Obstacles to Fat Loss
It’s the little things that count…
Losing fat is not just about being able to fit into smaller clothes, it’s about giving your whole body a tune-up. Focus on health, and fat loss will follow. Remember it is the small changes that can make the biggest difference!
Shedding those excess kilos will add years onto your life. Research has shown that if overweight Australians lost as little as 5 kgs, this could result in a 34% reduction in deaths associated with heart disease. Put another way, this means that if overweight Aussies lost 5 kgs each, there would be 81,400 less deaths in Australia from heart disease over the next 20 years!
If you have obstacles standing in the way of successful health and fat loss, then discuss this with your Glow Practitioner. They can work with you and help you deal with any difficulties that you may have. They will show you which foods and supplements will give you the energy you need to thrive and lose fat at the same time.
Did you know your hormones can interfere with your weight loss?
In order to lose weight most people generally think a change in diet and exercise is all that is required. Obviously diet and exercise are very important, but other factors can slow down weight loss, even if you are doing all the ‘right’ things in terms of diet and exercise. For example, hormonal imbalances can affect your ability to lose weight. If you are suffering from persistent fatigue even when you are getting plenty of sleep, are having unexplainable mood swings, are menopausal, or stressed, you may be suffering from hormonal imbalances.
There are many different hormones that can affect weight loss, including:
• Cortisol: When you are under stress, cortisol (stress hormone) levels increase. This in turn increases your appetite and more fat is stored around the waist, and this decreases metabolic weight so you don’t burn calories as effectively.
• Insulin and Serotonin: Serotonin is a neurotransmitter released in the brain that makes you feel good, feel satisfied and prevents cravings. When you are stressed, depressed or have anxiety, serotonin decreases and can trigger cravings for high carbohydrate foods that give
serotonin a quick boost. Long-term this raises insulin, which is the hormone that makes you store more fat and leads to a cycle of cravings and over-eating.
• Oestrogen: In women, oestrogen is another hormone that can fuel weight gain, particularly around the hips. If you suffer from premenstrual symptoms or menopausal problems, your oestrogen levels may be out of balance, which could be affecting your weight loss.
• Testosterone: In men, low testosterone increases body fat that tends to accumulate around the stomach.
Did you know that too many toxins can interfere with your weight loss?
If you are exposed to toxins from such things as heavy metals, chemicals, drugs or pollutants in the air, water and/or food, one of your body’s defence mechanisms against these toxins is to store them in fat tissue, bones and other tissue. When you have excess body fat, this may lead to a higher accumulation of these toxins. Too many accumulated toxins can affect energy levels, general health and even your ability to burn fat.
Eliminating any stored toxins is, therefore, an important part of any wholistic weight loss plan.
Did you know that stress can affect your weight loss?
For many of us, daily life is often a juggle, as we try to keep many balls up in the air at once. All this ‘juggling’ can contribute to feelings of stress, tension and anxiety. Unfortunately, too much stress can actually reduce your ability to burn fat and lose weight. Stress affects your body by increasing cortisol levels; cortisol is often referred to as the body’s ‘stress hormone’. Increased cortisol levels can adversely affect blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and can stop you burning fat. This is because cortisol stimulates the release of insulin, the hormone which plays an important role in maintaining blood sugar levels. This increased release of insulin often tends to encourage people to overeat and crave foods high in carbohydrates and fats. When you increase your consumption of these foods it directly causes weight gain, especially in the abdominal area.
Did you know poor thyroid function can affect your weight loss?
Your thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland, situated in the front part of your neck, which produces hormones needed for normal metabolism. Thyroid hormones set the pace for most of your body functions; they regulate your metabolic rate and how fast or slow your organs and tissues function. Thyroid dysfunction can affect weight, energy levels, appetite and mood. When your thyroid is under-functioning, your body’s metabolism slows down and weight loss becomes very difficult. If your thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone (thyroxine), you may experience symptoms such as tiredness, fatigue and weight gain. If you are suffering from these symptoms, perhaps your thyroid isn’t functioning optimally.
Did you know that pain and inflammation can stop fat burning?
Inflammation can produce localised pain with redness, heat and swelling (e.g. as seen in arthritis), but can also be ‘silent’ and less obvious. If you are trying to lose weight and have some inflammation in your body, this could actually be slowing down your fat burning!
In fact, inflammation predisposes the body to store fat, and when your body is inflamed, chemicals are released that stimulate the secretion of a hormone called leptin from fat cells. Leptin, in normal amounts, is responsible for helping regulate appetite and energy production. However, high levels of this hormone are a problem because they further increase inflammation; interfering with the entry of glucose into the cells and with the body’s insulin response. This may, in turn, lead to insulin resistance and more fat storage (discussed in the third edition of the Shake It newsletter). When you have an increase in fat storage, this will then heighten the inflammatory response and so the vicious cycle continues.