“I’ve tried everything to lose weight, but nothing works. What can I do?”
Dr Allegra says….
If you are struggling to lose weight and have “tried everything,” it’s likely that you’re not trying the right approach for you. That can be frustrating and confusing because there are so many people out there in that billion-dollar diet industry screaming about their approach is gonna work for you.
It gets really disheartening.
Often people give up, and depression can take hold.
It becomes a war with yourself, a war with food, and it’s not an enjoyable process. This is why we need to look at what is going on underneath the weight issue. We need to look at the other factors that play a role in cultivating balanced your weight effortlessly.
The weight loss industry is a billion-dollar industry and the goal is not to help you keep the weight off. The conventional approach to weight loss tends to fail most people so when we look at reasons why you might be struggling with weight loss, we need to look at the bigger picture.
To start, there are a couple of myths that I need to debunk for you.
A calorie is a calorie, is a calorie.
The implication is that all calories are created equal in the energy they provide. This is not at all true. Calories from simple carbohydrates, simple sugars, are quick burning energy. Calories from fat are long burning sustainable energy. Both are very different in how they work and act in the body.
I have a standing challenge for anyone who firmly believes that a calorie is a calorie is a calorie. If this is you, I want to spend the day with you. During that day you will consume 2,000 calories of high fructose corn syrup and I will consume 2,000 calories of grass-fed lamb. We will see how the day goes for both of us, and monitor blood sugar and stress levels. Can you believe that NO ONE in my 10 years of teaching has taken me up on this challenge? This challenge brings it into stark realization that you can’t eat whatever you want and just count your calories, if you want to be healthy.
Reduced calories will help you lose weight.
This is actually true and false. When reducing calories, yes, initially you will lose weight, but then your metabolism adjusts. Your metabolic system says, “OK, you’re giving me less energy now. I just need to slow down the rate at which I run your metabolism so I can do my job but with the reduced amount of resources you’re giving me.”
Over time your metabolism will slow down; which means it is harder to keep excess weight off. This is why caloric restriction diets do not work long-term. This is the most popular diet dogma shared about how to lose weight, because initially you’ll get results, but over time you will struggle harder and longer to keep your weight balanced.
We want to fuel your metabolism so it actually has the building blocks required to run its job properly and run at an optimal rate.
There is a one-size-fits-all diet.
In reality, we all have different dietary needs, different digestive needs, and different enzyme capabilities. This means we have different abilities to break down foods. You might find there is a food, or group of foods, that looks great on paper but you just can’t break it down. This is an intolerance. When you’re intolerant to a food, it doesn’t matter how cool this diet sounds, if it includes foods you can’t break down, it would be unhealthy for you as an individual.
Here’s the process, when you eat a food you can’t break down, it sits in your gut longer, where it ferments and putrefies. This inflammation limits your ability to absorb nutrients. When you have fewer nutrients, you get fewer building blocks to help you run your metabolism and immune system properly, things slow down. Because 70-90% percent of our immune system is in your gut, when you’re eating a food you can’t break down, it will push inflammation.
This digestive inflammation causes your digestive lining to become more permeable. If you’re constantly eating foods you’re intolerant to, your whole body will be more irritated and inflamed. Figuring out your ideal diet is essential to help you reset your metabolism and immune system so they can work properly.
Assessing food intolerances is something I do with every patient. This assessment is key to supporting deeper levels of healing. Once you remove these obstacles, it is much easier to naturally balance your weight so you no longer have to fight yourself to make optimal food choices.
Whether you’re eating the wrong diet for you, your hormones are out of balance, or you just don’t understand your physiologic needs; these all lead to a struggling to lose weight.
We also have to look at stress. Stress management is key to long-term weight loss. When you are stressed for long periods of time, cortisol (a stress hormone) levels go up, when cortisol levels go up, it is very difficult to lose weight. Your body is basically storing energy to manage the stressful time. Your body is going to hang on to every resource it possibly can in order to get you through this stress.
Lastly, we must address hormones. If your hormones are out of balance, it will be a struggle to maintain a healthy weight. We need to make sure your hormones are not an obstacle for a healthy weight.
Hormones show up in many different ways. When hormones are out of balance your ability to maintain a healthy weight will become a struggle. For example, if your thyroid is out of balance, especially if it is low functioning, it is going to make it easier to pack on pounds.
Then we look at your sex hormones, when estrogen and progesterone are out of balance your body is going to hang on to more weight.
Remember, one breath, one bite, one step at a time is all you need to create true and lasting changes in your health.
If you need help balancing your weight, give me a call. I am here to support you on your path to better health!
If you have a question for Dr. Allegra you would like considered, please submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “The Doctor Is In Question”.