Last newsletter I talked about a few different diets and how eating foods that you were allergic to would cause your body to hold false fat. This time, let's look at a few other problems you run into when trying to get that new slimmer you. Losing weight is a counter-intuitive process for most of us with a weight problem. Many of us stop eating or go to one meal a day. Actually eating 4-6 meals helps weight loss while starving or eating only once a day mostly burns up our muscles and makes us fatter in the long run.
In the attempt to get skinnier we start exercising more. Of course if a little is good then more is always better, right? Well unfortunately if you over-train your body your adrenals start to produce more cortisol and you get fatter not thinner. The more out of shape you are the slower you need to go with your exercise program. You also need to allow more time to recuperate. Rest is the forgotten element in most exercise regimes. Also frequency is more important than duration in the beginning. Your better off, for most exercise beginners, to walk 10 minutes 3 times a day then to walk for 30 minutes straight. You can gradually increase your time for each walk. If you have already been exercising for 60 minutes, 3 times per week, try 30 minutes twice a day instead. Even low, sub-aerobic exercise helps burn more calories than sitting around. Weightlifting also helps build muscle which then burns more fat. I would suggest keeping the weightlifting to high reps and light weights until you get to your ideal weight.
If you have a weak thyroid, hormone imbalances, systemic yeast, parasites, overworked adrenals, electromagnetic field poisoning, etc. you will have a hard time losing weight. These are easily found and fixed in our office so come in and get checked out if you have been trying to lose weight and can't.
In Good Company
The latest report shows that 1/3 of all adults in this country are now obese and nearly 2/3 are overweight. The authors attribute it to larger portions (super sized please!), eating out too much and not exercising. It's funny they never mentioned the poor food quality found in most snacks and fast foods. And then there is the ton of sugar we consume in soft drinks and sport drinks. In the 60's the obesity rate was around 13-14%. By the end of the 80's it was at 25% and now its 33%. Exercise levels in the 80's were much higher than in the 60's and stayed about the same in the 90's. So the meteoric rise in obesity wasn't really about exercise. What really changed to make us all fatter?
Two decades ago this country went "Fat Phobic" and replaced all good healthy natural fats and oils with sugar and killer trans-fatty acids. Most low fat "diet" food and "health" food has been laced with high fructose corn syrup to give it some taste. We have been told to give up our eggs and eat bagels and "Special K" for breakfast. Grains are king and meats are killers.In 1972 Dr. Atkins, a cardiologist, came out with his diet that said eat all the fat and protein you need and go easy on the carbohydrates. Since his diet flew in the face of what the government was trying to force on us as truth, it has been under attack for years. Now 30 years later, Atkins' book is still a best seller and it appears he has finally been vindicated. In a New York Times article dated 7/24/02 called What If It's All Been a Big Fat Lie? by Gary Taubes, (http://www.mercola.com/2002/jul/24/carbs1.htm) shows that all of the research over the past 20 years has really vindicated Atkins and has never substantiated the high carb, low fat theory.
When Atkins first published his ''Diet Revolution'' in 1972, Americans were just coming to terms with the proposition that fat -- particularly the saturated fat of meat and dairy products -- was the primary nutritional evil in the American diet... The perversity of this alternative hypothesis is that it identifies the cause of obesity as precisely those refined carbohydrates at the base of the famous Food Guide Pyramid -- the pasta, rice and bread -- that we are told should be the staple of our healthy low-fat diet, and then on the sugar or corn syrup in the soft drinks, fruit juices and sports drinks that we have taken to consuming in quantity if for no other reason than that they are fat free and so appear intrinsically healthy. While the low-fat-is-good-health dogma represents reality as we have come to know it, and the government has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in research trying to prove its worth, the low-carbohydrate message has been relegated to the realm of unscientific fantasy... What's forgotten in the current controversy is that the low-fat dogma itself is only about 25 years old. Until the late 70's, the accepted wisdom was that fat and protein protected against overeating by making you sated, and that carbohydrates made you fat... The N.I.H. spent several hundred million dollars trying to demonstrate a connection between eating fat and getting heart disease and, despite what we might think, it failed. Five major studies revealed no such link. So we have all been part of a huge social experiment that has failed miserably in helping us to achieve better health. It has successfully brainwashed most of us into still believing that fat is bad. One of the big mistakes I see people make, who are trying to lose weight, is avoiding fat at all cost. Not only does this inhibit real fat loss; it is also very hard on your gallbladder. I see patients suddenly develop acute gallbladder attacks when the fat intake in a person's diet is nearly eliminated or when too much alcohol is consumed.I have to confess that I too had been somewhat brainwashed by the Atkins bashing that I had read. Since I see and treat a lot of chronic yeast infections, I didn't like his inclusion of cheese on the diet. My perception was that it was a meat and cheese diet and no one can live on that forever. I also knew that many of my patients are allergic to dairy and cheese so that would never work. Well if you read his book, Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution, he addresses all of those issues and even how to do his diet as a vegetarian. I found that I really didn't have much to quarrel with in his book. His premise is based on hyperinsulin levels found in overweight people creates the situation where eating carbs make you fat. Eating fat makes you burn fat and that makes you thin. Skinny people don't have this hyperinsulin problem so they can eat carbs and not get fat. The secret is to discover your own level of tolerance for carbohydrates.
Atkins starts you out on the Induction Phase for 2 weeks that limits you to about 20 grams of carbs each day. You can have all the protein and fat in your diet you need to satisfy your appetite. After 2 days on this program you will start into Benign Dietary Ketosis. That is where your body is no longer using sugar as it's main fuel source but you are now using stored fat as your fuel. Isn't that a fat guy's dream?!! Ketosis is the shortened name of lipolysis/ketosis, a normal body process that occurs when you burn fat. You can't burn up fat without making ketones. Unfortunately, BDK has been confused with ketoacidosis, a life-threatening condition that affects diabetics and alcoholics whose blood sugar levels are sky high. BDK comes from a lack of sugar in the diet but yet does not cause hypoglycemia. If you are losing fat, your body will make ketones and if you are losing a lot of fat you will be able to measure those ketones in your urine. That's the fun part because you can measure this ketosis with testing strips to make sure you're doing the diet correctly. You can also create a state of BDK by fasting.When I tested the induction phase it took 2 1/2 days for my body to start BDK and then after a week it quit. I found out I wasn't eating enough fat to keep my body in fat burning so I started eating more fat and less lean meat. Talk about counter-intuitive! Within 2 days it started up again and is still going strong. I have to admit that I was never hungry during this phase and that it is fun to see your weight and inches drop while eating rich foods. Also, after the first two days your food cravings will disappear and your energy levels will go up. Constipation can be a problem at times so keep your Herbal Lax or Intestinal Formula One handy.
Up the Carbs Again
The next phase is the Ongoing Weight Loss (OWL) where you start increasing your carbs slowly and see what your body can handle and still be in BDK. For most people it is a chance to add back more veggies and maybe even some fruit. For people that are classified as highly metabolic resistant, this may not be much of an increase if any. You will stay on this level until you get near your target weight and then you will go into the Pre-Maintenance and then the Maintenance phase. It still just a matter of figuring out how many carbs you can eat and continue to lose or maintain your weight. For those that still believe that ketosis is dangerous, I know of a doctor who has been in a state of ketosis daily for over 13 years. Once you are in Maintenance you are out of BDK.
Oh My Heart!
But what about your arteries with all that meat and fat and cholesterol? Remember that Atkins is a Cardiologist by training and his diet was developed to help his patients lower their cholesterol and triglyceride levels as well as their blood pressure. It also helps increase the HDL's and lower the LDL's because it is treating the major cause of high blood fats, hyperinsulinemia. Hyperinsulinemia occurs when too much insulin is released in response to carbohydrate ingestion. Several studies of primitive cultures around the world showed that diabetes, cancer, ulcers, hypertension, colitis, gallbladder disease, etc. are virtually nonexistent until the introduction of sugar. From his research Dr. Cleave came up with "The Rule of 20 Years". That was the length of time it took for those diseases to develop in a group after sugar and refined carbs were added to the diet.
You are a candidate for a heart attack if you are suffering from the "Deadly Quartet" of upper body obesity, glucose intolerance, high triglycerides and hypertension. All of which are caused by hyperinsulinemia. Next newsletter I'll talk more about blood fats and health but for now, if the above describes you or someone you love, cut out the carbs and start getting healthy. If you are not sure, you should have your fasting insulin, triglycerides, C-reactive Protein, homocystine, cholesterol and HDL/LDL's tested. High cholesterol by itself is actually a worthless number for assessing your heart's health.With the information in this and the last newsletter you should be able to lose that weight you want to without going crazy in the process. If you are having trouble, then schedule a time to get in here so we can test you and find what is stopping you. Willpower is not much of a factor if you are on the right diet. Actually, almost all weight problems are of a metabolic nature and not due to chronic over-eating. Most obese people eat far less than their skinny friends do. When you are ready to win the battle over weight we can help!