Treating obesity: The fight against the pounds

Whether Low Carb, protein diet or Clean Eating – with losing weight it simply does not work out? Especially with obese patients, the pounds often do not want to give way. Nevertheless, overweight does not have to be a constant companion. Because with the right obesity treatment, overweight can be combated.

Obesity treatment: Nutrition is important

If you want to lose weight, you have to consume more energy than you consume. A low-calorie diet supports you in this. However, the fastest way to lose weight is not necessarily the best. After all, the aim of obesity treatment is not a short-term improvement, but long-term success.

A radical diet program recommend therefore only the fewest nutritionists. It is not uncommon for rapid weight loss to be accompanied by undesirable health symptoms. Hair loss, skin irritations, gallstones, dizziness and nausea are particularly frequent.

It is also not advisable to simply get started with obesity therapy. Before starting, it is important to clarify possible risks and side effects in a medical counseling session. Regular check-ups during the diet phase are just as important. Finally the diet change can lead to deficiency symptoms. The patient may have to supplement missing nutrients such as potassium or calcium.

Fighting obesity: the strength lies in movement

In addition to a calorie-reduced diet, fat burning can also be stimulated by exercise. And that doesn't even require registration at the gym. Even small work-outs, cleverly integrated into everyday life, can help. Cycling, fast walking, gardening and climbing stairs, for example, are easy to implement. Of course, the small training units can also be more original. How about, for example, knee bends when washing up or jumping jacks before going to bed? How intensive the training may be depends on the individual fitness level. For beginners: less is more. Already 5 minutes daily are a success. For advanced, 10 to 15 minutes is the right time.

For severely obese patients with a BMI above 35, not every sport can be considered. The ailing joints must be spared. In endurance sports, gentler disciplines such as Nordic walking, hiking, swimming, water gymnastics and cross-country skiing are therefore recommended.

Behavioural Therapy: The Art of Self-Reflection

The power of habit should not be underestimated. Eating habits that have been internalized for years cannot simply be turned off. Behavioural therapy can often help to treat obesity successfully. It changes eating habits with scientifically recognised learning strategies. Patients learn not only to analyse their own eating behaviour, but also to control it. At the same time, they should change their approach to food – from shopping to consumption. The successful coping with relapses is also on the therapy plan. How does the patient deal with weak moments?

In order to avoid false expectations, the patient and therapist set realistic goals before the start of treatment. If the goals are missed, the therapy concept can be revised afterwards.

Obesity treatment with medication

If the change in diet does not lead to the desired success, it is conceivable that obesity could also be treated with drugs. However, medication is not administered in isolation; rather, it is accompanied by the nutrition, sports and therapy programme. The following active substances are currently approved on the German pharmaceutical market:

The role of the intestine

Billions of bacteria romp around in your bowels. And that's a good thing. Without them you couldn't digest food. But not all of them work as hard as the Firmicutes bacteria. This bacterial strain shows considerable use in fat utilization – but not necessarily to our advantage. Firmicutes do not simply excrete fat, but store it as unwanted fat pads. For this reason, the efficient Firmicutes often stand in the way of weight reduction – especially in the treatment of obesity.

You can find out about your Firmicutes with BIOMES. With the intestinal test BIOMES analyzes your intestinal flora according to the latest biotechnological standards1. A stool test, that you send to BIOMES is completely sufficient. The results will be displayed in the online dashboard. The analysis shows you how your intestinal flora is composed. It is the optimal basis for a successful treatment. In return you will also receive individual recommendations that will support you in your plans.

1. Cho I, Blaser M J. The human microbiome: at the interface of health and disease. Nature Reviews Genetics 2012:13, 260-270.