The negative health effects associated with, not only obesity, but with being overweight or having excess body-fat are now accepted by healthcare professionals of all disciplines.
A very limited list of health conditions associated with obesity includes:
Overweight and obese are defined in terms of your body mass index (BMI) score. “Overweight” is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) value of 25.0-29.9. “Obese” is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) value of 30.0 or higher.
You can calculate your body mass index (BMI) score here.
Potentially more important to health than your body mass index (BMI) score, is your body composition. A short, muscular person may have a high body mass index (BMI) score, but in fact be very healthy.
It is excess “adiposity” (body fat) that adversely affects your health, not simply greater than average weight.
Body composition can be determined by bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA). This is calculated using a quick, painless, simple in-office procedure.
Naturopathic doctors have more training in nutrition and the biochemistry of decreasing body-fat content than “conventional” medical doctors; and more training in understanding the health conditions associated with obesity, and the psychological and social obstacles to successful lifestyle change than dieticians and nutritionists.
As such, naturopathic doctors are in the unique position to be able to create customized weight management programs that include consideration of your co-existing health conditions, unique nutritional requirements, budget, lifestyle and time constraints; and which can eventually become the basis for a healthy lifestyle.
Every patient at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine receives a personalized treatment plan, but a typical approach to creating a weight management program may include:
FirstLine Therapy® is a meal plan and medical food-based weight management program designed to normalize the health effects of cardio-metabolic syndrome (i.e., increased blood-cholesterol, triglyceride and blood sugar levels) by weight loss.
Although developed for the treatment of cardio-metabolic syndrome, FirstLine Therapy® can applied to any setting in which weight loss and improvements in body composition are desired.
A 12-week clinical trial of persons diagnosed as having cardio-metabolic syndrome and hypercholesterolemia demonstrated that participation in a FirstLine Therapy® program resulted in:
After 12-weeks, 43% of study participants health was improved to the point they no longer met the criteria of having cardio-metabolic syndrome.
The benefits of a FirstLine Therapy® program to reduce cholesterol and blood-glucose levels is comparable to those gained using conventional treatments, but without unpleasant side effects.
“Statin” medications used to manage high cholesterol have been found to reduce “bad cholesterol” by greater than 17.3%, but are less effective in reducing weight, blood pressure, triglyceride levels, and do not increase “good” cholesterol levels as effectively. “Statins” have over 73 known side effects, including diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, heartburn, indigestion, abdominal pain, abdominal gas, nasal congestion, headache, back pain, face pain, painful urination, insomnia and decreased libido.
Metformin hydrochloride, commonly used to manage diabetes symptoms, depending on the dosage and frequency of use, will reduce fasting blood-glucose levels by 2.8 to 10.1%, and fasting insulin levels by 29%, but has over 69 side effects, include diarrhea in over 53% of users, and interacts with over 680 other pharmaceuticals.
FirstLine Therapy® has no side effects. However, the side benefits of reduction of cholesterol and blood sugar by weight loss and improved body composition include:
O.H.I.P. does not pay for naturopathic medicine services, but as a government-regulated healthcare profession, services offered by naturopathic doctors, including medical weight loss and FirstLine Therapy® appointments provided at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine are covered by most extended healthcare plans.
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Lipitor side effects [Internet]. Drugs.com; [cited 2015 Apr 2]. Available from: http://www.drugs.com/sfx/lipitor-side-effects.html.
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