The goal of obesity treatment is to reach and stay at a healthy weight. All weight-loss programs require changes in your eating habits and increased physical activity. The treatment methods that are right for you depend on your level of obesity, your overall health and your willingness to participate in your weight-loss plan. Reducing calories and practicing healthier eating habits are vital to overcoming obesity.
The Mayo Clinic advises obese people to reduce their total daily calorie intake and to consume more fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Try to find activities which you can fit into your daily routine. Anything that becomes part of your daily life, weaved into your existing lifestyle, is more likely to become a long-term habit. If you use an elevator, try getting off one or two floors before your destination and walking the rest. You could try the same when driving your car or taking any form of public transport – get off earlier and walk that bit more.
Prescription medications should really only be considered as a last resort. If the patient finds it extremely hard to shed the pounds, or if his obesity has reached such a point as to significantly undermine his health, then prescription drugs may become an option.
Keep in mind, though, that weight-loss medication is meant to be used along with diet, exercise and behavior changes, not instead of them. If you don’t make these other changes in your life, medication is unlikely to work.
There are two types of bariatric surgeries:
- Restrictive procedures – These make your stomach smaller. The surgeon may use a gastric band, staples, or both. After the operation the patient cannot consume more than about one cup of food during each sitting, significantly reducing his food intake. Over time, some patients’ stomachs may stretch and they are gradually able to consumer larger quantities.
- Malabsorptive procedures – Parts of the digestive system, especially the first part of the small intestine (duodenum) or the mid-section (jejunum), are bypassed. Doctors may also reduce the size of the stomach. This procedure is generally more effective than restrictive procedures. However, the patient has a higher risk of experiencing vitamin/mineral deficiencies because overall absorption is reduced.
Vagal nerve blockade is another treatment for obesity. It involves implanting a device under the skin of the abdomen that sends intermittent electrical pulses to the abdominal vagus nerve, which tells the brain when the stomach feels empty or full. This new technology received FDA approval in 2014 for use by adults who have not been able to lose weight with a weight-loss program and who have a BMI of 35 to 45 with at least one obesity-related condition, such as type 2 diabetes.
Acupuncture can help with weight loss by regulating hormone production, improving the metabolism, optimizing digestion, reducing inflammation, suppressing the appetite, lessening water retention and optimizing other bodily functions that are related to obesity and weight loss. Leptin and ghrelin are the hunger hormones in the body; ghrelin tells the body that it is hungry, while leptin tells the body that it is full. Acupuncture can manipulate the levels of these hormones to reduce your appetite and curb your overeating and snacking habits.
Using stomach and kidney acupuncture points, it is possible to improve the functioning of the digestive system, and even increase the amount of nutrients that are taken in by the body. By preventing slow digestion and improving gut health, you can relieve constipation, bloating and other gastrointestinal issues that may keep your sedentary or lead to fat deposition.
By stimulating the nerves of the kidney and endocrine system, it is possible to stop water retention in the body. This is a very quick way to lose some weight, and help to keep it off, by preventing your body from storing more water than it needs.