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Obesity, the most common metabolic disorder in humans, requires both a sociological and medical definition. Sociologically, obesity is fatness beyond culturally accepted norms.

Medically, obesity is the excessive buildup of adipose tissue such that mental and/or physical health are endangered. This occurs when the person is approximately 20% greater than the ideal weight.

Obesity should be distinguished from the term overweight which is considered weight gain due to any means which is conducive to poor health.

Obesity is common in affluent countries due to increased availability of food and decreased physical activity. Furthermore, obesity varies with individuals of different age, height, build and sex according to food requirements.

The daily caloric need for an average man is about 2,500 calories and for a woman 2,000 calories. Persons whose jobs require physical exertion may require a daily calorie intake of 4,000 calories. If a person eats more than needed for the amount of energy expended, the surplus will be stored as fat. If this becomes deleterious to the person's health, becomes excessive, or becomes unsightly, the person is considered obese.

Obesity predisposes an individual to many disorders. Complications include:

Hypertension Childbirth problems
Problems with surgical procedures Death from stroke
Coronary heart disease Diabetes mellitus
Kidney disease Gallbladder disorders

The more overweight the individual, the more predisposed that person is to these conditions. Treatment may include a safe diet and exercise. "Crash" diets are not generally beneficial, are often dangerous, and tend to keep the weight off only temporarily. In severe cases psychological treatment and/or surgery may be required.


Primary Factors
Obesity results from an imbalance between the amount of food eaten and the energy expended. This excess energy does not get metabolized, and is subsequently stored in the body as fat.

Predisposing Factors
Excessive lipid deposition
Hypothalamic and central nervous system disorders such as:
Excessive stimulation of appetite center
Frohlich's syndrome
Adipose cell hyperplasia
Increased lipoprotein lipase activity
Decreased lipid metabolism:
Decreased lipolytic hormones
Defective adipose cell lipolyses
Abnormality in autoimmune innervation
Decreased lipid utilization:
Defective oxidation of fats
Defective thermogenesis

Other factors

Genetic predisposition
Endocrine and metabolic factors associated with Cushing's syndrome
Diabetes mellitus
Cultural environment

Signs & Symptoms

Weight increase
Poor ability to exercise
Increased cardiac workload
Easily tired
Emotional problems

Nutritional Supplements

Structure & Function: Weight Management

General Supplements

  Adult Child/Adolescent
Copper 1 - 5 mg 1 - 5 mg
Fiber 5 gms
Phenylalanine 500 - 1,000 mg 500 - 1,000 mg
Vitamin C 1,000 - 3,000 mg 1,000 - 3,000 mg
Zinc 10 - 50 mg 10 - 50 mg

* Please refer to the respective topic for specific nutrient amounts.


Fiber supplements (5 gms per serving) e.g. glucomannan or guar gum.

Note: All amounts are in addition to those supplements having a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). Due to individual needs, one must always be aware of a possible undetermined effect when taking nutritional supplements. If any disturbances from the use of a particular supplement should occur, stop its use immediately and seek the care of a qualified health care professional.


Dietary Considerations

The obese individual may have other underlying or weight-related disorders such as gallbladder disease, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus.

These conditions should be considered when developing a weight reduction plan. Barring any contraindications, a Weight Reduction Diet may be used to shed pounds sensibly. The following points should be remembered when attempting to lose weight:

1. Losing weight is going to be a difficult process, involving a change in eating habits and lifestyle.

2. As weight is lost through caloric restriction, the body senses it is in a starvation situation, and conserves its stores of energy by metabolizing them more efficiently.

3. People experience rapid weight loss at the start of a diet, and hit a plateau where pounds are shed slower. It is at this point individuals become discouraged and revert to their previous eating behaviors.

4. Weight lost is regained.

5. Behavior modification is essential for long-term success in dieting.

6. Exercise must be a part of any weight loss program. This exercise should be according to an individual's capabilities, lifestyle and physical condition.

7. Self-help groups, such as Weight-Watchers or TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly), may be helpful for a dieter who needs encouragement.

8. Fad diets should be avoided. Many are nutritionally inadequate or monotonous.

Homeopathic Remedy

1.* Ammonium muriaticum - 30C long term
2. Capsicum annuum - 6C long term
3.* Graphites - 30C
4.* Calcarea carbonica - 30C long term

Treatment Schedule

Doses cited are to be administered on a 3X daily schedule, unless otherwise indicated. Dose usually continued for 2 weeks. Liquid preparations usually use 8-10 drops per dose. Solid preps are usually 3 pellets per dose. Children use 1/2 dose.


X = 1 to 10 dilution - weak (triturition)
C = 1 to 100 dilution - weak (potency)
M = 1 to 1 million dilution (very strong)
X or C underlined means it is most useful potency

Asterisk (*) = Primary remedy. Means most necessary remedy. There may be more than one remedy - if so, use all of them.


Boericke, D.E., 1988. Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Coulter, C.R., 1986. Portraits of Homeopathic Medicines.

Kent, J.T., 1989. Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Koehler, G., 1989. Handbook of Homeopathy.

Shingale, J.N., 1992. Bedside Prescriber.

Smith, Trevor, 1989. Homeopathic Medicine.

Ullman, Dana, 1991. The One Minute (or so) Healer.

Herbal Approaches


Ephedra (Ma Huang)
Garcinia cambogia

Note: The misdirected use of an herb can produce severely adverse effects, especially in combination with prescription drugs. This Herbal information is for educational purposes and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice.


Aromatherapy - Essential Oils


Fennel Essence, Grapefruit Essence,
Juniper Essence, Lemon Essence,
Patchouli Essence, Petitgrain Essence.


Related Health Conditions

Coronary heart disease
Cushing's syndrome
Diabetes mellitus
Frohlich's syndrome
Gallbladder disorders
Kidney disorders
Thyroid disorders



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