Holistic alternatives to diet pills
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Holistic alternatives to diet pills

The Chicago Tribune recently reported on two diet pills, Merida and Lorcaserin, that are being discussed by the FDA advisory panel on whether the two drugs should remain on the market. Nearly two thirds of U.S. adults are overweight or obese and in need of a healthier life. It is estimated that Americans spend over $1 billion each year on weight loss aids. ChicagoHealers.com Practitioner Kristina Sargent, DC offers insight on diet pills, their negative side effects and holistic alternatives.

1. Cardiovascular Risk: Many diet pills have been linked to cardiovascular issues. Sibutramine, a drug approved by the FDA for long-term obesity treatment is now under scrutiny for possibly causing the increase in cardiovascular events and is not advisable for those with Cardiovascular Disease. Furthermore, appetite suppressants Phentermine and Fenfluramine have been taken off the market for causing heart valve damage.

2. Minimal weight loss – Most diet pills result in 5-22 pounds weight loss in a year. However, other weight loss plans can claim up to 2-5 pounds per week.

3. Side Effects: Many side effects of diet pills are mild, but many of them can be unpleasant. Some side effects can include dry mouth, stuffy nose, drowsiness, anxiety, sweating, increased blood pressure or heart rate, and excessive thirst.

4. Unhealthy Quick Fix: The actual weight loss achieved with diet pills may be temporarily better than the placebo – but the effect is not any longer lasting than those who try to lose weight on their own – and gain it all back. Diet pills have the strong potential of putting your body at risk. It is important to consult with a doctor before taking any type of diet pill to discuss the potential side effects and how they many effect you.

5. Gastrointestinal Side Effects: Orlistat and its over-the-counter form, Alli has produced great weight loss for patients, but is not tolerated by many because unpleasant gastrointestinal effects.

Dr. Kristina Sargent, DC. recommends the following healthy, holistic approaches to weight loss.

1. A Lifestyle Change: Losing weight and keeping it off in the long-term requires a lifestyle change. Exercise and diet always work if you make it a part of your everyday life.

2. Proper Education: Our body is only designed to consume 300-400 calories per sitting and any more calories consumed can result in weight gain.

3. Portion Control: It is important to practice proper portion sizes. If people were to measure a 3-4 ounce portion of meat they would be appalled at how small it really is.

4. Eat your Fruits and Veggies: Only 1/3 of Americans eat the recommended amount of fruit and 26% eat the recommended amount of vegetables on a daily basis. Increasing your intake of fruits and veggies is a way to healthily lose weight.

5. Support Team: People find deeper motivation when they have someone to help and support them through their weight loss journey. A support team or coach/accountability partner is key, whether that person is a friend, personal trainer, or doctor.

Another great supportive source such as drug rehab facilities can lead to the right direction.

6. Suggested Diet: The diet that always works is one that consists of a modified Mediterranean plan – One serving of dairy, one serving of whole grains or starchy vegetable, unlimited non-starchy vegetable, 1-2 servings of fruit, and 4-5 portions of 2-4ounces of lean protein – based on individual needs and calorie range.

Please contact me if you would like an interview with ChicagoHealers.com Practitioner Kristina Sargent, DC. For more information go to www.ChicagoHealers.com.

About ChicagoHealers.com

Chicago Healers is the nation’s pioneer prescreened integrative health care network, offering a comprehensive understanding of each practitioner’s services, approach, and philosophy.  Our holistic health experts teach and advocate natural and empowered health and life choices through their practices, the media, educational events, and our website.  With close to 200 practitioners and over 300 treatment services, Chicago Healers has provided nearly 400 free educational events for Chicagoans and has been featured in 300+ TV news programs and print publications. For more information, visit www.chicagohealers.com.

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