Weight Management Motorize Your Metabolism

We close this chapter on imbalances with perhaps our country's greatest health challenge: weight management. We look in a mirror, step on a scale, or put on our bathing suit, and what runs through our minds? Too fat! Too thin! Body imaging is a large-scale issue in this country and goes well beyond the scope of this chapter.

Weight management is at a crisis level in our country. It is estimated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that one-third of Americans are 20 percent or more overweight, which qualifies them as being obese. National surveys show that 25-50 percent of adults are on diets and spend about $30 billion each year on them. Unfortunately, a lot of that money goes to waste without the proper lifestyle changes. Two-thirds of those who lose weight will gain it back during the next three to five years. The average human body has 30-40 billion fat cells, which are genetically geared for helping you store unused calories. It's simple: Use those calories, or they go into storage ... visible storage!

Wise Words

A woman's body is designed to store fat for pregnancy and nursing during famine. Fat can make up to 25 percent of a healthy woman's body weight and 17 percent of a man's.

Wise Words

A woman's body is designed to store fat for pregnancy and nursing during famine. Fat can make up to 25 percent of a healthy woman's body weight and 17 percent of a man's.

Wise Words

Obesity is defined as being 20 percent over normal body weight for your age, sex, and height. Common causes of obesity include

V Poor diet and eating habits.

V Lack of consistent vigorous exercise.

V Glandular malfunction.

V Diabetes.

V Hypoglycemia.

V Emotional stress.

V Boredom.

Acu-Points for Better Digestion and Food Cravings

I always make it clear to patients that while acupuncture can be good for improving your metabolism, it is no substitution for proper nutrition and exercise. Let's make that clear up front.

The responsible way to use acu-points is to jump-start your digestion if it's sluggish, and then back off the treatments once you've created a lifestyle that leads you to your ideal weight. First off, I recommend throwing away the scale, ignoring clothing sizes, and going by your energy level, endurance, and how your clothes fit. Scales are a poor measure of success and, in my opinion, lead to premature disappointment and frustration.

Improving digestion.

Locate the stomach point on your ear, which is in the middle of the ear on the horizontal raised ridge called the crus of the helix. Squeeze the point with your finger on the point and your thumb behind for support. You may also use your fingernail, as shown in the previous figure, for greater stimulation, but be careful not to press too hard and break the skin. Squeeze the point to curb your appetite or help you resist a food craving. Squeeze for one to two minutes, breathing deeply. Repeat three to five times per session.

I can tell the times I've been into exercising by the number of machines, bars, racks, and widgets that are collecting dust in my basement. All good intentions, all good money, all good things come to an end. I never found what I liked until my wife and I began mountain biking and spinning last year. We enjoy it, and we're able to do it together and make it a part of our lives. We're not perfect, but we feel a lot better. You may not lose as much weight, but you'll replace fat with muscle, and the way your clothes fit will reflect your progress.

It makes sense to get the numbers working in your favor. The New England Journal of Medicine studied 34 formerly obese women who lost an average of 25 pounds. Moderate to sedentary women in one year gained back from 14 to 20 pounds. They also found a surprising exercise level necessary to loose weight, long term. The women who kept the weight off averaged 80 minutes per day of moderate activity, such as brisk walking, or 35 minutes per day of vigorous activity, such as aerobics or fast cycling.

Oriental Medical philosophy has long been a proponent for healthy eating, exercise, and calming and centering the mind. The conditions we've just covered can all be frustrating and challenging, so bring in the help as early as you can and take back control of your health. We're getting ready to begin the last part of the book, "The Home Stretch." Keep on reading to find the answers to the important questions you may have on how to get started. See you there.

Timing is everything! A 30-40 minute vigorous workout in the morning can keep your metabolism churning throughout most of the day. Evening workouts may be more convenient, but going to bed shuts down most of the effect.

The New Truth About Exercise

Get the Point

Frowns can tip the scales against you. The September 1998 issue of Annals of Behavior Medicine found that those who were unhappy with their bodies had the least success losing weight.

Wise Words

Frowns can tip the scales against you. The September 1998 issue of Annals of Behavior Medicine found that those who were unhappy with their bodies had the least success losing weight.

The Least You Need to Know

> There are about 80 different sleep disorders, affecting approximately 70 million Americans.

>- Acupuncture and acupressure can effectively treat many types of sleep problems.

>- Oriental Medicine, including acupressure, brings much-needed circulation to sufferers of Raynaud's Phenomenon.

>- Acu-points can curb food cravings and power your metabolism for better weight management.

> Eighty minutes of moderate exercise or 35 minutes of vigorous exercise daily are needed to keep the weight off.

The Complete Compendium Of Everything Related To Health And Wellness

The Complete Compendium Of Everything Related To Health And Wellness

A lot of us run through the day with so many responsibilities that we don't have even an instant to treat ourselves. Coping with deadlines at work, attending to the kids, replying to that demanding client we respond and react to the needs of other people. It's time to do a few merciful things to reward yourself and get your health in order.

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