The Luteal Phase Of Your Cycle Is The Time To Optimize Sleep
In one study, as little as 4 days of sleeping less than 5 hours per night increased insulin resistance by 30% in healthy individuals.
Multiple studies showed that sleeping less than 5 hours per night significantly increased body weight. For every hour less than 8 hours of sleep, the expected difference in weight compared to an adult who got 8 hours was about 3 pounds.
This is huge because so many of us are chronically sleep deprived! And since we are prone to having blood sugar imbalances in the second half of our cycle, then this is a critical time to WORK that sleep schedule. No more burning the candle at both ends in the second half of our cycle, because it is contributing to weight gain!
How To Lose Weight During Menopause
So what if the days of a 28-day cycle are behind you and youre entering that not-so-fun time of life when hot flashes and mood swings creep in? Yep, menopause can bring with it some unpleasant side effects, one of which can be weight gain. BUT, there are things you can do to prevent menopausal weight gain, including the following:
- Strength Train, Strength Train, Strength Train. Do we sound like a broken record yet? Good! Because the BEST thing you can do for your body as you age is strength train. Building muscle is the key to a revved up metabolism and burning more calories at rest. If you want to lose weight, youre going to need to build muscle.
What Causes Hormone Imbalances
Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that can affect the natural cycle of hormones. These sneaky guys can pretend to be a receptor for a hormone or block the hormones pathway altogether.
The results are out-of-whack body systems and hormone imbalances.
A hormone imbalance can also occur from an unhealthy lifestyle, like a poor diet or lack of activity. Of course, natural body changes that occur with aging, like menopause, can also be culprits.
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Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Restores Hormone Balance
A sure way to reverse the effect of a hormone imbalance on your weight is to restore your hormones back to normal levels. The great thing about regaining your hormone balance is that it does more than help you lose weight it also helps to reverse and prevent the multitude of health problems that arise due to low hormones.
Here at BioAge Health, you receive personal attention and customized hormone replacement. We review your medical history and run advanced lab tests to determine your hormone levels. If you have any imbalances, your hormone therapy is individually developed to replace the precise amount and type of hormones you need.
Dr. Kodama prescribes SottoPelle® bioidentical hormone replacement therapy for several reasons. Bioidentical hormones are identical to those produced by your body, so they exert the same effect. Additionally, the hormones in your SottoPelle therapy are made from natural botanicals.
While youre on bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, we routinely check your hormone levels to be sure you maintain optimal, healthy levels.
Do you want to learn whether a hormone imbalance factors into your weight gain? Call BioAge Health or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment.
Diets That Have A Positive Effect On Insulin
Back in the day, the Adkins Diet seemed like a miracle when people who did this diet lost lots of weight even though they were eating a lot of meat and fat.
It wasnt a miracle. It was science.
That kind of diet kept insulin levels low and the body could finally access its fat stores.
People were able to effectively lose weight. However, as with all diets, people had trouble keeping the weight off and many went on to gain the weight back.
These days, the Keto Diet, has replaced the Adkins Diet for this type of eating. Some versions of this are very strict and probably not great for long-term use.
I mention these diets because they illustrate two things:
Its not the amount of fat you eat that makes you fat. Both diets allow plenty of fat.
Both diets keep insulin production low and that promotes weight loss.
The problem I see with both, is that many people use them primarily for weight loss as opposed to nutrition.
Weight loss in itself is pointless if creating health in your body is not a primary goal.
This is probably the most important thing I can tell you.
- Losing weight at a cost to your health always backfires.
- Losing weight in a way that is not sustainable doesnt create long-term positive results.
So, what does create positive long-term results of weight loss and healthy hormone function?
- Eating real food.
Insulin has a huge job in the body. When you eat, it is released from the pancreas to handle and transport the glucose from your blood.
What Is Hormonal Weight Gain
Hormones are chemical signals that control a wide variety of different functions in the body. Hormones influence everything from stress levels and mood, growth, sleep, reproduction, and yes, weight and appetite.
An imbalance in the hormone levels in your body, whether it is too many or too few, may cause a number of changes to your body and daily function. When looking at hormones and weight gain, these conditions may be worth discussing with your doctor:
A Daily Battle With The Bathroom Scale Can Cause Shame Judgment Suffering And Obsession With Weightcontributing Further To Weight Loss Resistance
Even worse, the drill-sergeant approach of restricted eating and harsh exercise can escalate hormonal and emotional problems. A daily battle with the bathroom scale can cause shame, judgment, suffering, and obsession with weightcontributing further to weight loss resistance. When meals are accompanied by guilt, suffering, or anxiety about our food or our bodies a physiologic stress response is activated, triggering a fight-or-flight reaction and raising cortisol.
How do you reset your hormones, or jump-start your metabolism? Can you do it through diet alone?
The best way to get your hormones back on track and reinstate a healthy weight is to correct hormonal misfires with changes to the way you eat, move, think, and supplement. Start with diet: In my experience, 80 percent of weight loss is determined by the hormone/food interaction, so you want to eat in a way that optimizes your hormones. Heres my priority list:
CHANGE THE WAY YOU EAT AND DRINK. Remove processed foods, refined carbohydrates, sugars and sugar substitutes from your diet. Eliminate alcohol for 21 days .
TAKE SUPPLEMENTS TO IMPROVE YOUR HORMONE LEVELS. Here are a few of my favorites:
What causes hormones to go haywire? Is it the natural aging process, stress, having babiesis there a primary culprit?
The main culprits of haywire hormones are:
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How To Balance Insulin For Weight Loss:
One small step you can take is by starting the day drinking filtered water with two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. This will help you regulate your blood sugar first thing in the morning.
If apple cider vinegar sounds too harsh for you, ease into it or at least drink 16 oz of water every morning before you eat or drink anything else.
This acts as a natural body flush.
Other ways to naturally balance your insulin levels include:
- Getting enough protein with every meal
- Eating smaller, healthy meals more often
- Eating low-glycemic carbs
- Eliminating added sugars from your diet
The bottom line is this: if youve been struggling to lose weight but cant figure out what youre doing wrong, your hormones may be to blame.
You can ask your doctor to test your hormones, as well as use the above information to try different techniques to bring suspected problem hormones back into balance.
Its your body, and you should know everything you can to not only lose weight but feel happy, healthy and whole.
What Influences Appetite And Weight
When Estrogen Drops, Hunger Increases
A decrease in estrogen levels during a woman’s monthly cycle may trigger mood changes in some women. Some females may reach for comfort foods that are high in fat, calories, sugar, and salt in an effort to feel better. Sadly, eating these foods backfires and makes women feel worse. Sodium increases water retention and bloating. Sugar, excess fat and calories will lead you to pack on the pounds. Falling estrogen levels also affect leptin, a hormone that inhibits hunger. Combat hormonal weight gain by adopting a healthy diet and exercise plan. Stick to lean meats, healthy fats, complex carbs, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables to help prevent PMS and encourage healthy blood sugar levels and weight loss.
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Hormonal Imbalance And Fatigue
Fatigue is a common symptom that may have many potential underlying causes. Just as too little progesterone can make it hard to sleep, too much progesterone can make you more tired. Another common hormonal imbalance that causes fatigue is low thyroid hormone levels . This condition is easily diagnosed with a blood test. If your levels are low, you can take prescription medication to bring your levels back up to normal. Regardless of any hormone imbalance that may exist, practice good sleep hygiene to optimize your sleep. This involves going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on the weekends. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and exercise from the late afternoon on to avoid interfering with sleep. Establish a relaxing nighttime routine to give your body the message that it’s time for sleep. Take a warm bath, sip a cup of chamomile tea, or listen to relaxing music.
Testosterone Builds Fitness And Lean Mass
As a regular reader of SpotMeGirl youll know how much we value the role of testosterone for athletic women who want to develop a sexier, leaner body with toned muscle and no huge mass.
Women who have optimal levels of testosterone also have:
- More energy and endurance
- Better strength and lean mass
- Lower levels of body fat
- More confidence
- Fewer mood swings during their period
Normal levels of testosterone for women is a low 25-70 ng.dL thats nearly 15 times lower than a man, and one of the reasons why women cant build muscle mass like men can.
With 90% of women over 45 suffering from low testosterone levels, its a hormone that needs boosting. The biggest drop in natural anabolic hormone levels occurs between 20 and 40 years of age.
Discover our top T-boosters for women here:
Weight training has been shown in numerous research studies to elevate testosterone levels, especially during late follicular and ovulatory phases when the hormone is elevated already.
In fact, many women chasing PRs on big lifts such as the bench press or squat attempt a new record between days 10-15 of their cycle to try and use the natural spike in testosterone to their advantage.
When it comes to weight training and female hormones, testosterone is hugely important.
Key Points on testosterone:
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But Theres A Twist Our Adrenals Also Produce A Hormone Called Dhea
While cortisol provides our bodies with a boost to help meet whatever challenge were facing, DHEA boosts how our brain functions to help us learn from the stressful situation we are in, and become stronger so that we can better deal with similar situations in the future.
DHEA reduces the effects of cortisol and vice versa, so if cortisol levels are high, DHEA levels are correspondingly low.
DHEA is a foundational building block for the sex hormones. Without it, our bodies could not produce essential hormones like testosterone or estrogen. In addition, DHEA has been shown to improve heart disease, dementia, immune deficiency, cancer, and osteoporosis. DHEA peaks around age 25 and declines as we get older, which is why I call it the fountain of youth hormone.
These counter-effects on cortisol make DHEA a helpful friend when it comes to weight loss. DHEA instructs fat cells to stop taking in the energy that cortisol has told them to store, which causes these cells to reduce in size, reversing the weight gain effect of cortisol that I just mentioned. DHEA also improves insulin sensitivity, further enhancing its weight loss ability.
When were stressed to the max and not doing anything to mitigate the effects of that stress, our DHEA drops and subsequently our sex hormones drop. This causes period and fertility problems, and weight gain.
A Neat Way To Burn Calories
Many trainers get too focused on the calories clients burn during their training session and forget about how much they move the rest of the day . This other energy expenditure is called nonexercise activity thermogenesis , and it actually makes up the bulk of calories burned in a days activity.
If your clients are sedentary, ensuring theyre getting enough movement during the day should be a top priority. The suggestion for 10,000 steps is a great place to start. In the short term, apps or fitness trackers can be very effective tools for showing clients how inactive they truly are.
It can take 812 weeks to build new movement habits. Walking to work, taking the stairs, parking as far away from the entrance as possible , or doing a daily or nightly walk with friends or loved ones are all great ways to add more movement into the day.
If you want more context on NEAT, read this resourcenext!
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Understand How Insulin Impacts Weight
Insulin is one of the most important hormones when it comes to weight loss and weight gain. Made by the pancreas, insulin is responsible for storing blood sugar, or utilizing it, depending upon your bodys needs of the moment. After you eat a large meal, a substantial amount of insulin releases itself into the bloodstream. It also enters the bloodstream as needed throughout the day, ensuring that blood sugar levels remain stable.
Another key function of this essential hormone is fat storage. Insulin decides how much fat to store, and how much to convert for energy expenditure. Chronically high levels of insulin can lead to a condition known as insulin resistance, which is linked to an uptick in blood sugar as well as continued elevated insulin levels.
Preventing this insulin imbalance is crucial, as it leads to weight gain, and eventually type 2 diabetes. When insulin levels remain high over an extended period of time, obesity and metabolic syndrome are often the unfortunate outcome.
Weight Loss: How Hormones Affect Weight Loss In Women
Have you been struggling to lose weight? If so, then you might want to learn how hormones are connected to weight loss. Hormones are chemical messengers that affect nearly every system in the body. They regulate nearly every aspect of our bodys mental and physical functions. Read on to discover how exercise can turn the bodys weight loss hormone into a powerful weapon in the battle to lose weight.
Growth hormone is released by the pituitary gland and increases production during aerobic exercises. It decreases the bodys use of glucose as an energy source by using body fat instead. Growth hormone also improves the strength of bones, muscles, and tendons.
Testosterone is an important hormone in males and females. Females have approximately 10% of the amounts of testosterone as men but it still plays a critical role in muscle tone, metabolism, and decreased body fat. To increase testosterone in the blood cut out processed foods and exercise at least three times per week. Testosterone increases after about 20 minutes of exercise.
Estrogen increases the bodys ability to break down body fat as well as increasing the bodys resting metabolic rate. Ovaries begin to produce less estrogen as women reach menopause. Exercise increases estrogen levels in the blood stream and can remain at those levels for up to four hours post workout.
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Lose Weight This Year With The Help Of Hormone Replacement Therapy
If youre determined to lose weight this year, you should know that diet and exercise arent always the answer. Sometimes you can diligently exercise and watch calories, yet still fail to drop those pesky pounds.
Your struggle to lose weight may be the result of a hormone imbalance thats sabotaging your efforts. Here at BioAge Health, weve helped many patients in Eagan and the Twin City area of Minnesota successfully lose weight by restoring their natural hormones.
As a board-certified bioidentical hormone specialist and weight loss specialist, Dr. Catherine Kodama works closely with each patient, providing support and exceptional help with hormone deficiencies that contribute to weight gain.
Other Hormones That Impact Weight Loss
As important as cortisol is to hormonal balance and weight loss, its certainly not the only hormone to have an effect on weight. Lets take a quick look at some other important players.
Insulin regulates the amount of glucose that can be absorbed by your cells. When insulin levels arent right, or your body cant produce insulin as needed, insulin resistance can result. What that means is that the glucose made by the food you eat cant be properly absorbed. But your body has to do something with this extra blood sugar, so your liver converts the glucose to fat.
Leptin is a hormone directly connected to appetite. Leptin carries the message Im full to your brain, which in turn sends out the signal to stop eating. When you have too much leptin circulating, however, you may find yourself constantly hungry, eating too much or too often, and consequently gaining weight. Thats because your brain cant keep up with the constant flood of leptin. Receptors stop working, the full signal is missed, and you just keep eating.
Thyroid hormones and metabolism are intimately connected. The more thyroid hormones your body produces, the faster youll burn calories. So if youre suffering from hypothyroidism, where your thyroid gland cant produce enough thyroid hormones, your metabolism will slow. This can cause you to gain weight along with a host of other uncomfortable symptoms.
Estrogen and Progesterone
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