Weight loss is a $60 billion industry in the United States, with consumers spending their money on everything from gym memberships to weight loss programs to diet drinks and foods. Approximately 69% of adults are considered to be overweight or obese, as well as about one-third of children and adolescents ages 6-19.
Excess weight has become a global epidemic contributing to a multitude of health issues like type 2 diabetes, cancer, congestive heart failure, depression, gout, and stroke, to name just a few.
Being overweight can also contribute to back pain and other spinal and structural issues due to the demands excess weight puts on the low back, hips, knees, ankles, and feet. Chiropractic adjustments remove the interference in the nervous system and allow the body’s innate ability to heal itself, which is especially helpful when someone is focused on weight loss and learning to live a healthier lifestyle.
Chiropractors not only provide care for your spine and nervous system, but also promote health, wellness, balance, and active lifestyles and provide patients with strategies to improve all aspects of their lives, including weight loss without drugs and their side effects, or invasive surgery.
If you are considering making healthy changes in your life, losing weight, improving your overall health and wellness, and would like to talk with a weight loss coach who is most concerned with helping you learn how to make the changes necessary to feel more comfortable in your body and life, contact us online at our Fort Collins office or call us at 970.377.3557 to learn more about how we can help.
Indicators and Causes
The most common measurement for diagnosing overweight and obesity is BMI, or Body Mass Index. A variety of tools can be used to determine the BMI, which can then be found on a chart placing the BMI in a range from normal to overweight to obese to extreme obesity. The waist circumference measurement is used to determine the increased risk of developing diseases like coronary heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. This visceral fat, which builds up around the internal organs and causes inflammation, greatly increases the risk of developing deadly diseases. Other signs that may indicate someone has excess fat and may want to consider weight loss are:
- back and joint pain
- tight-feeling clothes
- increased weight on the scale
- problems sleeping (snoring, sleep apnea)
- difficulty breathing when walking, climbing stairs, or exercising
- increased sweating
What has caused this global epidemic? Many factors may contribute, but there are several major reasons humans have become increasingly unhealthier. Processed foods have been engineered to be long-lasting, cheap, and full of sugars and chemicals to make them “hyperpalatable” so we constantly crave more and more. In the 1980s, low-fat and fat-free food became the rage, and in the misinformation frenzy, ended up vilifying healthy fats necessary to appropriate brain and body function and increasing our exposure to added sugars such as high fructose corn syrup. Metabolic Syndrome caused by insulin and leptin resistance, largely due to the massive amounts of carbohydrates in modern diets, have also had an enormous impact on the declining health of our society. When you combine processed and supersized food, insufficient exercise, uncontrolled stress, inadequate sleep, and a general vitamin D deficiency due to the general lack of sunshine, is it really any surprise we’ve gotten weaker and sicker?
Weight Loss Options
Chiropractic takes a holistic approach to weight loss, with an emphasis on the mind-body-social connection in the overall definition of health: optimal physical, mental, and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity (Dorland’s Medical Dictionary, p.1898). Not only will our Chiropractor advise and give recommendations for chiropractic care, dietary changes, exercise plans, and positive lifestyle changes, but will also provide what is the most important, and often missing, part of the weight loss plan – support of the patient through counseling. Our Chiropractor and Wellness Coaches guide our weight loss patients through the program, helping them understand what led them to the weight gain in the first place, offering support through the inevitable struggles that occur while making significant lifestyle changes, and encouraging patients to take advantage of the opportunity to participate in a group designed to help each other by sharing challenges, successes, and ideas, and provide them a sense of community. All of these elements combine to ensure the patient has the tools, motivation, commitment, and support to facilitate healthy weight loss and then keep the weight off once the goal is met.
Ketogenic Diet Plan
One of the most successful weight loss plans used by our office utilizes a ketogenic diet plan, characterized by moderate amounts of protein, low net carbohydrates, and healthy fats. This protocol encourages and trains the body to live off its own fat reserves instead of continuously feeding it carbs and sugars as its sources of energy. While burning fat, however, the body must have steady, moderate amounts of high quality proteins to protect muscle mass while weight loss occurs for which there are guidelines easily followed. Also built into this protocol are supplements to replace those normally found in restricted foods.
Paleo Diet Plan
Another plan encouraged and supported by the Chiropractor is a Paleolithic lifestyle. Thousands of years ago, humans ate primarily vegetables, roots, nuts, seeds, meat, fish, and fruit. They also moved an extraordinary amount during their hunting and gathering. Paleo living avoids processed foods, sugar, pasteurized dairy, grains, legumes, and alcohol, and encourages more consistent motion, lifting, and short bursts of high-intensity activity during the day with far less sedentary hours to which modern society is accustomed.
Coupled with the appropriate lifestyle plan for an individual is a chiropractic care plan. By removing subluxations, the misalignment of a spinal bone that causes nerve pressure and interference in the function of the nervous system, all cells, tissues, organs, and systems of the body are able to function to the best of their ability. Just as chiropractic adjustments boost the immune system by relieving nerve interference, they have shown a boosting effect on metabolism as well, allowing it to be kick started during the weight loss program. Receiving regular chiropractic adjustments, maintaining a balanced diet, and implementing moderate exercise all help give people the proper support they need to efficiently and successfully manage a weight loss plan and maintain a healthy body and life.
Please contact Heart & Hand Chiropractic to find out how we can help you in your quest for optimal health. Contact our Fort Collins office today at 970.377.3557, or e-mail us online, to schedule a complimentary health screening.