How To Fix Your Hormones And Lose Weight
Ive hit a stubborn weight-loss plateau, writes this weeks house call, even though I seem to be doing everything right, like eating the right foods and exercising. How can I overcome that obstacle?
Ive discussed different reasons for weight-loss resistance in past blogs. Many obstacles have nothing to do with what you eat or how much you exercise. Instead, they involve things like nutritional imbalances, chronic inflammation, metabolic challenges, leaky gut, changes in your microbiome, environmental toxins and your genes.
One huge but often-overlooked reason for weight-loss resistance involves hormonal imbalances.
No contest: The monster hormone that causes weight gain, inflammation and chronic disease is excess insulin. Think of this hormone as your fat cell fertilizer! My new book, Eat Fat, Get Thin, discusses how to naturally regulate insulin so you can shift your body from fat storage mode to fat-burning mode.
At the same time, insulin isnt the only player; other hormones also affect your weight and health. Three big disruptors are: thyroid, cortisol and sex hormones. I discuss these hormones in-depth in The Blood Sugar Solution, however, lets briefly look at each of them here.
A common cause of hypothyroidism is gluten intolerance.
Sex Hormone Imbalances
A Healthy Lifestyle Is The Best Bet
True, some things are just beyond your control. But if you critically consider the discussion on hormones and weight connections so far, you will notice something. An unhealthy lifestyle can lead to a cascade of health complications, imbalanced hormones and hence hormonal weight gain.
Your body has set points and knows how to keep things in check. However, if you push it to extremes, the intrinsic control will fail, and there will be problems.
The best bet then is to live a healthy lifestyle, eat right and exercise regularly.
We would love to hear your thoughts, queries and suggestions. Do share them in the comments below and we will get back as soon as possible.
Drink Water Before Meals
Water is an essential part of your menopause diet plan and getting enough of it can prevent menopause bloating. Drinking cold water seems to work better as the body burns extra calories working to warm it.
Drinking water not only jump-starts your metabolism but gives you an energy boost as well, especially in the late afternoon when most people experience an energy crash.
Studies show that drinking water, especially before meals, can fill you up and raise your metabolism by approximately 30% within 10 minutes of drinking it.
I love to drink a big glass of water first thing in the morning to get everything going. Its like taking a shower on the inside and is one of the best ways to lose weight during menopause.
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Avoid Sugar And Refined Carbs
Sugar and refined carbs have been linked to a number of health problems.
Indeed, avoiding or minimizing these foods may be instrumental in optimizing hormone function and avoiding obesity, diabetes and other diseases.
Studies have consistently shown that fructose can increase insulin levels and promote insulin resistance, especially in overweight and obese people with prediabetes or diabetes (
Diets high in sugar and refined carbs have been shown to drive insulin resistance. Avoiding these foods and reducing overall carb intake may decrease insulin levels and increase insulin sensitivity.
Obesity And Sex Hormones
Body fat distribution plays an important role in the development of obesity-related conditions such as heart disease, stroke and some forms of arthritis. Fat around our abdomen is a higher risk factor for disease than fat stored on our bottom, hips and thighs. It seems that oestrogens and androgens help to decide body fat distribution. Oestrogens are sex hormones made by the ovaries in pre-menopausal women. They are responsible for prompting ovulation every menstrual cycle.;Men and postmenopausal women do not produce much oestrogen in their testes or ovaries. Instead, most of their oestrogen is produced in their body fat, although at much lower amounts than what is produced in pre-menopausal ovaries. In younger men, androgens are produced at high levels in the testes. As a man gets older, these levels gradually decrease.The changes with age in the sex hormone levels of both men and women are associated with changes in body fat distribution. While women of childbearing age tend to store fat in their lower body , older men and postmenopausal women tend to increase storage of fat around their abdomen . Postmenopausal women who are taking oestrogen supplements dont accumulate fat around their abdomen. Animal studies have also shown that a lack of oestrogen leads to excessive weight gain.
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Tools Men Can Use Fighting Weight Gain When Using Adt
Valuable tools for men using ADT to help prevent withering muscle mass and increased weight gain, is to embrace healthy eating and exercise. Research published in the journal Annals of Behavioral Medicine, have found that men using a comprehensive exercise and diet program can make significant strides in beating back fat mass while improving muscle mass and strength.
Giving up cigars and cigarettes is similarly beneficial to adopting a healthy diet, since tobacco smokes toxic effects on the heart are more pronounced in the absence of testosterone.
It has been known for some time that exercise is good for prostate cancer patients and survivors. This study, however, looked at using a group approach towards exercise along with a focus on diet. Researchers with the study found that men working together with other men to fight weight gain when on ADT helped to create a strong social support as they shared their experiences and challenges.
Men who participated using both exercise and diet saw gains in mobility and muscle strength and reductions in fat mass. The exercise regimens were tailored to each mans ability and increased in intensity during the research. Workouts included weight-bearing exercise, such as leg extensions and bicep curls and aerobic exercise on a treadmill, stationary bike or elliptical trainer.
Another study found that taking daily walks and eating a low-carbohydrate diet can also lessen ADTs harms.
How To Prevent Menopause Weight Gain With Diet And Exercise
One of the most distressing side effects of menopause is hormonal weight gain. In this article, youll learn how to prevent menopause weight gain with diet and exercise.
Are you confused by all the menopause advice and weight loss programs that dont seem to work for menopausal women? And what menopause weight gain remedies can you use to maintain a healthy weight during and after menopause?
Menopause weight management is a complicated issue and losing weight during menopause is not easy. During your menopause changes and transition, your body is behaving differently, so it can be especially complicated.
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How To Balance Ghrelin Levels
If you have a sneaking suspicion your ghrelin levels are in need of some TLC, here are a couple of ways to balance them:
- Eat adequate amounts of protein. Protein helps you feel full and should be consumed with every meal. Studies show how eating protein promotes healthy ghrelin levels.
- Avoid sugar as much as possible. As you can see by now, consuming too much sugar disrupts hormonal balance, making weight loss seem an impossible feat. Be sure to read labels. If an item contains high-fructose corn syrup, dont buy it. A 2013 study published in Nutritional Diabetes shows how high-fructose corn syrup is one of the primary culprits of imbalance when it comes to hormones and weight gain.
What Is Leptin Resistance
Because leptin is created your fat cells, people who have more adipose tissue tend to have higher leptin levels circulating in their bodies. As result of this constant high exposure to leptin, they can build up a resistance to it as well as its appetite-suppressing effects. This can cause the brain to think that you still need more food, or are starving, and keep sending you messages to eat after it should stop. When you eat more food than your body needs, you increase leptin even more, and become even more resistant to it. In this way leptin resistance and obesity can become a hard cycle to break.
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Managing Menopause: Tips To Help With Weight Gain Sex Hair Loss And More
Its something natural, but many people dont like to talk about: menopause.
Menopause is the natural end to the menstrual cycle, when the ovaries stop producing estrogen and progesterone. Some will experience menopause naturally, and for others, menopause will result from surgical removal of the ovaries, or because of medical treatments or genetic disorders that stop ovarian function.
The decline of those hormones in the body can cause unpleasant side effects ranging from night sweats to weight gain. No experience is the same. Some will have severe symptoms, while others will only experience mild changes.
The menopause transition doesnt have to be horrible. Because of the bothersome symptoms, often menopause is feared; however, it shouldnt be. Its just a different phase of life. Menopause isnt good or isnt bad, it just is. And for those struggling with symptoms, they shouldnt be afraid to ask their doctor about treatment options. At the University of Chicago Medicine, a custom care plan is created for each individual based on their symptoms, medical history and personal preferences.
Here are answers to some common questions I hear from patients about menopause.
The Role Of Cortisol In The Body
Stress can significantly impact your ability to maintain a healthy weight. It can also prevent you from losing weight. Whether it’s the result of high levels of the stress hormone cortisol, unhealthy stress-induced behaviors, or a combination of the two, the link between stress and weight gain is glaring.
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Natural Ways To Balance Your Hormones
Hormones have profound effects on your mental, physical and emotional health.
These chemical messengers play a major role in controlling your appetite, weight and mood, among other things.
Normally, your endocrine glands produce the precise amount of each hormone needed for various processes in your body.
However, hormonal imbalances have become increasingly common with todays fast-paced modern lifestyle. In addition, certain hormones decline with age, and some people experience a more dramatic decrease than others.
Fortunately, a nutritious diet and other healthy lifestyle behaviors may help improve your hormonal health and allow you to feel and perform your best.
This article will show you 12 natural ways to balance your hormones.
How Are Hormones Responsible For Weight Gain In Women
Ideal body weight is desirable by everyone and what is more, is to have the ability to maintain that. After maintaining an active routine that includes a healthy diet and workout sessions there can be a time when the body may still resist weight loss and may eventually gain weight as well, the reason to which is fluctuation in hormones during various life stages. Moderate rise and fall in hormonal levels are considerably healthy however hormonal imbalance can be due to many reasons such as- when a girl reaches the age of maturity, certain medical conditions, pregnancy, or menopause which causes weight gain. Various hormones play a crucial role in determining ones weight .
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Macronutrient Composition Of Meals
The macronutrient composition of meals is one variable that may contribute to excessive caloric intake under ad libitum conditions resulting in unwanted weight gain and the onset of obesity. The postprandial endocrine response associated with meals of varying macronutrient proportions may give some insight as to why certain food combinations lead to greater satiety resulting in less caloric ingestion than others. Identifying and exploiting the macronutrient proportions that are associated with satiety and favorable postprandial endocrine responses may be a useful strategy for initiating weight loss through appetite regulation in the absence of purposeful calorie restriction.
In conclusion, evidence tends to suggest that for the regulation of ad libitum caloric ingestion, a high-protein diet may be beneficial whereas high-fat diets should most likely be avoided. It would appear to be most beneficial if the additional protein is ingested from solid food sources as food form also appears to play a role in feelings of satiety . Future research should investigate the effects of large doses of insoluble fiber in addition to a high-protein diet to determine if this combination could further attenuate appetite and energy intake.
Hormones That Affect Weight Gain
The main hormones that control weight gain and weight loss are:
- Thyroid hormones
Were going to look at each of these hormones more closely in just a moment.
But before we dive in, its important to remember that these hormones are not BAD.
They are our allies and they play very important roles in the body.;
However, when theyre out of balance, theres a ripple effect that can cause rapid weight issues.
So, with that out of the way, lets look at how each of these hormones impact our weight.
Reduce Exposure To Hormone Disruptors
Toxins are one of the most common reasons why hormonal weight gain occurs.
You see, toxins cause inflammation, which basically throws your body into a state of confusion.
The most common source of toxins is the food we eat.
Food toxins that contribute to hormonal weight include:
- Processed and genetically modified fats
- Processed sugar
- Processed meats
So, if you want to lose weight fast and reverse hormone-related weight gain, reduce your consumption of these foods and ingredients.
This single step will make a tremendous difference in your bodys ability to shed excess pounds.
Your Low Testosterone Levels Are Slowing Down Your Metabolism
You are confronted with an astounding number of toxins each day, including pesticides, herbicides, genetically modified foods, and about six different synthetic hormones in meat. Toxins are lurking in face creams, prescription drugs, processed foods, your lipstick, the linings of tuna fish cans, the fire-retardant materials in couches, and even the air you breathe. The list goes on.
Many types of these toxins, such as pesticides, plastics, and industrial chemicals, behave like estrogen when absorbed in the body. Experts believe that our increasing exposure to toxins helps explain why so many girls are entering puberty earlier and why many boys exhibit feminine characteristics such as developing breasts. Xeno-estrogens, as these particular toxins are called, have been associated with an elevated risk of estrogen-driven diseases like breast and ovarian cancers and endometriosis.
All this fake estrogen overwhelms your body’s testosteronewhich is vital for hormone balanceand contributes to estrogen overload. Testosterone contributes to muscle growth, which in turn supports metabolism. And, as we already know, estrogen overload raises insulin insensitivity. The combination adds pounds to your frame: A study from Sweden published in the journal Chemosphere showed that exposure to a particular type of pesticide called organochloride was linked to a weight gain of 9½ pounds over 50 years.
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What You Can Eat
Foods you can eat include lean protein ; vegetables and most fruit; chia seeds, flaxseeds, and most nuts; olive oil and some other unsaturated oils and fats, like canola oil; and whole grains like buckwheat, brown rice, and quinoa.
You’ll eat often — every 3-4 hours — making healthy food choices at least 80% of the time. But you do get one to two cheat meals a week.
Why Take Hormone Replacement Therapy
Most women in perimenopause and menopause are struggling with their weight on some level. Too much weight, weight in the wrong places, and cant seem to exercise enough to keep it off. Even worse, the diets and exercises that once worked so well, or the new ones that claim to be the panacea, are often harsh and can escalate hormonal imbalances.14
As we discussed, hormones control metabolism and weight balance. The most effective way to get hormones back on track, halt the ever-present scale creep, and return to a healthy weight is to correct hormonal imbalances with HRT. Once hormones are back in balance, weight loss can begin.;;
Hormone regulation is complicated. The bodys hormones are all interconnected. The hormone systems must work in harmony and continually rebalance in response to physical and emotional events in a womans life. Perimenopause and menopause are the phases of a womans life when she will experience huge swings in hormone levels. Specifically, hormones related to:
- Reproduction, and the monthly menstrual cycle ,
- Adrenal gland functioning ,
- Thyroid gland activity .
If perimenopausal and menopausal women fail to address the hormonal root causes of weight gain and weight loss resistance, their goals will not be achieved. At perimenopause, women will experience a cascade of hormone imbalances. Since these three hormonal networks impact one another, the results can sometimes be extreme.
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