Working at being healthy is WORK!
I have seen so many patients who come in for anti-aging Testosterone and estradiol who are 50-100% overweight and who do not follow my instructions for weight loss, that I am tired of talking to myself in my office! It is frustrating to try to help a patient who doesn’t really want to help themselves when it comes to denying oneself food or sugary drinks, or alcohol to lose weight……many of my patients just shut me out when it comes to diet and exercise.
I think being obese allows people to feel like a victim in our society when they are not! Working at being healthy is WORK! The benefits are that you get to your ideal weight, your joints don’t have to be replaced, you can exercise, walk, and keep up with your kids and grandkids and you will live longer and happier. If you take the easy way out and whine when I tell you to stop eating and drinking certain foods, then you are making the decision to be sick and overweight.
I am a prime example of working at being normal weight: I have the genes for adult-onset Diabetes and for Obesity (yes there are genes that make it harder to lose weight), but I am not diabetic or obese. A doctor taught me how to eat and not be hungry as well as to exercise to fit my body type, to keep me normal weight. It isn’t fun or easy….but I’m accustomed to it and I know every day I have to eat properly to be healthy!
Let’s start with going over the reasons you have trouble losing weight…you may have some or all of these reasons….but they can be adjusted if you have the courage to go for it!
#1. All calories are not equal: This means that any food has calories in it but foods made of one type of food like a carbohydrate, isn’t equal to the same number of calories as a protein. A calorie is a measure of the energy you can get out of any type of food, but your body uses the food differently based on the type of calorie it is, and how your metabolism is set up, genetically.
Example: If you eat 2 pieces of white bread you eat around 200 calories of carbohydrate. Instead, if you eat 3 eggs you have about the same number of calories, but your body doesn’t use them the same way. If you are already overweight, you are insulin resistant so a carbohydrate will overstimulate your insulin, and the carb calories will make fat and not energy. If you eat 3 eggs your insulin will not be over stimulated, and you will be able to make energy from the eggs.
A low carbohydrate diet is the one all women over 40 should follow to remain healthy and normal weight. NO SUGAR, NO CANDY CAKE< BAKED GOODS OR SODA! The carbs should be in the form of complex carbs like nuts, vegetable, and fruit carbs, but no corn syrup sweeteners.
#2 Your genes are working against you, and you may have inherited the genes for weight gain, Obesity, and or diabetes, but it isn’t necessarily going to cause you to be obese or diabetic. We now know that a person can turn off their genes for obesity and diabetes by living a healthy lifestyle. The study of this fact is called Epigenetics.
You are born with the genes from your parents and grandparents; however, genes are not a blueprint for your life that can’t be changed…If you eat a low carb diet and exercise daily you can turn your genes off and look and feel different from the blue print you were born with.
#3. You just diet and don’t exercise. Diet alone will not give you lasting weight loss. It is true that people who diet and fast can lose lbs. quickly, but it is generally a loss of water. Lasting weight loss takes eating right and exercise at the same time!
#4. You just exercise and don’t eat a low carb whole food diet: Exercise alone is not an effective weight loss method. Sadly, we can always out eat our exercise, and diet alone without exercise is not effective because our bodies were born to move, and they shut off calorie burning if you are sedentary. The more muscle you have, the more ability you must burn calories. It takes exercise to create and maintain muscle mass.
Exercise + a Healthy low carb Diet is the only way to lose weight!
#5. You are over 40 and gaining weight. Your successful ways of losing weight no longer work. After age 40 testosterone from the ovaries and testes decreases and goes away which causes weight gain. Testosterone is vital to weight loss because testosterone turns the calorie burning that occurs in our muscles, on. You need to replace it when you don’t have any!
Weight loss requires muscles and testosterone to burn calories efficiently. This is the reason most women gain weight after 40—testosterone decreases, the muscles don’t burn calories, and the muscles are replaced by fat. The smaller your muscle mass, the lower your basal metabolic rate.
#6. You just eat junk food and carbs, no salad, or fresh foods. Everyone who wants to be healthy should eat a salad every day. We are omnivores—we are built to eat fruit, veggies, nuts, meat, and a wide variety of fresh foods. Salad fills you up and provides nutrients that everyone needs. Salad also feeds your gut bacteria that make your feel-good neurotransmitters and peptides communicators. If they don’t get roughage…they aren’t fed and you don’t absorb nutrients or make the right neurotransmitters….you gain weight and get depressed!
#7 You don’t eat meat or high protein foods—Humans must eat half their weight in grams of protein every day to maintain their muscle mass and burn calories! If you don’t eat enough protein, you will lose muscle and decrease the number of calories you burn in a day. To find the number of grams of protein you need per day, divide your weight in pounds in half. The result is the number of grams of protein you need per day. If you exercise daily…you need even more!
Next week we will discuss the reasons you are having trouble losing weight, #8-15.
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