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Diet is not a cure: how to get rid of obesity once and for all

26.06.2019 Author: Psychologist Pavel Khoroshutin

As it was reported by the Ministry of Health Care for the year 2017 almost 2 million people in our country suffer from obesity. And these are just official statistics based on those people who has visited a doctor. It’s hard to imagine how many more people are trying to deal with this ailment on their own. And in perspective this number is increasing every year. [1]


  1. Obesity: what it is and what to expect
  2. Causes of obesity
  3. Symptoms of the disease
  4. Obesity Treatment: where to start
  5. Obesity and pregnancy
  6. Obesity prevention

Obesity: what it is and what to expect

causes of obesity

Obesity is the growing of fat tissue in the body; it leads to an increase of weight. Evolution put our body into line of learning how to accumulate nutrients in order to be able to survive if there is lack of food. In ancient times fat people were even considered wealthy and healthy. You can recall the famous “Venus of Willendorf” sculpture, the goddess of fertility. On the other hand in the modern world excessive weight is a serious health threat that can lead to death in the most severe cases. Indeed, obesity is the cause of diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease, joint diseases, infertility – and this is not a full list. [2]

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Causes of obesity

The most common cause of obesity is an imbalance in the energy absorbed and energy spent. Simply said, when we eat too much and move too little. But obesity can also be caused by diseases of the digestive and endocrine systems, genetic disorders or even psychological problems that entail eating disorders.

The risk factors for obesity according to doctors are:

  • sedentary lifestyle;
  • chronic stress;
  • lack of sleep;
  • taking drugs that affect hormonal balance, for example, antidepressants or oral contraceptives;
  • some physiological conditions, such as pregnancy and menopause. [3]

In order to treat obesity in the most effective way first we must find the definite cause of the disease.

Symptoms of the disease

obesity diet

The main symptom, of course, is a noticeable increase in body weight and volume, causing discomfort.

According to the WHO, if a person has body mass index greater than or equal to 30, than he/she may suffer from obesity. However, this indicator does not take into account characteristics of the body, therefore, it is impossible to determine the diagnosis on this basis only. [4]

For more information on how to calculate body mass index, read the article:

But the obesity is dangerous because it affects all organ systems of the body, and it becomes increasingly difficult for the body to cope with its tasks. Therefore, the following symptoms often accompany obesity:

  • shortness of breath;
  • increase in blood pressure;
  • joint pain;
  • heartache;
  • decreased libido;
  • decreased performance, rapid fatigue.

If you notice these signs of illness, you should consult a physician; he will prescribe you examination and consultation with other doctors such as gastroenterologist, endocrinologist and psychologist.

Obesity Treatment: where to start

obesity in women

The main goal of treating obesity is to reduce body weight. Depending on the severity of the disease, doctors can prescribe different methods – from diet to surgery. Complex approach is the best way to fight obesity. An important part of treatment is changing behavior model: in order to achieve weight loss one needs to change psychological mindsets that provoke “emotional eating”. This will help consolidate the result and maintain a new weight for a long time.

But first we must warn you against treating obesity on your own, since it could not only waste your time, but also harm your body. First of all, it’s worth it to visit a doctor and find out if obesity is only a symptom of another disease. In this case, you need to treat the cause, not the effect. But if the doctor diagnosed you with obesity, you need to change the behavior model – this will help to solve the problem.

Diet and exercise

Diet and workout (physical exercises) are the most popular methods of treatment. Usually treatment begins with changing the diet and arranging workouts. As you remember, the main cause of obesity is the misbalance between the incoming and spent energy. If the calories obtained from food are not burned the body accumulates them in the form of fat. In order to lose weight you need to induce a slight calorie deficit and for this physical activity is necessary.

As for diet, in recent years doctors have been increasingly questioning this method of treating obesity. In their opinion, diet does not bring long-term results: a person loses only up to 10% of body weight, but more often than not lost kilos return later. [5] In addition, an improperly selected diet can do even more harm to your health. Of course, adherence to the diet is necessary, but it will be beneficial only in combination with other methods. And, of course, only a doctor can choose a diet that will provide the body with all the necessary nutrients.

Behavioral Psychology: 7Spsy method

You can’t expect fast results when applying traditional methods of treating obesity; they give only a short-term effect. The weight that was rapidly lost will also rapidly return. Usually this is due to the fact that the treatment is aimed only at eliminating the current problem. But an effective treatment for obesity is, first of all, a lifestyle change. It produces the best results and a guarantee that the disease will not return in the future.

Ultimately, the main cause of obesity is eating behavior: when a person eats much more than he or she needs and does not stop, even when feeling full. This means that it’s better to start treatment with the correction of a behavior model.

This is what 7Spsy technique is focused on. The method is based on behavioral psychology, theoretically substantiated and has proven its effectiveness. The course program is designed for 2-6 weeks, depending on the features of the person’s condition. As a result, you will learn to enjoy small portions of food. You will have a healthy diet gradually reducing your weight without strict limitations and exhausting workouts.


Physiotherapy can be applied during treatment of obesity as an addition, although it rarely leads to lasting results as an independent method. The goals of therapy are to improve the metabolism, increase the energy consumption of the body, activate redox processes in the tissues, and also help the body adapt to changes. Physiotherapy also helps to cope with the effects of obesity – for example, strengthens the heart and blood vessels.

Patients are most often prescribed various water procedures: Charcot’s shower, contrast baths, baths with mineral water, dousing with cold water. All of them help to remove harmful substances from the body, to tone up, to improve endurance to cold. Various wipes and wraps have a similar effect. [6]

Natural home remedies treatment

Home remedies can also be helpful when treating obesity, for example, herbal slimming tea or dietary supplements. But there are two important points:

  • firstly, these remedies are only supplementary, they work in combination with other methods only;
  • secondly, you should consult your doctor before using any nutritional supplements. 

Many doctors advise sauna. It serves the same purpose as physiotherapy. But you need to be especially careful with this tool: major temperature fluctuations place a serious strain on the heart, and patients with obesity are already at risk. It is better to choose other medical procedures with a similar effect, so as not to harm your own health. 

Surgical treatments for obesity

Such radical methods are usually used for patients with the fourth degree of obesity. Usually they are aimed at reducing the volume of the stomach or at reducing the absorption of nutrients in the intestine.

But such well-known procedures as liposuction and abdominalplasty are not methods of treating the disease. These are for body sculpting. When it comes to health, such manipulations are useless, because real harm to the body is not caused by subcutaneous fat, but visceral one – fat located around internal organs.

And, of course, it is important to understand that surgical treatment is conducted according to strict indications only. Usually, such methods are used if the patient’s body mass index exceeds 40 points or if there are serious complications of the disease.

Obesity and pregnancy

This disease also affects pregnancy – it rarely proceeds without complications in obese patients. These complications may include severe toxicosis, diabetes, malfunctioning of the heart, prolonged pregnancy and weak delivery action. In addition, obesity can lead to problems in the development of the child, for example, defects of the nervous system. [7]

Despite these risks obesity is not a contraindication to pregnancy. But when planning a conception you must definitely visit a doctor. It is important to consider a diet so that all the necessary substances enter the body. Moderate physical activity is useful – for example, walking not only helps to fight excess weight, but also to saturate the body with oxygen and to improve the mood. And simple exercises prepare the body for childbirth. Many clinics offer special courses for expectant mothers, where they will help you to choose the optimal physical exercises.

Obesity prevention

Any disease is easier to prevent than to cure. And for obesity problem, the best way is to thoroughly check and revise daily menu and start being more active during daytime. It’s not necessary to do your best every day in the gym or become a vegetarian. Just reduce the amount of sugar and saturated fat in the diet, eat more vegetables and fruits, make sure that every day there are protein products on the table such as meat, cheese, cottage cheese – and complex carbohydrates, including cereals and whole grain bread. Make physical activity a pleasant part of everyday life – for example, walk more often, don’t use an elevator and start the day with a light workout. Tran your body just half an hour a day, and not only obesity, but also many other diseases will pass you by.

We will help you to solve the problem of excess weight

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  1. Statisticheskij sbornik 2017 god. Ministerstvo Zdravoohraneniya RF (https://www.rosminzdrav.ru/ministry/61/22/stranitsa-979/statisticheskie-i-informatsionnye-materialy/statisticheskiy-sbornik-2017-god). 
  2. Ozhirenie: prichiny i posledstviya (https://medportal.ru/enc/endocrinology/dislipoproteidemii/Dislipoproteidemii/)
  3. Spravochnik boleznej. Ozhirenie (https://medaboutme.ru/zdorove/spravochnik/bolezni/ozhirenie/)
  4. Ozhirenie i izbytochnyj ves (https://www.who.int/ru/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight)
  5. Fizioterapiya pri ozhirenii (https://prodiabetik.ru/fizioterapii/23-fizioterapiya-pri-ozhirenii)
  6. Osobennosti beremennosti pri ozhirenii (https://www.7ya.ru/article/Kriticheskaya-massa-osobennosti-beremennosti-pri-ozhirenii/)