By definition, half of the population of North America is overweight. One in every five men and one in every three women in America are considered obese. Furthermore, one in every four American children is overweight. Considering these statistics, obesity is an American epidemic.

Surgical options always carry high risks and side effects, and caloric restriction is not always healthy. I encourage you to consider the natural options if you are overweight.

Overweight is defined as body weight of 20 percent over the normal prescribed weight for a particular age, build, or height.

It is a complex and frustrating problem that has many causative factors:genetics, lack of exercise, overeating, stress, boredom, low-fiber, high-carbohydrate diet, glandular and hormonal disorders, as well as age-related metabolic slowdown.

Dietary considerations
A high-fiber diet is essential because fiber improves the excretion of fat,improves glucose tolerance, and gives you a feeling of fullness and satisfaction. Emphasize the following foods: brown rice, tuna, chicken,white fish, fresh fruits and vegetables, high-protein lean foods, lentils,beans, wholegrain bread, and turkey.

Eat several small meals daily instead of skipping meals and eating one big meal daily. You want to give your body even-burning fuel throughout the day. Otherwise, your body will store fat instead of burn it for“survival.”

Avoid sugars and snack foods that contain salt and fat, like potato chips,ice cream, candy, cookies, cake, sodas, and breakfast cereals that are high in sugar. Avoid high-fat cheeses, sour cream, whole milk, butter,mayonnaise, fried foods, and peanut butter (unless it is natural), along with rich salad dressing. Do not drink alcoholic beverages at all; they are high in calories.Add healthy fats, such as olive oil, safflower oil, and flax oil, to your diet. They actually improve fat burning. And drink plenty of water.

Supplement support for weight control
• Chromium picolinate: 200–400 mcg
• Pyruvate: 6–8 grams per day with diluted fruit juice
• Nature’s Secret Ultimate Cleanse, to detoxify
• Whey protein shakes, to help keep blood sugar stabilize
• Green tea capsules, as a thermogenic
• White willow bark, as a thermogenic
• Chickweed, as an appetite suppressant
• Horsetail, to stimulate the body’s metabolism
• Kelp, to enhance thyroid function
• Chitosan, a fiber that can bind to fat in the stomach and prevent its absorption
(Note: Do not take chitosan unless fat is being consumed at a meal)
• L-carnitine, to promote lean muscle
• L-tyrosine, to raise serotonin to inhibit stress or emotional eating
• Ma huang (ephedra), as a very effective thermogenic
• Garcinia Cambogia (citrin), as an appetite suppressant
• Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), to decrease fat deposition especially in the abdomen

Lifestyle choices
• Avoid fad diets. They do not work. The results are only temporary.
• Eat slowly and chew your food properly. Take time to taste your food.
• Do not eat when you are upset, lonely, or depressed.
• Know that chewing gum can stimulate your appetite.
• Do not become constipated. Use natural remedies to stay regular.
• Begin a walking program (after dinner is best).
• Know that gradual weight loss is more permanent than quick weight loss. Be patient. The results are more likely to be permanent if the weight loss is a daily, gradual process of lifestyle and dietary changes.