The Important Truth About Drug Free Weight Loss
By Marcus Laux, ND.
Most gimmick, fad, and quick-weight-loss diets are poorly designed. They aren't sustainable, nutritionally sound, or scientifically viable.
Permanent healthy weight loss involves establishing a more satisfying way of living and thinkingthe kind of living that embraces the natural needs of your body without depriving you or separating you from nature. There are four simple steps:
Step 1: Think Yourself Thin
- A healthy attitude and mindset are the first step in choosing to lose weight. Begin by discovering your reasons for eating. Weight gain has less to do with what you eat, and more to do with why you eat.
- Practice personal insight and honesty. Begin your day with 1015 minutes of simple meditation or prayer in a quiet place. Focus on your inner feelings and desires. Let the things that are bothering you come to the surface and let them go. Find out if you're an Emotional Eater. Meditate or pray before your mealit should rejuvenate you.
- Meditation allows you to connect calmly with your deepest thoughts and feelings. Then you should be able to eat with more conscious attention and appreciation and reduce your chances of overeating. Write down ideas, feelings, or revelations for further reflection.
Step 2: Eat Natural Fat-Burning Foods
- Learn to make proper food choices. You were not meant to be overweight. Even if you have a genetic tendency toward weight gain, you can and will be naturally trim if you give nature the opportunity to burn off the fat.
- Certain foods increase metabolism while others bog it down. Forget trend diets that focus what you need to cut outjunk foods, refined foods, and fried foodsand focus on what you need to add to your diet.
- Try a drink before you snack or sit down for a meal.
Sometimes what feels like hunger pains are actually thirst pains. Water is your best bet, then fresh juices (the real stuff), iced tea, or herbal teas.
- Enjoy red meat in moderation. It's high in L-carnitinean amino acid that mimics the fat-burning effects of exercise.
- Eat fresh, whole, organic, nutrient-richpreferably local and seasonalfoods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, grains, nuts, seeds, and fish. Sparingly eat carrots, potatoes, corn, and peas, because they have a high glycemic index rating.
- Eat as much as you want of cabbage, celery, mushrooms, zucchini, green onion, hot peppers, banana peppers, endive, radish, jicama, and all dark, leafy greens. Keep a bowl of your favorite washed, raw veggies in the refrigerator all the time. If you want to use a dipping sauce make it from yogurt or low-fat cream cheese, dill, and fresh squeezed lemon juice.
- Snack on vegetables and legumes that provide fiber, complex carbohydrates, and minerals needed for sustained energy and regularityso you feel full longer. Fruits are good for you, but fruit sugar burns quickly and your 10 a.m. apple won't last you until lunchtime.
- Aim for 100150 calorie snacks that consist of some protein, some fat, and some carbsso enjoy a couple of cubes of good cheese with your veggie snacks, or a handful of almonds, macadamia nuts, or crackers with peanut or almond butter.
- Munch on the right kind of nuts to boost essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. A recent study found that individuals who ate 73 grams, or two small handfuls of almonds daily, did not show any signs of weight gain. Nuts are filling and satisfying.
- Replace bad fats with good fats. Decrease polyunsaturated fats and trans fatty acids like margarine, shortening, and partially hydrogenated oils. Use olive oil, coconut oil, or nut oils like macadamia or walnut.
- Use spices such as ginger, marjoram, rosemary, fennel, cardamom, dill, thyme, tarragon, coriander, and basil, because they're tongue-pleasers that will give your meal a flavor boost without adding calories or fat.
- Take a high-quality multivitamin and mineral that includes a complete B-complex. This will enhance your body's ability to digest, absorb, and eliminate foods.
Step 3: Nature's Appetite Suppressants and Fat Burners
Select natural and safe appetite suppressants and fat burners:
- Consider taking 5-HTP to boost serotonin levels. Serotonin deficiency is associated with feelings of starvation and hunger. Taking 5-HTP at low doses effectively suppresses cravings for refined carbohydrates. Always take it with protein (1225 mg 30 minutes before each meal, and no more than 75 mg per day).
- Use conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) to burn fat and turn it into energy. Without CLA, your body will store fat. CLA can be found in whole milk, butter, whole cheeses, beef, and lamb.
- Supplemental CLA increases metabolic rate, decreases appetite, and enhances fat oxidation. It has been shown to reduce body fat by as much as 20 percent in 12 weeks without any changes in diet or lifestyle. Because CLA results in more muscle tissue, which weighs more than fatwatch your body fat percentage instead of your scale.
- L-phenylalanine also enhances the production of norepinephrine. When combined with green tea, L-phenylalanine is a powerful weight loss supplement that increases resting metabolic rate.
- Drink 23 cups of green tea. It contains polyphenol catechins that inhibit the breakdown of norepinephrine, and results in an increased metabolic rate and better fat oxidation so that existing fat cells are destroyed faster.
- Cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and other spices can curb your appetite by supporting healthy blood sugar levels. They help improve circulation and increase metabolic output. I recommend drinking teas made with them throughout the day. You can find them at most health food stores.
Step 4: Go Play
Take a break and get a little exercise.
At minimum, exercise for 30 minutes every other morning. Then take a "recess break" each afternoon (a light stroll, a good stretch, etc.). I suggest:
- Aerobic exercise that gets your heart rate up for 15 to 40 minutes to boost your calorie-burning. It doesn't have to be overly strenuous.
- Weight training to build muscle and improve your resting metabolism so you'll burn more calories all day long. Ounce for ounce, muscle requires more energy so it burns more calories than fat.
The Last Word
Hide your scale. Its information is not what's important. Instead focus on how you look, feel, and do what you want to do.
Be patient. Lasting weight loss takes some time. Make the time to incorporate these recommendations into your life, and you'll get satisfying and permanent results.
Are You An Emotional Eater?
Weight gain is often the result of emotional eating disorders. Answer the questions below to see if this applies to you.
- Are you eating because you are lonely, frustrated or afraid?("I hate my job…I wish I had a partner…if only I could change my life...")
- Do you eat to assert control over your life?("Everyone comes before me… I can't change things...")
- Is eating rich foods satisfying some other part of your life that is unsatisfying to you?("My partner doesn't love me enough… I'm not smart enough…")
- Is eating a substitute for something else in your life? Is it a self-made obstacle to keep you from expressing all that you are?("If I could lose weight, I'd be more successful at my job…my family…my social life...")
- Do you eat to cover up other unpleasantries that cause you distress?("I'm a failure at my career…I'm not attractive to other people…I'm not happy in my marriage...")
- Does eating allow you to avoid other responsibilities or activities?i.e., exercise…chasing your dreams.
- Is eating just a bad habit that needs to be broken?
If you answered yes to even one of these questions, you could have some level of an emotional eating disorder. You're probably eating for non-nourishing reasons; and no matter how good the food is, it can never fix or fulfill the mental and emotional challenges in your life.
Author Marcus Laux is a state licensed physician.
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