Obesity is becoming an epidemic in India at a very high rate. It is not only a symptom or a disease in itself but is the root cause of various other serious health related problems. Ayurvedic texts have criticized eight categories. Extremely lean and thin persons and obese persons are among these eight categories. In these two also obesity is considered as more harmful. It is the second leading cause of preventable death (after smoking), and is associated with type 2 diabetes, hyperlipidemia, high BP, coronary artery disease, arthritis, gallstones, psychosocial disability and certain types of cancer. The actual definition of obesity varies from person to person. In broad range a person having more than 20% of normal weight in relation to age, height and sex of individual is considered as obese. The easiest method to determine the obesity is to calculate the BMI (body mass index). You can calculate your BMI by the following method -Weight in kg / height in meters. There is a wide range of products available in the market which claims to reduce weight in short duration but beware of such culprits of the society. Reducing the weight in very short duration can also be very harmful. So, successful programs for weight loss reduction and maintenance should be started and followed under the care of a physician and or a nutritionist.
Divide your weight with your height. A normal BMI = 18.5-24.9; Overweight = 25.0-29.9; Obese = 30 or greater; And morbidly obese = 40 or greater. Life style modifications can play a vital role in the management of obesity. Don’t wait for the condition to become worse as by that time it may have given rise to various other morbid diseases. Few guidelines are laid down which can help you in the management of obesity. Go for morning walk daily. Regularly do some breathing exercises like anulom vilom, kapalbhatti and some yogic asana for maintaining yourself in good shape and healthy mind. Dhanurasana, suryanamaskar, matsyendra, ardhmatseyndra, sarvang asana can be beneficial to reduce the weight but do consult the physician if you are having some associated health related problems. Take balanced diet. Eat fresh vegetables and fruits. High fiber diet is good to keep the digestive system in healthy condition. Carrot, pineapple, papaya, apple are some of the effective fruits for keeping you healthy and fit. Take lauki, palak, methi, cabbage, beet in your diet and avoid eating potatoes. Eat green salad containing tomatoes and mint leaves as they are good for burning excessive fat. Drink good amount of water everyday as water is extremely effective in proper functioning of body and also lead to obesity control. Eat proper meals rich in salad and green vegetables and low in fat at regular intervals as compare to heavy meals. Never miss your breakfast as skipping your regular diet is unhealthy habit and leads to obesity. Taking Luke warm water after your regular lunch and dinner as it is effective for proper digestion of food and burning of excessive fat but take it about an hour after meal. Avoid rice, refined flour, and high caloric chocolates. Take green tea or ginger tea as ginger is very good in burning excessive fat in your body. Using vegetable oil like ground oil, sunflower oil is good for cooking purpose. Avoid using excess butter, deep frying the foods and excess salt in your cooking. Live stress free and be more optimistic in your life as tension and stress do not do any good for you, it only create mental and physical troubles in your life like, obesity . If these changes do not work visit your doctor. Certain ayurvedic medications are extremely good to reduce the weight e.g. various guggul preparations, triphala, rasanjan, giloya etc. but these drugs should be taken under the supervision of ayurvedic physician.
• Genetic factor-so if there is a family history of obesity, Beware! You are prone to it. Be very vigilant regarding your life style.
• Hormonal factors- it may be due to disorder of pituitary, thyroid, pancreas, gonads or adrenals.
• Less physical activity- sitting most of the time in front of computer i.e. doing no movements. Lack of exercises can lead to deposition of fat on various tissues which increase the insulin resistance in the body and can lead to type 2 diabetes mellitus.
• More intakes of calories than required
• Unhealthy food or unbalanced diet- enjoying the delicious junk food. Easily available and who has the time to cook.
• Certain medications e.g. steroids.
Don’t be a slave to your taste buds as it can lead you into big troubles. Eat to live not live to eat! Have a control over your senses and be a winner in all the aspects of life.
MD Scholar, Dept of kayachikitsa,
National Institute of Ayurveda,