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Article: Obesity | Obesity Treatment | Fat Burning Medicine

Obesity & Ayurvedic Home Remedies

Author: Dr. Veena
How to overcome obesity has become a major problem today. We cannot ignore the problem of obesity as it leads to many diseases like high blood pressure, knee joint pain, and heart problems. Everyone wants to remain slim, and it is important to know how one can burn fat naturally. Overweight and obesity are the fifth leading risk factors for global deaths. The severity of obesity can be quantified using BMI. For women, a waist circumference of >88 cm, and for men, a waist circumference of >102 cm means that the risk of metabolic and cardiovascular complications of obesity is higher.

Causes:

Overeating, lack of physical exercise, excessive intake of alcohol, leptin deficiency (leptin is a hormone produced mainly by adipocytes (fat cells) that is involved in the regulation of body fat. Leptin interacts with areas of the brain that control hunger), excessive eating of junk food, excessive intake of high-calorie/fat/sugar-rich diet, and genetics. Recent research shows that in some cases, certain genetic factors may cause changes in appetite and fat metabolism, leading to obesity.

Weight depends on calorie intake and energy expenditure. If a person eats more calories than he/she burns, then he/she will gain weight. If a person eats fewer calories than he/she burns, then he/she will lose weight. Susceptibility to obesity and its adverse consequences undoubtedly varies between individuals.

Potentially Reversible Causes of Weight Gain:

Hypothyroidism, Cushing’s syndrome, hypothalamic tumors or injury, insulinoma.

Drug Treatment:

Tricyclic antidepressants, corticosteroids, β blockers, and estrogen-containing contraceptive pills.

Complications of Obesity:

Hypertension, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, varicose veins, polycystic ovary syndrome, depression, gallstones, and skin infections.

Herbs to Treat Obesity:

Alfalfa, corn silk, dandelion, gravel root, horsetail, hydrangea, hyssop, juniper berries, oat straw, parsley, sea wrack, thyme, uva ursi, and yarrow can be used in tea form for their diuretic properties.

Triphala: Triphala has been studied for its antioxidant, anti-diabetic, and anti-obesity effects. Amalaki (Phyllanthus emblica) is effective for reducing cardiac problems, diabetes, and oxidative stress. This plant also shows significant anti-hyperlipidemic, hypolipidemic, and anti-atherogenic effects, and it shows significant reduction in triglycerides, free fatty acids, and total cholesterol. It maintains good lipid profiles in experimental animals. Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) is a lipid-lowering agent. Bibhitaki (Terminalia bellerica) shows mechanisms that probably involve the suppression of the absorption of meal-derived lipids mediated by gallic acid.

Ref: Dr. Supriya Bhalerao, Scientist (Obesity Programme), Interactive Research School for Health Affairs (IRSHA). Megha Salunke, Ph.D. Student, Interactive Research School for Health Affairs (IRSHA).

Other Herbs:

  • Dandelion helps the body metabolize carbohydrates faster.
  • Curry leaves help increase the rate of metabolism, which in turn helps burn extra fat.
  • Alfalfa can be used to reduce fat as it acts as a diuretic and helps enhance digestion.
  • Bitter Orange (Synephrine) is the primary active alkaloid of bitter orange. It stimulates the adrenal gland and helps burn fat.
  • Recent studies show that Garcinia cambogia melts fat. It contains a chemical called Hydroxycitric acid (HCA), similar to the citric acid present in lemons and limes.
  • Indian Bedellium (Guggulu) – In Ayurveda, Guggulu (Commiphora mukul) has a "karshan" property, helping to reduce fat.

Natural Home Remedies:

  • Drink 2 to 3 cups of green tea every day. Studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that people who consume 5 cups of green tea daily burn an average of 5% more fat than those who do not drink any green tea.
  • Vitamin C is useful for burning fat. Eat fruits like lemon, bitter orange, tomatoes, and sweet lime.
  • Eat almonds, avocados, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, and olive oil.
  • Take lime juice with honey daily.
  • Cardamom is known as a thermogenic and helps burn fat.
  • Include broccoli, carrots, beans, and sweet potatoes in your daily diet.
  • Eat one apple daily. The enzyme pectin present in apples can help reduce the absorption of fats through the cells.
  • Garlic (Allium sativum) contains allicin, which helps reduce cholesterol and is therefore useful in treating obesity.
  • Include jawar and ragi in your diet.
  • Include salads, beans, and dry cereals in your diet.
  • For breakfast, take a high-fiber diet, preferably cereals with skimmed milk and fruits.
  • Drink ginger (Zingiber officinale) tea as it helps burn fat.
  • Add one teaspoon of Triphala (a combination of chebulic myrobalan, belliric myrobalan, and Indian gooseberry) powder to a cup of water. Boil it until it is reduced by half and take it with honey.

Ayurvedic Medicine:

Triphala Guggulu and Medohar Guggulu are advisable. Take these with the consultation of an Ayurvedic physician.

Panchakarma:

Panchakarma therapy is also advisable, but this therapy should be taken at an authentic Ayurvedic Panchakarma center.

Though I have mentioned the quantity of ingredients in some natural home remedies, it is advisable to take the specific quantities with the consultation of an Ayurvedic physician.