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What if the extra weight you carry is not your own?

Obesity Is Not a Character Flaw!

By Liz Jelinek, PhD

Is obesity the result of poor self-control? According to a survey by the National Opinions Research Center, more than 80% of individuals in the United States believe that obesity is not a disease, but is a result of a lack of willpower. Those surveyed tied obesity with cancer as the #1 health risk, and a greater health risk than diabetes, heart disease, mental illness, and HIV/AIDS, but insisted obesity is not a disease. Alfonso Torquati, MD, Chief of Surgery at Rush Medical Center in Chicago strongly disagrees, and insists that obesity is not a character flaw, but a chronic disease with a range of genetic, epigenetic, social and economic factors.

Dr. Torquati points out that obesity is an evolutionary issue—for hundreds of thousands of years, weight loss signaled a scarcity of food that meant people were starving. In response, the human body created a complex survival system—weight loss triggers a drop in the hormone leptin that tells the body it has been fed. At the same time, ghrelin increases, the hormone that signals the body that it is time to eat. At the same time, the brain intensifies the sense of reward the body experiences from eating, which results in the muscles burning fewer calories, causing the extra calories to be stored as fat.

In my research in epigenetics, I found that obesity can be the result of experiences of the ancestors. The Dutch Hunger Winter, the result of a Nazi occupation of Holland, along with a food embargo, resulted in people in a northern province of Holland survived on less than 500 calories a day for as long as nine months. Infants in utero during that period often developed obesity later in life.

In addition, we know from Systemic Family Constellations that an individual can become entangled with the fate of an ancestor, resulting in many individuals suffering from obesity as the result of an experience of an ancestor who may have lived with serious food shortages as a result of a wide-spread famine, but also from socio-economic issues and poverty.

Family Constellations explores obesity from a systemic perspective. Join us for a workshop on weight—do you carry more weight than you’d like to carry and find diets just haven’t worked? Or are you consistently under-weight and can’t figure out why you don’t seem to be able to gain weight no matter how much you eat?

Please join us and heal entanglements of ancestral weight issues, or come to work on other issues—even if your weight is normal. Systemic Constellations can bring healing to all!


Saturday, May 13, 2017, 2200 Green Road, Ste H, Ann Arbor, MI 48105 | 10:00am-2pm | $45



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