Solution to Obesity: Get a dog?


The fight against obesity and weight issues is still ongoing. Various diets and exercise programs are applied without long term results. Treadmills and indoor bicycles are bought and then thrown into basements after two weeks of sweating. However, one thing that is a bit harder to throw away is your own dog. A recent study shows great results for pet owners and their dogs (1). Dog owners showed significantly better physical activity levels and body conditioning scores than people with no dogs.

According to the WHO (World Health Organization) and OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development), obesity in the world has doubled since 1980. 18% of the world’s population is obese and what is even more disturbing is that even 1 out of 5 children are overweight or obese. In addition, one third of people living in México, USA and New Zealand are obese (2, 3).

These are the facts on the ground today and of course getting a dog isn’t the only answer however, I am putting these facts here as a small wake up call. It’s important to note that México has started various programs to fight obesity such as increased physical education in schools. Also, new outdoor parks are placed all the time and tax raises on saturated fat and sugary beverages have been planned. This is nice to hear but something else needs to be done especially at the individual level.

That something else is; we and our mentality need to change. My message is; we have to take responsibility of our own health and now is the time to wake up and take action. Our lack of responsibility is the true enemy of our health, not the lack of knowledge and false information in the media. We simply can’t afford to hide behind fake reasons like lack of time to exercise or eat healthy. It’s about making time to exercise and choosing healthier options even though they might be a bit more expensive. In the future, you will get your money back with less medication and fewer visits to the doctor.

There is no magic pill or product that will lose weight or give your health back in the long run and nobody can do it for us. However, what we do have is an increasing amount of professionals that can help us. In addition, we have better access to healthy food than ever before. The question is; who has the strength to look for better options and help and then start applying them?

Every single person living here can begin to drink more water, eat more natural food i.e. (fruits, berries, vegetables, nuts and seeds) and move the body at least 30 minutes per day. It’s not a question of money.

Anyway, getting a new hairy family member can offer continuity in the long run. Getting a dog can also be positive mental refreshment for the whole family. Only a few people can throw their dog into the basement and skip daily exercise. With these people, it should be on the contrary.

Therefore, surprise your family with a cute hairball and make a plan together on how you will take care of the new family member. This could be a kick towards healthier lifestyle and provide more happiness to the whole family.


Quick tips on how to begin:

  • Buy a dog and read the instructions.
  • After waking up, drink 1-2 glasses of lemon/lime water to empty the stomach.
  • Go for a walk with your new family member for 10-15 minutes and eat your normal breakfast.
  • Drink lots of water during the day and especially before every meal.
  • Add lots of greens and fruits to your diet and aim for 6 pieces per day.
  • After a day’s work, go for at least 30 min light walk with your pet.
  • Lastly, sleep as much as possible (go to bed early every day until you wake up more energetic in the morning (our sleeping guide can be found here)


Am I obese?

According to the WHO (World Health Organization) if the body mass index (BMI) is greater than 25 a person is overweight and over 30 is defined as obesity. Person whose BMI is over 40 is classified se severely obese.

Metric units BMI = bodyweight (kg) / height (m) ²

English units BMI = bodyweight (lbs.) / height (in) ²

(E.g. I’m a short guy with 160cm and 58 kilos of raw veggie made meat on me

Therefore, my calculation is 58 (kg) divided by (1.6 (m) times 1.6 (m) = 22.7 BMI)


Teijo Vienola is a physiotherapist, nutrition consultant and writer for Kikulife, focusing on functional health. He is helping people to thrive by providing information on natural nutrition and functional exercise.


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Teijo Vienola