A Permanent Solution to Control Body Weight

24 01 2015

Many dieters attempt to expedite weight loss results through fad diets promising to melt off the pounds in a short period of time.  None of them can keep the weight off long term because of their limited and restrictive nutrient imbalances, or deficits.  IMG_20130405_175303

In all the years of working in the field of health and fitness, with a clear understanding of the human metabolism, I’ve never seen a “quick” manmade weight loss program that worked long-term.  Instead, I’ve only seen them cause agony and heart ache in the long run for those desperate to control weight.

Do I believe there’s weight loss programs that work long term? Yes I do, but they’re not from products in a bottle, or pre-packed ready-to-eat meals.IMG_20130405_174905

The only sure fire and permanent healthy weight loss solution involves changing bad eating, food choice and sedentary habits.  Healthy behavioral habits which include balanced whole foods when combined with daily exercise activity support natural weight loss while achieving desired body weight and maintaining it long term.

The only exception to this rule is genetics and disease.  If body weight, or acute and chronic health conditions is causing problems seek medical treatment immediately. IMG_20130405_174646

In other words, it takes time to lose body fat naturally and keep it off permanently.  The metabolism does not respond well to frequent and rapid changes.  As a matter of fact when rapid weight loss occurs frequently, this yo-yo effect can break the metabolic fat burning function and reset it to gain weight permanently and cause disease.

Avoid the “I want it now” consumer mindset because that behavior will ultimately set you up for weight loss failure.  You’ve heard of patience is a virtue right?  In this case, the body’s metabolic function is depending on your ability to manage caloric energy exchange with some precision.  If you eat balanced whole food meals [3 squares a day], cut out the processed baked and fried garbage, drink plenty of water, then your well on your way to healthy weight loss without experiencing constant hunger and out of control weight gain.

Read more on how to naturally and permanently lose weight.

New Year Resolution Guarantees Weight Loss Success

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Monitor Fitness Progress without Cost of Trainer

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ANG MSC, CPT, RET.  2015 MirrorAthlete® Copyright, All rights reserved.  MirrorAthlete.com Sign up for your free eNewsletter.





Lack of Sleep and Weight Gain Connection

21 04 2014

 

Seek adventures in life.  This will motivate you to stay active.

Seek adventures in life. This will motivate you to stay active.

How many of you have a tendency to stay up late and then eat too much before bed time?  Or do you lack a good night’s sleep because of daily stress, anxiety or snoring while you sleep?  Do you wake up with little energy and then eat too much throughout the day?  Believe it or not there is a connection between these causes of your sleepless nights and weight gain.

Most are unaware when we lack a good night’s sleep we are then sleep deprived and our body is chemically stimulated internally and then activated to gain weight.  Much of this cause and effect has to do with one or more behavioral habits, environmental stressors and/or medical disorder that cause us to lose sleep.  And when we lose sleep our internal body’s hormonal and metabolic conditions shift to crave more food.

Let’s first address staying up late at night and eating too much before bed.  At night when you don’t sleep “for whatever reason” your body continues to burn energy and you feel hungry.  Instead of sleeping, you’re prone to eat more.  And this is the worse time to eat when the body’s metabolism is at its lowest metabolic burn rate.  Staying up late and watching Television and eating fattening food snacks are behavioral habits that don’t help in maintaining healthy body weight.

However, if the reason you do this is because of a bad habit of watching late night TV, the good news is this habit can be changed.  The not so good news is… if this habit is caused from chronic stress, anxiety and/or depression; behavioral therapy and/or medical treatment may be needed to address a primary medical condition prior to changing a secondary bad food habit used as a comfort crutch.

When you stay up late or don’t get enough sleep and if this trend continues, you’re going to feel low motivation to work, exercise, or even work on relationships, etc.  But a worse effect often results from sleep deprivation, i.e., food cravings that cause us to eat more than we would otherwise.  This is likely the result of hormonal and metabolic imbalances caused from sleep deprivation that attempt to resolve the body of feeling bad, or experiencing low energy levels.  And this feeling is typically coupled to a varying degree; a depressed mind-body [known as psychosomatic relationship].  Sleep deprived individuals are often unaware of these internal mechanisms and how they internally activate to provide the body a feeling of normalcy.

“The lack of sleep also changes the balance of hormones in your body, especially ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin spurs you to eat, and leptin tells you when to stop. When you are sleep-deprived, your body creates more ghrelin and less leptin; this leads to more eating, additional calories, and extra weight gain (Brooks 2014).”  “In fact, have you ever experienced a sleepless night followed by a day when no matter what you ate you never felt full or satisfied?  If so, then you have experienced the workings of leptin and ghrelin (Bouchez 2014).”

Also when tired you’re more prone to feel stressors and anxiety associated with the daily grind.  Why?  Because you lack the energy to mentally and physically shield yourself of their effects within your internal environment.  And when the body feels overwhelmed and depressed, then the mind and spirit is also less able to cope these stressors.

Sleeping disorders and behavioral habits can cause acute and chronic depression.  “People with insomnia often wake repeatedly during the night and don’t feel rested in the morning.  Insomnia can cause or worsen fatigue, already a symptom of depression.  ‘Sleep is clearly linked with mental health and insomnia is considered a hallmark of depression (Tracey 2014).”

Your weight gain nemesis may be directly related to any number of internal or external environmental conditions, or stressors that prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.  Then you may feel depressed and eat for comfort; or your body tells you it’s time to eat even when not hungry. Or by simply not getting enough sleep the fat cell is unable to release its stored energy.

    “For years researchers have known that adults who sleep less than five or six hours a night are at higher risk of being overweight. Among children, sleeping less than 10 hours a night is associated with weight gain.  ‘Now a fascinating new study suggests that the link may be even more insidious than previously thought.  Losing just a few hours of sleep a few nights in a row can lead to almost immediate weight gain (Parker-Pope 2013).” 

    “Perhaps the largest study to track the effects of sleep habits on weight gain over a period of time was presented by the American Thoracic Society International Conference in 2006. The study that included nearly 70,000 middle aged women specifically pointed out those women who sleep 5 hours or less per night generally weigh more than women who sleep 7 hours per night (Menopot 2014).”

It’s interesting to note within the fat cell itself, there is a physiological responses to metabolic hormonal imbalances caused by a poor night’s sleep.  In other words studies show us the longer one goes without sleep causes fat cells to malfunction by preventing its release of stored energy.  And for those that experience too many sleepless nights the risk of diabetes, circulatory and cardio health risk increases with weight gain.

“To investigate, Matthew Brady at the University of Chicago and his colleagues tested fat cells taken from the bellies of seven adults after four nights of sleeping up to 8 and a half hours, and then again after four nights on a measly 4 and a half hours.  The team found that after sleep deprivation fat cells from the same person were on average 30 per cent less responsive to insulin – a hormone that makes muscle, liver and fat cells take up glucose after a meal.”

“High blood glucose levels are linked to diabetes. Fat cells also normally release the appetite-regulating hormone leptin [tells you when to stop eating]. Brady suggests that if sleep-deprived cells are generally malfunctioning, this mechanism may also be disrupted, affecting weight gain (Hamzelou 2012).”

There are many reasons one may not get a good night’s sleep.  We’ve briefly touched on insomnia, behavioral habits and suggested environment stressors that keep us from getting a good night’s sleep.  But there are also medical conditions like sleep apnea, chronic depression and other medical disorders patients need help with in order to get a good night’s sleep, maintain healthy body weight and overall good health.

“It appears individuals can learn to change habits and behaviors through a natural process of removing an identified anxiety-stress stimulus.  Once the anxiety or stress trigger mechanism has been removed; anxiety and depression symptoms may be alleviated for many and go away never to return (Woodard 2010).”

Outside of environmental stressors and bad habits, there is a serious medical condition known as sleep apnea that causes many to lose sleep because of excessive snoring.  But it must be pointed out those who snore don’t necessarily have sleep apnea.  Which will become apparent after review of the summarized sleep study below.

Sleep apnea occurs during sleep and when muscle tissue is relaxed at the back of the throat in a way that partially occludes a clear airway.  In some cases, as more weighted tissue is involved around the throat area the structural airway integrity buckles and partially blocks it of free air passage.  This buckling can be thought of as a breach of the airway and in a way that causes excessive snoring.

There is also a neurological condition that is not a mechanical breach or related to an overweight condition.  Instead sleep apnea can occur due to the CNS (Central Nervous System) signaling the brain to stop breathing intermittently during sleep.  This type of breathing interruption is less understood but can be treated in the same way as a mechanical blockage using CPAP (Positive Airway Pressure) or dental device that keeps airway open.  Also both medical conditions of sleep apnea “mechanical and neurological” can also occur simultaneously.  In any event, dependent on medical diagnosis can be medically treated and/or surgically corrected to varying degrees of a successful outcome.

Those with sleep apnea repeatedly wake up because of snoring and occluded airway and May, or may not be consciously aware of doing so. But in almost all cases, those with untreated sleep apnea rarely feel they’ve had a good night’s sleep, feel unrested when they awake and are typically tired throughout the day.

Sleep apnea is serious business because respiratory failure and other health risk have led to death.  If you or spouse have a serious snoring problem, or stop breathing intermittently during sleep, or can’t sleep for whatever reason… see your physician and request a sleep study test.

Sleep Study Tests Show the Following Results:  While asleep, those with sleep apnea unknowingly experience episodes where they stop breathing.  This can occur 5-50 times per hour and up to 300 times during regular sleep.  But if the “non-breathing” episodes only last seconds or less, this does not appear to have a significant health risk to the body.  But if one is sleeping and averages 30 “non-breathing” episodes per hourly average where breathing stops up to 10 second intervals minimum between breaths, this is where serious health risk increases and incremental/accumulative damage to the heart occurs.  While loved one(s) and friends assume you simply have a bad, loud obnoxious snore, this could in fact be an indicator of something far worse than irritating those around you.  And also be aware, just because you snore does not mean you have sleep apnea.  Only a sleep study test can prove this for sure (Woodard 2010).

When we snore and wake up repeatedly, or get little sleep for whatever reason we lack in REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep.  While under REM our skeletal muscles are deeply relaxed and we dream and our food intake throughout the day is better regulated because our hormones and metabolism is refreshed, energized and balanced optimally.

It is especially important if you suffer from stress, anxiety, obesity, respiratory, or other disorder that causes you to lose sleep, seek medical treatment.  Treatment may include anti-anxiety, depression and/or behavioral therapy with, or without hormonal or prescription drug treatment.  If overweight you may also be tested for diabetes, heart and circulatory health, etc. Tests and treatment recommendations may also include sleep study test, CPAP (Positive Airway Pressure) or other device treatment, surgery to alleviate sleep disorder condition, etc.

Regardless of what prevents you from getting a good night’s sleep it is possible to target the problem of your sleep deprivation for sake of your health and overall wellbeing.

Developing or resolving good sleep habits and patterns will support healthy body weight, reduce daily stress and anxiety levels; and will provide the feel good energy to live the lifestyle you need, want and deserve.

Works Cited and Article Resources,

Bouchez, Colette. “The Dream Diet: Losing Weight While You Sleep.” Review. Web log post. WebMD. WebMD, LLC., 2014. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Brooks, Dominique W., MD, MBA. “Sleep Deprivation and Weight Gain.” LoveToKnow. LoveToKnow Corp., 2014. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Hamzelou, Jessica. “‘Tired’ Fat Cells Might Trigger Obesity.” NewScientist. Reed Business Information Ltd., 15 Oct. 2012. Web. 20 Apr. 2014.

Menopot. “Insomnia and Weight Gain.” Insomnia and Weight Gain. Menopot, n.d. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Parker-Pope, Tara. “Lost Sleep Can Lead to Weight Gain.” The New York Times. The New York Times Company, 18 Mar. 2013. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Tracy, Natasha. “Depression and Sleep Disorders.” HealthyPlace. HealthyPlace, 8 Sept. 2010. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Woodard, Marc T. “Defeat Anxiety and Panic Attacks.” Web log post. MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets. MirrorAthlete Inc., 24 Nov. 2010. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Woodard, Marc T. “Sleep Apnea an Insidious Angel of Death.” Web log post. MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets. MirrorAthlete Inc., 23 July 2010. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, MSC Officer, ANG Ret. 2014 Copyright.  All rights reserved, MirrorAthlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.





Alleviate Pain Through Nutritional & Herbal Remedies

21 08 2009

For those of you seeking to alleviate pain through nutritional and herbal remedies there seem to be a significant benefit for those with pains and aches caused through degenerative and progressive pathogen illness and disease.  Certainly, it is well founded through scientific studies that healthy and nutrient strong foods (visit our health repository and read MAE articles on super foods) intake contributes greatly as a preventative measure against illness and disease that lead to and cause pain.  If illness and disease can be defeated before it ever gets the opportunity to become a pain disorder within the body then one has a good chance minimizing and managing normal aches and pain while aging.  Healthy cell development and maintenance of the body at the molecular level requires proper nutrients and is of great importance in keeping the body pain free and/or alleviating pain once a pain disorder is present.

In order to determine a nutritional or herbal remedy course of action that would work for you, you first must understand the concept of a customized pain management program.  My premise is “what remedies work for others may only work in part, whole or not at all for what is causing your particular pain disorder.”  That’s right, what nutrients and herbal remedies work for me in my pain management program may not work for you at all, or have insignificant pain alleviation benefits.  Within my chronicles “Mirror Athlete with Chronic Pain” located within the Chronicles Repository, I discuss customized pain management programs in detail and how you can begin to apply this knowledge to your particular “unique” pain program regardless of pain disorder.  You must learn to educate yourself in such matters in order to find natural cures, super food quality supplements and whole foods that will work for you providing a better quality of healthy life experience.  I’ve also written articles, “Man Made Foods Bad, Natural Foods Good,” which you can also find in the health repository.

Good nutrition is one of the “key” preventative means to a healthy mind and body in order to have a fighting chance at combating unhealthy cell mutations that cause pain.  In my opinion, stressed cells that cause “pain symptoms” should not be confused with long-term illness leading to “pain disease and disorders.”  This is because sick, or stressed cells that cause acute pain, may, or may not propagate other cells to become permanently damaged leading to chronic “long-term“pain disease.  The point is, don’t let the acute pain get out of hand to become a chronic pain disorder that will not go away.  One of the best ways to combat cell illness causing pain is to feed it God’s natural foods provided on this earth.  Note – When I refer to foods I’m also referring to herbs.

The premise that good nutrition and herbal remedies will stave off increased pain disease in all cases, or cure pain illness, regardless of medical situation is not all inclusive, but certainly can’t hurt for a hopeful health or pain alleviation outcome for a terminally ill patient.  For example, there are terminal pathological diseases, regardless of treatment will not abate the damage done to the internal immune, muscle, skeletal, nerve or organ systems, etc., within the body.  Even if a patient has terminal disease with significant pain a holistic customized pain management treatment approach appears to provide a better quality of life outcome than not implementing such a treatment.  When I refer to customized pain management treatment, I’m referring to treating the mind, body and soul of an individual.  The predominant healthy activity components of a pain management program include, but not limited to:  Nutritional-herbal, exercise, spiritual, physical therapeutic, alternative medicine, social and healthy activities.

You can live a better quality of life as opposed to a never ending treatment program that fills your life with inactivity, or doctor’s visits that only seem to appease the aggravating pain for moments in time.  You can also accept the never ending supply of pharmaceutical prescriptions to dull the aches and pains while battling frequent depression, weight gain and other illness symptoms as a result of medicated body rejection.  Or you can become proactive in your pain management program and expand your pain alleviation efforts by adding good nutrition and herbal remedies to the mix.  Also stop bad consumption habits, e.g., smoking, drinking, consuming enriched package-can foods, drinking diet sodas, to include high fat and other sugar enriched foods (read Aspartame the Silent Killer, MAE Health Repository).

Through much research, pain modality and alleviation experiences; I have treated almost every major muscular-skeletal articulation in my body.  I’ve learned to customize a pain program for myself where I believe anyone that applied my pain management principles would experience a better quality of living while significantly alleviating, or eliminating pain.  Although I’ve been successful at customizing my own pain management program, I cannot guarantee what works for me will work for you one hundred percent.  However, I can guarantee if you apply my principles you will be able to enjoy a better quality of life.  This is because I teach you how to use my 25 years of pain management experience and education to apply to your specific pain program using sound & tried principles!  Some of my techniques use healthy daily nutrition, supplements which include herbal remedies.  Of course, you should know by now proper nutrition is a key ingredient to alleviating pain.  As mentioned, the holistic pain management approach must address the whole being; mind, body and soul.  Proper nutrition and herbal remedies (natural cures and super foods) is a big component of the healing and healthy being maintenance program.

The cold hard truth, “You must learn how to become your own pain management advocate!”  But you don’t have to go it alone.  I can teach you how to do this.  The point here, if a doctor prescribes a specific treatment and you don’t receive a significant pain relief benefit and/or the treatment is impacting your mood… Search for alternative treatments to discuss common sense referrals if possible.  Find a course of pain alleviation that works well for you!  If the mind is depressed so will be the body.  Although your body may receive pain alleviation “at first” regardless of pain modality therapy, if you don’t consider incorporation of a sound nutrient program, your illness, or disease “most likely” will continue to degenerate and may accelerate the disease progression.  This is because the body and mind are complicatedly interlinked (psychosomatic).  Our Western medicine and insurance policies and procedures are so decentralized and complicated in terms of pain modality treatment and practice, it is no wonder chronic pain issues are so difficult for the patient to find resolve.   For example, does the patient advocate for the mind, body, or soul?  Or is the best course of pain alleviation treatment a combination of the entire being?  Do our Western medicine practices treat the whole being when dealing with pain management?  The answer is simple, No.

You must strive always to improve and make preventative and corrective pain management modifications especially as you age, or pain intolerances and depression occur.  A customized pain management program is “almost always” in a state of flux.  This means you must be proactive with the management of your pain program making modifications to daily activity based on pain tolerance and intolerance.  What I mean by this statement, you must develop a pain program that addresses all changing workloads, exercise, activity, nutritional & herbal requirements for your particular lifestyle while living with pain.  I address this work load pain prescription in detail, see (http://www.mirrorathlete.com/ChroniclesRepos.html ) within “Mirror Athlete chronicles and mentioned within many articles and home site (http://www.mirrorathlete.com/HealthRepository.html).

It’s what you don’t know that creates much more pain and depression than is necessary to experience.  I started out by saying that there are nutritional and herbal remedies that will be of benefit for your pain alleviation.  I’ve also made some presumptions for you.  Such as, with the correct natural super food and herbal remedies it is certainly possible to prevent illness and disease that would cause pain in a progressed state, slow down pain disease, or abate the pain pathology.  It is certainly possible to reverse or mitigate disease and illness through applicable super food and herbal consumption as case studies have been verified throughout the medical community.  Use any search engine on the Internet and type in Natural Cures, or Supplements and/or Herbal pain cures, etc.  I cannot possibly list all the combinations of potential cures for all ailments.  Only that you should highly consider implementing after researching a nutritional super food, or herbal remedy that may help your pain disorder situation if you have not done so.

There are a lot of personal testimonials, medical controlled studies that show positive results by those that have incorporated these super foods and herbs into their diet while consulting their medical providers.  Primary care physicians that don’t subscribe to natural cure herbs or foods may only provide you pharmaceutical prescriptions.  Pharmaceuticals are man-made and not necessarily in your bodies best interest in all cases.  If in doubt as what to do, pharmaceuticals, or natural cures decision…  Have discussions with your medical providers about taking both herbal and prescription medications simultaneously.   In many cases, supplementation of super food and herbs with pharmaceuticals does not create, or complicate pain, or health conditions.  Instead, pain patients state dramatic pain alleviation results where prescription use declined, or were no longer necessary.

It is scientifically proven your body requires specific nutrients to maintain optimum health.  Imagine if you could find a pain treatment that cures what ails you, to include remove your pain regardless of pathology!   Well folks, it is possible and it happens every day.  Some like to refer to terminal disease remission as a miracle, because in most cases, complete chronic pain abatement in my opinion “is a miracle regardless of disease.”  One must never rule out the soul’s spiritual positive power of healing.  To do so would be a grave mistake in the pain healing and terminal illness remission process.  Without necessary nutrients the body begins a degradation phase prematurely regardless of age!  Think of your body like a car engine.  Without a good air, or oil filters (body equivalent – kidneys, liver, lungs) one might experience tenderness, irritability, pain irregularity in the liver, kidneys, intestines, stomach, muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, skin discoloration, etc., due to poor eating habits where toxin builds up in the body.  Through time, without consideration to toxic food consumption the body becomes less efficient at removing the toxins.

The car experiences poor performance, iritic operations and poor start, or out of tune characteristic when oil, gas and air filters are not maintained making it more difficult to remove pollutants from the car engine.  The engine parts like the body begins to experience degradation when organs begin to fail due to toxic consumption habits and improper preventative health practices.  Like the body’s internal organs, the car’s engine components eventually break down due to poor fluid filtration characteristics, air and fuel quality circulation, etc., causing erratic operation.  This breakdown uncorrected within the body creates illness and disease, hence pain!  Your car may still run for many years.  But unlike the car you feel pain and discomfort.  The cost of car repairs at some point to keep the vehicle on the road soon outweighs the benefits of corrective maintenance costs and you eventually replace the car.  Since our body is not a car, we simply cannot replace or remove parts in most cases to alleviate the pain and make the body whole!

It is for this reason; you must look to incorporate proper nutrition and possibly herbal remedies into your diet!  At the molecular level regardless of pain disease, or illness one must understand the benefits of a holistic pain management approach while customizing a pain management program.  If your expectation is to reduce pain through a customized pain management program, you also need to consider the body’s molecular nutrient requirement!   Nutrition, herbal remedies and exercise should be incorporated if possible within a pain management program to have optimal chances at cell repair, or win a fight against any illness or disease!  You may also avoid going under the knife and possibly creating a worse pain, illness, or disease scenario while incorporating such practices within your pain management program.  Surgery should be your last recourse!

 

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2009 Copyright, All rights reserved.  Mirror Athlete Enterprises Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.