Promising Solutions for Weight Loss Results

The buzz in weight loss these days is to decrease carbohydrates and reduce calories. However, if you decrease carbohydrates too much, blood sugar drops, stress hormones increase (cortisol rises) and insulin levels become imbalanced. When this occurs, the body resists weight loss. A better approach is to modify the types of carbohydrates eaten to allow blood sugar, insulin and cortisol levels to remain stable. Eliminating refined starches and simple sugars is a perfect start.

Next is the selection of quality protein (lean meats, poultry, fish, whey and eggs or egg whites). Increasing protein decreases the potential for weight gain and regain. Higher protein, combined with a lower intake of starch and sugar also has a favorable impact on belly fat.

Fat intake alone will not impact insulin or cortisol levels, but the combination of fat, starch and sugar eaten together spells disaster. The combination of protein and vegetables, however, does not spike hormonal imbalances. Additionally, protein and vegetables sources suppress hunger and increase fiber. This is a powerful punch to enhance fat burning at the cell level.

Obviously some individuals lose weight and burn fat quicker than others, but results are achievable for everyone with a positive mind-set and personal commitment to one-self. Losing weight is a systematic process that takes time. Be patient, results will not happen overnight.

The Fat Burning Plan

A healthy, fat burning plan limits the intake of simple sugar and starch, increases quality protein, vegetables and legumes, includes small portions of low-sugar fruits, advocates healthy fats rich in omega fatty acids and allows for skim or low fat dairy and dairy substitutes. The fat burning plan requires meal spacing and exercise. No skipping these two.

For exercise, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends a minimum of 150-250 minutes of cardiovascular exercise per week and resistance exercise at least 2x/week. You can split exercise sessions into 10-minute bouts performed 2-3 times/day, or cut back the intensity and increases the duration to a do-able amount for your body.

When choosing an exercise plan, pick something you enjoy! If it’s walking the dog, gardening, hiking, using in-home equipment, swimming or biking, make it a routine. Set realistic goals and schedule your exercise in advance. Make an appointment with yourself.

I also recommend self-monitoring weekly activity and food intake. When you have a visual, the success rate increases dramatically. There are several aps to help with this or you can journal by hand.

Finally, when attacking fat stores, expect to lose no more than 1 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. This equates to 5,250 to 7,000 calories burned per week! If you are losing more than 2 pounds per week, the additional loss is likely water or lean body mass.

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Intro To The Schwarzbein Principle for Weight Loss

Sometime ago, I read a book by Diana Schwarzbein, M.D. and Nancy Deville entitled “The Schwarzbein Principle – The Truth About Losing Weight, Being Healthy and Feeling Younger.”  From my perspective, I found their material quite interesting and factual.  Much appreciated was an approach that did not suggest fad dieting, miracle pills, potions or weight loss gimmicks.  Just clean, healthy eating with real foods designed to decrease the metabolic aging process, balance hormonal response and improve overall sense of well-being.  Fast forward to 2013 and I have sense read many, many books advocating the basic guidelines presented by Dr. Schwarzbein and Nancy Deville in 1999.   The following are key elements to consider:

  1. To maintain hormonal balance, particularly insulin, and hunger control,  you don’t want to skip meals.  When you skip meals, a number of things can happen.  You can become mentally unfocused, tired, and blood sugar levels can drop. When they drop too low, a person may start to get light headed, dizzy, sick to their stomach and feel the urge to eat even more at their next meal.
  2. Try to eliminate the consumption of man-made, artificial, processed and packaged foods.  These items contain food substitutes, chemical compounds and preservatives that are not good for our bodies.
  3. Try to eat real foods in their most natural state (fresh fish, tofu, pasteurized milk, whole cottage cheese and yogurt, nuts, seeds, legumes, fresh fruits and vegetables, high quality protein, lean meats, eggs, flax seed oil, olive oil, 100% all natural nut butter or peanut butter, brown rice, non-starchy vegetables).  Real foods spell healthy food.  They provide our bodies with good nutrition for healthy living.
  4. Eat a variety of good fats, real foods, non-starchy vegetables and protein at each meal.  Note the phrase “at each meal.”  The combination will not only provide you with essential nutrients and productive enzymes, it will help to satisfy hunger between feeding.
  5. Avoid taking too many over-the-counter medications, drugs, excess stimulants and refined alcohol.  Many of these contain by-products which are filtered through the liver (hopefully) and stored as toxins in our fat cells.
  6. Exercise on a regular basis.  Regular varies from individual to individual.  For myself, I try to stay active on most days of the week.  Five to six is my personal exercise goal.  Two to three days/week is beneficial.  One to two days/week is better than no exercise at all.

Believe me, these simple steps can have a major impact on your health and well-being! If you live a fast-paced and busy lifestyle (eat most of your meals out side the home) try following the 80/20 rule.  Follow the steps eighty percent of the time, give yourself a break twenty percent of the time.  Enjoy life and be good to your body!