Your New Year Success Story!
With the beginning of the New Year, many people start making resolutions, such as reading more, spending less time watching TV, or getting in shape. Typical New Year resolutions have something to do with either losing or gaining weight – although those wishing to gain weight usually only want to gain it in very specific places!
Gym memberships soar and exercise equipment is purchased with lofty goals in mind. This equipment often turns into an expensive clothes rack when people lose their interest in exercising because they are not meeting their fitness or weight loss goals. If this sounds familiar, the following information will be helpful.
A common myth is that to lose weight, one should simply eat less. While sounding reasonable, the reality is that your body changes the rate at which it burns fuel based on how much fuel is available. This is why one of the worst things you can do when trying to lose weight is to skip meals, especially breakfast. This tells your body that food is scarce and it must use fuel (food) in a highly efficient manner. When you only eat one meal a day, your body quickly goes into conservation. Skipping meals also disrupts your blood sugar balance, making life difficult for you as well as those around you. To avoid blood sugar problems and boost your metabolism, eat several smaller, healthy meals throughout the day.
Other factors that influence the success or failure of weight loss programs include digestion, blood pressure, metabolism, energy, sleep, and mood –all controlled by hormones. Hormones are chemical messengers that activate the systems and subsystems in the body, and are manufactured by various glands throughout the body. The glands that produce hormones related to weight include the adrenals, thyroid, and pancreas.
The adrenal glands are often referred to as master glands because they control almost all the other glands and organs in the body. They make over 30 different hormones for the body. Since healthy hormone activity in the body has more to do with the ratios of one hormone to another than actual amounts, healthy adrenal glands are invaluable. The balance of estrogen to progesterone is a good example. Both men and women may experience problems, such as weight gain or cancer, when estrogen levels are higher than normal. When the adrenal glands are working properly, they make progesterone to help balance excess estrogen. Luckily, specific nutrition is available to help you improve the health of your adrenal glands.
The adrenal glands also control digestion – one of the first things to shut down during stress. When digestion shuts down, food stays in the stomach until it rots or putrefies, sending toxins throughout the body. Weight loss becomes more difficult as these toxins are sent to fat cells for storage.
Proper weight control and maintenance depends upon having a healthy thyroid gland. Thyroid hormones are needed by every cell in the body for cellular metabolism. Taking your temperature may give you some insight into how well your thyroid is functioning. Temperature measured under the tongue should be roughly 98.6 degrees F. When measured under the arm for thyroid efficiency, your temperature should be roughly 97.6 degrees F., or higher. A lower temperature may indicate a sluggish thyroid, which means that you may have more difficulty burning fat. Both sluggish as well as overactive thyroid glands benefit from extra nourishment. A particular supplement discovered in the 1800’s by Dr. Lugol contains a specific ratio of iodine and potassium iodide.
Hormones from your pancreas make insulin to get sugar into the cells to be burned as fuel rather than stored as fat. Too much sugar overloads the system, leading to Type 2 Diabetes. Glucagon is a pancreatic hormone which helps your body burn fats for energy and is activated when sugar levels are low. This is why staying away from sugar encourages weight loss.
The best diets include lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, and good fats. Avoid trans-fats (especially processed ones found in junk foods and oils that have been heated to the point of smoking) and anything called hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated. These fats are poison and cannot be safely burned as fuel by the body. Walter Willet, M.D., of the Harvard School of Public Health stated, “Eating trans-fats, especially margarine, kills 30,000 to 100,000 people every year” (American Journal of Public Health, 1994; 84,722-724).
Exercise builds muscles. Both sugars, and the fats that turn into sugar, are burned in muscle. The more muscle, the more sugar and fats burned. Men have an advantage, typically having 10% more muscle mass than women.
Never overlook the importance of drinking plenty of good, clean water (spring, reverse osmosis, or using a high quality carbon filter is best) to improve detoxification and help with elimination. Consuming the proper fruits and vegetables (in a wide variety of colors) provides fiber and the antioxidants that are needed to neutralize free radicals resulting from strenuous exercise.
The biggest secret to permanent weight loss is to detoxify the fat in your body so that it can be burned as fuel. Remember, fat is designed to be stored fuel for the body, as well as providing a place to store toxins.
Your body doesn’t want to burn toxic fat, and will hold onto it to protect you. However, under certain forced conditions of starvation, fasting, and other non-recommended “diet plans,” potentially heavy toxic substances are released into circulation where the liver and kidneys (as major filter organs) can be greatly harmed. For this reason, weight loss programs that start with detoxification are the most successful and the safest.
Before starting any weight loss program, I recommend consulting with a qualified natural health care provider versed in weight loss programs and who knows how to test adrenal gland function. Those who wish to lose a lot of weight should be closely supervised by their health care provider because of the dangers involved when toxins are released rapidly from the body. Three cheers to creating your very own New Year Success story!
Dr. William H. Karl, D.C
Dr. William H. Karl, D.C., is a Brimhall Certified Wellness Doctor with over 30 years experience helping people maximize their health potential, and have fun while doing it! On behalf of the Foundation for Wellness Professionals, he will speak at the Livonia Civic Center Library on January 11th at 7pm on “The 5 Secrets to Permanent Weight Loss.” For more information, visit: www.karlwellnesscenter.com or call him at: