Overweight / Obesity Management


Ayurveda has clearly mentioned about obesity under the title Medoroga or diseased state of fat metabolism. According to Acharya Charaka,when the fat get deposited in particular areas like hips, abdomen and pendulous breasts and whose vitality is much less than his body size is seen in obese. Obesity can be due to the factors like overeating heavy, sweet, oily foods, lack of exercise and hereditary predisposition. And other factors that results in obesity are disorders of pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, gonads, pancreas and hypothalamus. Because of the unhealthy food habits and low activity the metabolism rate is lowered and hence results in the derangement of Agni or digestive powder leads to production of Ama, which disturbs Agni of fatty tissue and blocks the proper formation of further tissues. Improperly formed fatty tissue accumulates in the body causing obesity. Accumulated fat causes disturbance to movement of Vata, which in turn increases appetite. Patient therefore eats more and the entire food is then converted into proper fat tissue, creating a viscous circle. Obesity results in reduction of longevity, premature aging, unpleasant odor, excessive sweating, dyspnea on mild exertion, excessive hunger and thirst, weakness, loss of vitality, loss of sexual powder and mental confusion. If the condition is not properly treated, various complications like hypertension, hyper-cholesterol, heart diseases, hyperacidity, kidney infection, diabetes, fistula, arthritis and lipoma are produced.

Persons having Kapha constitution, obesity is very common, as their metabolism is very slow. It has been found that to relieve strain or depression these people start eating. These people have the tendency to retain water. Hence the excess weight is mainly due to water retention and not due to accumulation of improper fatty tissue. In these individuals usually the function of the kidney is very weak.

Persons having Pitta constitution usually has excess appetite. However their metabolism is very rapid, hence they have fewer tendencies to develop obesity than Kapha constitution. But if these people do not take care regarding over eating sweets or sugars, then they can develop obesity.

In Vata type people obesity is very remarkable. These are fluctuations in gaining weight and losing weight. Many Vata persons eat to provide security against their nervousness or anxiety, which is common in these people. In all types exercise is a must.

Obesity is the most common metabolic disorder Obesity is a condition in which individual is significantly overweight. Body mass index BMI more than 25. Excessive body fat is accumulated on the belly, buttocks, breasts and thighs. This may lead to life style diseases like diabetes, hypertension etc.

Body mass index (BMI) is a simple index of weight-for-height that is commonly used to classify overweight and obesity in adults. It is defined as a person’s weight in kilograms divided by the square of his height in meters (kg/m2).

The WHO definition is:

  • a BMI greater than or equal to 25 is overweight
  • a BMI greater than or equal to 30 is obesity.

BMI provides the most useful population-level measure of overweight and obesity as it is the same for both sexes and for all ages of adults. However, it should be considered a rough guide because it may not correspond to the same degree of fatness in different individuals.

As per Ayurvedic concept-Body is made of 7- Dhatus {Rasa (Lymph), Rakta (Blood), Mamsa (Muscle), Meda( Fat), Asthi (Bones), Majja (Nervous System) Shukra (Reproductive System)}. But in Obese fellow Meda is excessively nourished and remaining other Dhatus get malnourished. Kapha gets accumulated in between. Role of medicines with dietary correction is to remove obstructed Kapha and let all Dhatus nourish equally. When Kapha increases in abnormal fashion, Fat metabolism gets hampered and person becomes Obese.

Three important points for losing weight:

  1. Controlling eating habits.
  2. Regular exercise.
  3. Avoiding the causes of weight gain