Weight Loss Chicago

Obesity statistics are more staggering than you might imagine. The latest information from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) shows 39.6 percent of Americans are obese. Overall, there are over 100 million obese people in this country. As these numbers continue to climb, they estimate almost half of the world’s adult population will be overweight or obese by 2030. Obesity doesn’t discriminate among demographics: Studies show we have a global epidemic of obesity in all age groups for both developed and developing countries. In 2017, The Guardian reported that there are now 124 million obese children worldwide.

Researchers define obesity as a condition where fat accumulates in the body to become a risk factor or marker for many chronic diseases including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), and cancer, as well as adversely impacting overall health.

While practitioners use other measures to determine whether someone is overweight or obese, body mass index (BMI) is one of the most common. Researchers and scientists define a BMI of 25 to <30 as overweight and BMI ≥ 30 as obese.

Weight Loss Treatment Chicago

Obesity doesn’t occur by itself, but it also paves the way for many physical and psychological problems including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and nearly every other disease on the planet. Research shows obesity is often a major risk factor for development of disease, significant disability, and premature death.

Obesity also comes at a financial cost. Researchers find American health care for obesity-related problems costs about $147 billion annually. In 2014, the global economic impact of obesity was estimated to be an astonishing two trillion dollars!

Healthcare costs aside, obesity also creates lost productivity and missed economic growth because of things like lost work days, lower work productivity, mortality, and permanent disability.

The Conventional Approach to Weight Loss

Obesity presents a real problem, but experts are unsure exactly how to handle this condition. Every year new diet books appear, fad diets or “superfoods” get positioned as “miracle cures” to melt away fat, the government tells us to not eat dietary fat, and gyms become packed with people determined to lose weight once and for all.

And yet, obesity rates continue to skyrocket.

Healthcare practitioners recognize obesity as a chronic illness with vast and potentially deadly consequences, but they seem at a loss about how to treat this condition. A conventional doctor might offer dietary advice including reducing calories, reducing dietary fat, or eating specific foods. He or she might also suggest increasing physical activity.

Many conventional doctors lack the time and knowledge to effectively treat obesity. Seeing a patient for only 10 minutes doesn’t allow much opportunity to educate someone about how to eat healthily. And some doctors are themselves overweight or obese. Our functional medicine doctors at Chicago Natural Health Care practice what we preach, and we ourselves live by the same principles we help our patients with who are trying to lose weight.

Instead, conventional practitioners might suggest a number of over-the-counter or pharmaceutical drugs that address various aspects of weight loss, including suppressing appetite or blocking fat absorption.

As obesity rates continue to climb, pharmaceutical companies will likely develop new drugs that address this epidemic. What these drug companies and conventional healthcare practitioners often neglect to ask is why someone becomes obese to begin with.

The body is a wonderfully complex mechanism, and taking a one-size-fits-all approach focused on calories-in-calories-out, reducing dietary fat, using a drug to address the problem— whatever—overlooks the underlying condition. Overeating might be the reason a patient is obese, but we find something deeper and more complex often creates this condition.

A Functional Medicine Approach to Weight Loss

Using functional medicine, we take a dramatically different approach to obesity. We look at the whole person to determine the underlying reasons you might be overweight. Even if it “runs in your family,” genetics are far from the whole story when it comes to obesity.

Instead, our functional medicine doctors look at metabolic, hormonal, environmental, and other factors that might be keeping you from losing weight. While that sounds complex, the underlying approach for weight loss is really simple.

Give our clinic a call today at 773.418.6877 to schedule your consultation or click the button below.

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