Category Archives: Weight Loss

The beginnings of an opportunity

I would have never believed it.  To hear this kind of news, you must be kidding.  I eat right, or think I do.  I’m not tremendously overweight, at least if I compare myself with the general populace. I exercise sometimes, in spite of the fact that the media tells me that I only have to do 20 minutes of vigorous exercise everyday.  I must remember that everyone has a different definition of vigorous!

About 15 years ago, my wife and I were attending a health fair at one of the local hotels.  I had been thinking more seriously about what I would look like when I got to be in my 60’s and beyond. Looking at the people around me, I realized that I was pretty healthy and really didn’t have any serious health issues (or so I thought).  Sure, I had some heart problems, my joints hurt due to a bad knee injury left over from basic training,  took Tums for my stomach after evening meals, and was pushing 200 pounds for my 6 foot frame.  Wasn’t this the norm?  Isn’t this America where it was okay to be 20-30 pounds overweight and talk about all your health issues?

It was at the health fair, that I took one of the devices you hold in your hands at chest level for a minute or so and the readout came:  OBESE.  What?  You are kidding, right?  OBESE at 26 percent body fat?  OBESE?  I didn’t like that word.  For me it was the start of my quest to be healthier.  I needed to do something about it.  But what do I do?  I had been at this weight for over 30 years!  Why would I want to change?  This was my wake-up call.  However, it wasn’t one of those instant changes where you decide to go on a crash diet by not eating, drinking only water for a week straight to get back into shape.  There was no way I was going to do that.  I had seen other people try it, and after a week of dehydration, they would typically go back to eating like they had always done as that was their “comfort zone” and they were not about make a change.

For my wife and I, it was more about taking a look at where we were, assessing the situation, and starting to make subtle changes.  I was content with my weight at that time.  I did not realize that I would be more content, as well as comfortable, if I lost  some of those extra pounds that were classifying me as “obese.”

The first thing I did was to start reading labels and counting calories.  Not that I knew anything at the time about what I was reading, but it sounded good.  The next thing was to eliminate things I didn’t really need like candy, sugar, sodas, junk food, etc.  Needless to say, just by doing that, I reduced that number of Tums I was taking every night.

The next step, I hypothesized correctly, was the need for some sort of vitamin supplementation.  There are a million different variations of nutritional vitamin supplements on the market.  Everyone advertises theirs as the best.  I started with a vitamin network marketing company that said they could prove they were the best.  They had the documentation, the doctors’ endorsements, and at the plenty of testimonies endorsing the products.

That was now the opportunity to begin a new career!

 

Lose Weight To Boost Your Vitamin D Levels?

Lose Weight To Boost Your Vitamin D Levels?

Lose Weight To Boost Your Vitamin D Levels?

It might sound strange, but taking higher doses of vitamin D or sitting in the sun may not always be the best way to boost your vitamin D levels.  For some people losing weight might do the trick.

In fact, overweight or obese women who lose more than 15 percent of their body weight significantly increase their circulating levels of vitamin D.

Researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center followed 439 overweight-to-obese, sedentary, postmenopausal women, ages 50 to 75, for one year.  The women were randomly assigned to one of four groups: exercise only, diet only, exercise plus diet and no intervention.

Those who lost 5 percent to 10 percent of their body weight through diet and/or exercise saw a relatively small increase in blood levels of vitamin D (about 2.7 nanograms per milliliter, or ng/mL).  But women who lost more than 15 percent of their weight almost tripled their vitamin D levels (about 7.7 ng/mL).

How did this happen? The authors theorized that obese and overweight people have lower levels of vitamin D because the nutrient is stored in fat deposits. They believe that during weight loss vitamin D trapped in fat tissue is released into the blood and becomes available for use throughout the body.

In their paper published online in the American Journal of Clinical Nutritionthe researchers noted that vitamin D is generally lower in obese people.  The lead author suggested that low vitamin D levels could account, in part, for the link between obesity and diseases such ascancer, heart disease and diabetes.

The researchers were surprised at the effect of weight loss on blood vitamin D levels. They noted that the relationship between weight loss and blood vitamin D is not linear.  It goes up dramatically with more weight loss.

They noted that weight loss of 5 percent to 10 percent is generally recommended to improve risk factors such as blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugars.  But they believed their findings suggest that more weight loss might be necessary to meaningfully raise blood vitamin D levels.

According to the National Institutes of Health, vitamin D plays many important roles in the body. It promotes calcium absorption and is needed for bone growth and bone healing and helps protect older adults from osteoporosis.  It also influences cell growth, neuromuscular and immune function, and reduces inflammation.

You can learn more about this article at:http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/lose-weight-boost-your-vitamin-d-levels

Healthy Weight

Healthy Weight

Shaklee 180™ Energizing Tea Green Matcha Flavor

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Why Branding Obesity as a Disease Is a Step in the WRONG Direction

Why Branding Obesity as a Disease Is a Step in the WRONG Direction

 

Exposing food industry secrets and strategies designed to keep you coming back for more, it reveals why so many are suffering with weight issues and poor health despite their best intentions.

The importance of this topic cannot be overstated, especially in light of recent developments.

In mid-June, the American Medical Association (AMA) declared obesity a disease, officially opening the door for a range of medical interventions to “treat” this modern scourge. Yet the root causes of obesity remain wholly ignored…

As reported by USA Today:2

“Experts in obesity have struggled for years to have obesity recognized as a disease that deserves medical attention and insurance coverage as do other diseases. Previously, the AMA and others have referred to obesity as ‘a major public health problem.’

‘The American Medical Association’s recognition that obesity is a disease carries a lot of clout,’ says Samuel Klein, director of the Center for Human Nutrition at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

‘The most important aspect of the AMA decision is that the AMA is a respected representative of American medicine. Their opinion can influence policy makers who are in a position to do more to support interventions and research to prevent and treat obesity.'”

We don’t need to throw billions of dollars into drug-based obesity treatment and prevention research. Well-educated nutritional experts already KNOW what’s causing obesity and how to fix the problem!

The truth is that the processed food industry needs to change, agricultural subsidies need to be updated to promote healthier fare, and the public needs to be told the truth about nutrition.

We also need to stop the dangerous marketing of junk food to children with their favorite cartoon characters or celebrities. Junk food companies know exactly what they are doing, and many children are pointing towards these unforgettable characters in the grocery aisles before they can speak.

Yet none of these factors are being addressed. Instead, money is being spent on obesity drugs and obesity vaccines, of all things! This truly is madness, if you ask me. Obesity is no more a disease than smoking is.

Who Benefits from Obesity Being Declared a Disease?

As Rob Kall, executive editor and publisher of OpEdNews.com3 recently stated:

“What is clear to me is that the medical profession, in an unholy alliance with corporations, is moving the healing profession further and further down the slippery slope of pathologization, just as psychiatry is doing. Cui bono is a question I like to ask—Who benefits?”

I believe it’s fair to assume that the biggest beneficiaries will be pharmaceutical companies, along with medical institutions at large. Meanwhile, it’s highly doubtful that their inventions will make a real dent. I would not be surprised if the medical treatment of obesity turns into another “war on cancer” fiasco.

Instead of focusing on low-cost lifestyle changes that address the root cause, the “pathologization” of obesity, to use Kall’s word, is only going to lead to more problems, not to mention drive health care costs skyward as expensive drug treatments are introduced and paid for by insurance companies.

Can You Really Cure Obesity with a Vaccine?

Last summer, media outlets circulated the news that not just one, but two obesity vaccines were in the works, which makes the AMA’s decision to recognize obesity as a disease all the more convenient. Additionally, two brand new obesity drugs are now being unveiled, just in time for the AMA’s decision. Amazing how such coincidences just “happen,” isn’t it?

As explained by GlobalResearch.org,4 one of the obesity vaccines would target the peptide hormone somatostatin. This hormone has an inhibitory effect on the action of human growth hormone (HGH) and insulin-growth factor (IGF), both of which increase metabolism. By engineering a vaccine to remove the chemical inhibition of somatostatin on HGH and IGF, and create antibodies against somatostatin, the researchers believe weight loss could be achieved.

“…[T]he drug corporations see the obesity market as an untapped monetary resource – as one executive explained:‘Can you imagine the potential for vaccines?‘ Globalresearch.org writes.

‘A study published in the Journal of Animal Science and Biotechnology claims that vaccines are the answer to the chemical and psychological issues that surround obesity. The co-author of the study was also the president and chief scientific officer of a company called Braasch Biotech LLC… which specializes in the development of human and animal vaccines. Essentially, by inhibiting natural hormones, researchers hope to stop people from eating…

Because somatostatin is secreted in the digestive system, the hormone would eventually be carried to the brain where it would have a great likelihood of interacting with the chemical makeup of the brain and thereby have an encompassing psychological reaction.’”

Another route being investigated is a vaccine that targets the hunger hormone ghrelin. In my view, the whole idea of an obesity vaccine is nothing short of insanity.

Remember the old nursery rhyme about the old lady who swallowed the fly and in turn swallowed a spider to catch it? Modern medicine appears to use the same mistaken strategy for addressing many of our health care concerns. Take this drug for that symptom, take another drug to take care of the side effects from the first drug, and it goes on and on – until, well you know how it ends.

They truly do not know what they’re meddling with… Case in point: In September of last year, The Atlantic5 published findings that put a serious damper on the anti-ghrelin vaccine theory, as researchers discovered that knocking out ghrelin leads to an exaggerated anxiety response to stress.6 As reported by The Atlantic:7

“[T]his is the first study8 to show that ghrelin ‘prevents a hyperactive, over-anxious response to acute stress.’ So the reduced appetite caused by ghrelin suppression might come at the cost of increased anxiety…

The authors point out that an evolutionary response to stress is to eat more, hypothesizing that ‘under conditions of acute stress, ghrelin limits excessive anxious behavior by promoting the feeling of reward to ensure appropriate food-seeking behavior and maintain energy homeostasis.’ With enough stress, compensatory eating could end up counteracting the vaccine’s effects, leaving us right back where we started.”

Two New Prescription Diet Drugs Now Available

As of June, a new diet drug sold under the name Belviq is available by prescription to patients with a body mass index (BMI) above 30, or a BMI of 27 with at least one weight-related condition, such as hypertension or type 2 diabetes. The drug works by activating serotonin receptors in your brain, which is thought to reduce feelings of hunger—although it sounds awfully similar to the action of certain antidepressants, known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, which boost serotonin levels and are fraught with dangerous side effects, including suicide.

The release of Belviq comes on the heels of another prescription weight-loss drug called Qsymia, which was released last September. As reported by CNN Health:9

“Weight loss with both drugs is modest. Patients in clinical trials went from an average 227 pounds to 204 pounds on Qsymia; on Belviq, the average weight dropped from 220 to 207… At the time of approval, the FDA said Belviq’s manufacturer, Arena Pharmaceuticals, would be required to conduct six post-marketing studies, including a long-term cardiovascular trial to assess the risk of heart attack and stroke.

The most common side effects of Belviq in nondiabetic patients included headache, dizziness and fatigue, according to the FDA. In diabetic patients, side effects included pain and low blood sugar. In addition, some people taking medicines such as Belviq have reported heart valve problems, according to Eisai Inc., which markets the drug. ‘It is not known if Belviq changes your risk of heart problems or of stroke, or death due to heart problems or stroke,’ according to the drug’s website.”10

Why on earth would you take a weight loss drug that might lead to increased heart attack or stroke risk when the appropriate dietary and lifestyle changes would REDUCE those risks right along with the weight you drop? Not to mention you’d be paying a lot more for the drug than you would pay for healthier foods.

How to Safely and Effectively Combat Excess Weight

For the majority of people, severely restricting carbohydrates such as sugars, fructose, and grains in your diet will be the key to sustained weight loss. Refined carbohydrates like breakfast cereals, bagels, waffles, pretzels, and most other processed foods quickly break down to sugar, increase your insulin levels, and cause insulin resistance, which is the number one underlying factor of nearly every chronic disease and condition known to man, including weight gain.

As you cut these dietary villains from your meals, you need to replace them with healthy substitutes like vegetables and healthy fats (including natural saturated fats!). I’ve detailed a step-by-step guide to this type of healthy eating program in mycomprehensive nutrition plan, and I urge you to consult this guide if you are trying to lose weight.

Additionally, a growing body of evidence shows that intermittent fasting is particularly effective for losing weight.

One of the mechanisms that makes intermittent fasting so effective for weight loss is the fact that it provokes the natural secretion of human growth hormone (HGH), which is a fat-burning hormone—essentially the same effect sought by the obesity vaccine discussed above, but without the potential health risks. Fasting also increases catecholamines, which increases resting energy expenditure, while decreasing insulin levels, which allows stored fat to be burned for fuel.

Together, these and other factors will turn you into an effective fat-burning machine. Hence, if like many tens of millions of people, your goal is to shed excess fat, fasting can be both effective and beneficial for improving many disease markers.

Keep in mind that food cravings are a sign that you’re not providing your body with proper nutrients in the appropriate ratios, so following your hunger can in many cases be staggeringly counterproductive. Instead, view your cravings for what they are: a sign from your body that you’re not feeding it properly, and make the necessary adjustments. More often than not, people are not consuming enough healthy fats, which provide a more sustained form of energy compared to carbs. I believe most people may need between 50-70 percent of their daily calories in the form of healthful fats, such as avocados, organic pastured eggs, coconut oil, raw organic butter, and raw nuts like macadamia.

The foods you choose to eat, and how much you eat, will be the driving force behind successfully achieving your weight loss goals — even more so than exercise.

But exercise is still important for weight loss and optimal health. The key to boosting weight loss and getting the most out of your exercise routine is to make sure to incorporate high-intensity, short-burst-type exercises, such as my Peak Fitness Program, two to three times per week. Several studies have confirmed that exercising in shorter bursts with rest periods in between burns more fat than exercising continuously for an entire session.

To learn more about this article go to: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/07/06/branding-obesity.aspx

Healthy Weight

Healthy Weight

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Vitamin D (and thus Sunshine) Reduces Risk of Becoming Obese

Vitamin D (and thus Sunshine) Reduces Risk of Becoming Obese

Vitamin D (and thus Sunshine) Reduces Risk of Becoming Obese

A new study by researchers from Spain’s University of Carlos Malaga has determined that a deficiency of vitamin D leads to an increased risk of obesity. This supports the findings of previous research that indicate a clear link between vitamin D levels and obesity.

The Spanish researchers followed 1,226 adult human subjects initially, including 988 of those subjects through six years later, and then 961 subjects through another three years later. In total, 961 subjects were followed through the entire eleven years of the study, from 1996 through 2007.

The researchers analyzed each subjects’ body mass index, weight, height, waist and hip measurements, along with fasting blood glucose levels, vitamin D status and other blood analyses. They also conducted oral glucose tests each year on the subjects.

The researchers measured blood levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D along with intact-parathyroid hormone (iPTH) levels. (Hyperparathyroidism can also produce low levels of vitamin D, so this possibility was screened).

Serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D that were below or equal to 20 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) were qualified as being deficient in vitamin D. This is consistent with the Endocrine Society standards.

Learn more about vitamin D, health from the sun and the many other benefits of sunshine.

A direct relationship between existing obesity and vitamin D deficiency was not established in this study. The researchers did find, however, that 39% of obese subjects were deficient in vitamin D at the second testing, compared to 33% deficient among non-obese subjects. This difference was considered not significant enough to make a broad conclusion.

However, when the standard of vitamin D deficiency was reduced to 17 ng/ml from 20 ng/ml, there was a definite and significant relationship between being deficient in vitamin D and becoming obese within the next four years. Those who had less than 17 ng/ml of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in their blood during the testing had more than double (2.35 times) the incidence of becoming obese in the next four years than those who had 17 ng/ml or greater levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the bloodstream.

In their discussion the researchers stated clearly:

“The results of the present study suggest that lower 25-hydroxyvitamin D values in obese subjects may not have been secondary to obesity, but may in fact precede obesity.”

Other studies have also found that obesity is related to low vitamin D levels. A 2010 study from Norway’s University of Tromsø studied 10,229 people and then followed 2,656 people for fourteen years. Their results concluded that increased body mass index was directly associated with lower vitamin D levels. The Norway researchers also found that:

“The very obese need higher vitamin D doses than lean subjects to achieve the same serum 25(OH)D levels.”

While vitamin D can be supplemented, one of the easiest and cheapest ways to produce adequate levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D is by safe sun exposure.

Written by Case Adams, Naturopath

You can learn more about this article at: http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/vitamin-d-and-thus-sunshine-reduces-risk-becoming-obese

Healthy Weight

Healthy Weight

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The Western Diet As A Lethal, Pandemic Cause of Disease

The Western Diet As A Lethal, Pandemic Cause of Disease

The Western Diet As A Lethal, Pandemic Cause of Disease

Emerging research indicates that the Western diet could rightly be considered a ‘Disease Vector’ on par with influenza and other infectious diseases.

The CDC likes to track disease vectors like influenza and hepatitis, but the concept that immune status determines susceptibility, or the vital role that diet or environmental factors such as sunlight-mediated vitamin D levels play in whether you contract an illness or not, is mostly ignored by them.

It could be argued that the CDC would be far more effective in their mission of “Collaborating to create the expertise, information, and tools that people and communities need to protect their health” if they paid equal attention tracking dietary vectors of disease creation, such as per capita high-fructose corn syrup or happy meal consumption, or environmental chemical exposures, instead of myopically fixating on an outdated, though hugely profitable germ-centered model of disease causation.

Take the Western diet, for instance, which is increasingly the subject of preclinical and clinical investigation as a disease vector disturbingly effective at generating disease within the human body.

At GreenMedInfo.com, one of the 126 “Problematic Actions” we have indexed is the “Western Diet,” which has been found to cause over 20 distinct disease states or adverse health effects, including various lethal cancers.  Here is a list of the Western diet linked diseases:

  • Breast Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Colon Cancer
  • Inflammation
  • Lipid Peroxidation
  • Sperm Count and Quality
  • Osteoporosis
  • Acne
  • Bone Fractures
  • Cardiac Hypertrophy
  • Dybios
  • Escherichia coli Infections
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Intestinal Permeability
  • Liver Disease
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Sepsis
  • Type 1 Diabetes

Recently, we highlighted a human clinical study where participants were given a regular, all-American meal of a hamburger, quickly resulting in pathological changes to the blood vessels including vasoconstriction, oxidative stress and inflammation.1 Simply adding a hefty side of avocado to this “disease vector” canceled the observed adverse cardiovascular effects.  If the addition of a little raw avocado can do this, imagine what would happen if people ate completely different, following in the ancient, health-promoting dietary traditions of China or India?

So, what is the archetypal Western pattern diet? Generally, it is characterized by the intake of GMO-grain fed animal products, sugary desserts (mostly produced from GMO corn producedhigh fructose corn syrup), copious quantities of oxidized vegetable oils rich in pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids, from you guessed it: GMO corn, soy, cottonseed or canola oil, and finally refined grain products, featuring wheat, whose dark side includes over 200 clinically confirmed adverse health effects.

Keep in mind that, historically, food has been one of the primary tools of biological and cultural imperialism. The story of wheat’s role in driving humankind through the cultural event horizon of the Paleolithic to Neolithic transition, as well as expanding and securing Roman rule throughout the ancient world (which we explored in the Dark Side of Wheat), for instance, speaks to the power of certain foods we depend on to concretize and maintain socio-economic and even psychological power structures. How many countries, for instance, has the US waged war against that already had McDonald or Starbucks franchises in place?

As the World Health Organization uses the lapdog-like global mainstream media apparatus to ramp up expectation for a new pandemic ‘bird flu’ virus, folks need to take a sober look at what’s at the end of their forks. When we continue to eat food that is already vectorized with transgenes designed to kill insect life, and has been demonstrated to be lethal to animal life, should we be surprised that will be more likely to contract fatal infectious diseases? The inner ‘soil’ will largely determine what grows there.  If it is organic, nutrient replete, non-toxic, it will give rise to health.  If it is devoid of the correct nutrients, overly-cooked, irradiated, infected with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, etc., it will give rise to disease. And there is no vaccine to prevent, or drug to treat, the adverse consequences associated with these basic dietary choices.

1 GreenMedInfo.com, Avocado: The Fat So Good It Makes Hamburger Less Bad

You can read more about this article at: http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/western-diet-lethal-pandemic-cause-disease-1

Healthy Weight

Healthy Weight

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