients will disrupt body chemistry and hamper any attempts at weight loss.

References:

1) James F. Balch, M.D, Phyllis A. Balch, C.N.C, "Prescription for Nutritional Healing," (1997)

2) G.J. Naylor, et al., "A Double Blind Placebo Controlled Trial of Ascorbic Acid in Obesity," Nutritional Health, 4(1), 1985, p. 25-28
3) "Position of American Dietetic Association on Vegetarian Diets," Journal of the American Dietetic Association 97 (1997), p. 1317-1321