Tonawanda News

June 16, 2013

NATURAL HEALTH: Tips to optimize weight loss

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The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — When it comes to losing weight, frustration often arises with individuals who think they are doing everything right. Below are some tips that are sure to have you dropping pounds in no time.

• We are all different. It is incorrect to tell an entire population to eat the same way. Based on our ethnic origins, we tolerate things very differently. What works for some, will not likely work for all. The perfect example of this is blood types. Red meats act as an anti-inflammatory for O blood types, but is the worst possible choice for A blood types. Take the inflammatory foods out of your life and de-poof that body.

• Wheat is good for no one. We have been duped when it comes to wheat. Stop looking for “whole wheat” products, as they are troublesome in most of us. 

Issues such as digestive discomfort, bloating, hair loss, skin abnormalities, depression, agitated behavior, anemia, B-12 deficiency and even infertility are highly correlated to those eating wheat who shouldn’t. If you suffer from any of the above, give wheat (actually all gluten) up for two to three weeks and you will have your answer. Many of my patients say they almost are completely gluten free and have not seen a difference. 

 What you need to know is that your body cannot differentiate a crumb from a bagel. So all or nothing, OK?

• Vegetable to fruit ratio is commonly flawed. I often hear people say, “All I eat are fruits and vegetables.” This is great unless they eat four pieces of fruit to one veggie serving, or enjoy smoothies loaded with fruit. 

 Fruit, although healthy, is high in sugar. Sugar makes you fat. To avoid the sugar trap, you should eat eat vegetable servings for every fruit serving.

• No artificial sweeteners. Take a look around you. If you watch people that drink diet soda, iced tea and use artificial sweeteners in their coffee, you will notice that the majority are often 20 to 40 pounds heavier than those who don’t. I don’t care if you have diabetes, artificial sweeteners create a monster sweet tooth. They make you crave sugar more than you ever wanted it in the first place. Lose the sweet tooth and you will lose weight and suffer less inflammation. 

• Include more healthy fats. Healthy fats such as walnuts, flax seed, chia seeds, fish oils, cold-pressed olive oil and almonds are essential to helping your body metabolize fats. Most individuals do not get enough.

• Hormones. Estrogen dominance, in women as well as men, could be the reason weight loss is so difficult. This should be considered, especially for those with excess abdominal fat.

• Thyroid. Thyroid balance is essential for a healthy metabolism. Most individuals suffer hypothyroidism from iodine deficiencies. Unfortunately, many individuals who suffer from symptoms of hypothyroidism will not be treated because their labs fall within “normal” range. The parameters are too generous. Many should be treated and are not. 

• Fake foods. Frozen meals and foods that come out of packages are typically loaded with addictive chemicals that keep you craving more. As Jack LaLane said many times, “If man made it, don’t eat it!” Eat foods as they come from nature. Single-ingredient foods will keep you out of harm’s way.

• Not enough protein. Most individuals seeking weight loss fail to eat enough protein. Protein does not have to be in the form of meat. One cup of cooked spinach has approximately 7 grams of protein. By weight, spinach has more protein than red meat. Who would have thought? Nut butters, non-dairy milk, quinoa, hemp, tofu, lentils and beans are just a few examples of vegan protein choices.

• Exercise. You don’t have to spend hours at the gym to call it exercise. Just walking or 25 to 30 minutes or any movement that will increase your heart rate will help to boost that metabolism.

• Water is underrated when it come to weight loss. Pure, filtered water is cleansing and fat flushing. Adding fresh lemon to your morning glass will help boost metabolism. Flavored or colored waters are not beneficial. Herbal teas that are naturally decaffeinated can be included in the water category.

By taking a look at the above list, you may find a few areas you have not considered when it come to successful and permanent weight loss.

Catherine Stack is a doctor of naturopathy and a certified nurse midwife. Her practice is located at Journey II Health in Niagara Falls. Contact her at 298-8603 or at her website at www.journeyiihealth.com.

Catherine Stack is a doctor of naturopathy and a certified nurse midwife. Her practice is located at Journey II Health in Niagara Falls. Contact her at 298-8603 or at her website at www.journeyiihealth.com.