I hear from so many women who say they just can’t lose weight no matter how little they eat or how much they workout. (Sorry men, this article will be directed to the ladies…it’s nothing personal.)
Everyone is looking for the magic bullet to weight loss and more importantly, keeping it off! We’ve all been told about calories in calories out. The less we eat the more we’ll lose. That’s just not a sustainable solution. How many times have you restricted calories for a period of time only to gain back the weight (plus more)? Probably every single time, just like me. Think about it. If you restrict your caloric intake your body says uh oh, I’m not getting any fuel so I better hang on to the fat I have and the body will change its set point. Think of it like the set point of a thermostats. If you have your air conditioner on and set it to 78, the AC comes on if it get to 79. Your body will do the same thing. If you eat 1000 calories your body says I better store anything over 1000 and that’s why we gain the weight (plus more) as we add more calories. Calorie restriction will slow your metabolism also called your ” set point”.
The calories in calories out is a myth as told by Ken Berry, MD in his book Lies My Doctor Told Me: Medical Myths That Can Harm Your Health. He explains how weight loss is a hormonal issue and not only how much you eat but what you eat effects your hormones. The body only uses the 3 micronutrients: carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.
As you may know I’m a huge proponent of the ketogenic diet, which is a high fat, moderate protein, low carb diet. I’ve followed the keto diet for 1 year starting January 1, 2017 and have lost 43 lbs this year AND I have never felt better at age sixty-one.
There are 4 hormones I’ll briefly talk about. I look at it this way. If you go see a 5-piece band and the drummer is awesome and the guitar player sucks, your experience won’t be good. It’s the same with your hormones. All 5 hormones need to be performing optimally. A ketogenic diet will balance out your hormones. If your diet isn’t right your body won’t respond. It’s important to have a comprehensive blood panel done to see what needs to be done. Your health care provider should be your partner in care and not your dictator.
- This is the queen hormone of weight loss/gain. In a non-diabetic person insulin is produced in the pancreas and allows the body to use glucose (from carbs) for energy for future use. When insulin is elevated it tells the body to store sugar. Hum? So if I don’t eat carbohydrates does this mean the insulin will lower? You bet it will! Therefore, a low carb diet can reverse type-2 diabetes. Think about this for a minute. If you’re taking insulin for your diabetes your body is always in fat storage mode. From my observation, diabetics are overweight, if not obese. For obvious reasons the mainstream medicine and big pharma don’t want to talk about this easy fix. (that’s an article for a later date).
- Cortisol – aka the stress hormone. There’s good stress and bad stress. An example of good stress is a heavy workout or sprinting. You all know what bad stress is. You’re in a job you hate, your relationship sucks, you’re dealing with a stressful situation. You’re not sleeping, which effects all your hormones. If your cortisol is always elevated you’re turning off any weight loss and you’ll hold weight. Chronic stress can be a huge inhibitor of weight loss. 30,000 years ago our genetics were designed to help us with those times of starvation.
- Thyroid – The thyroid gland is the most complicated gland in our body. It’s also known as the master gland and really helps regulate your metabolism. If you’re not feeling your best, you’re cold all the time, your skin and hair are dry, you’re experiencing hair loss, constipation, and thinning eyebrows, you should have a thyroid blood panel done. Just checking THS isn’t enough since that just tells you if the pituitary gland is telling the thyroid to make thyroid hormone. It doesn’t tell you if there are an underling issues. Go to stopthethyroidmadness.com to learn more about what test you should request from your medical practitioner. If your traditional medical doctor discourages it, perhaps it’s time to work with a naturopathic doctor.
- Sex hormones – Ladies, I’m talking about the big 3. Estrogen, progestogen and yes, even testosterone. We need all 3 to be balanced optimally. It’s a known fact taking synthetic hormones can greatly increase breast cancer and in addition taking any hormone in a pill form can also damage the liver. Bioidentical hormones are natural hormones that need to be compounded by a pharmacist and applied to the skin. Here’s an interesting fact. Back in the 70’s men were given testosterone called Estratest. It was found this was causing liver failure in men and was taken off the market in the 80’s. Guess what ladies, that same drug is now given to women! I guess we have stronger livers?? What the heck??
In summary, work with a medical practitioner or naturopathic doctor who is your partner. Have extensive blood work done to get to the root cause of why you’re not feeling the best you and why you can’t lose weight.
Pat Garner holds certifications in Professional, Addiction & Recovery Coaching, is a Sedona Method Facilitator and a Certified Canfield Success Principles Trainer. Most recently, a number of her articles on addiction and wellness have been featured by the World Coaching Institute. She has earned the reputation as a dedicated leader and advocate of change. During her own journey from addiction fifteen years ago, Pat discovered the world of holistic health and wellness that led to her adopt and promote a ketogenic lifestyle that has become an integral part of her mission to awaken people to their infinite potential so they can achieve lasting personal success in all areas of life. Pat invites reader comments and questions.