by drmiranda | Oct 7, 2014 | sleep, weight loss
Today’s post is indirectly related to weight loss, but when the scale just won’t budge – you have to think outside of the box!
As a chiropractor, I get a surprising amount of questions about sleep and mattresses in particular. Unfortunately, there is no perfect mattress – but here is some sage advice to help you with your beauty sleep.
First things first, do you need a new mattress?
If you are asking this question, the answer is a resounding YES! On a serious note, no matter what the warranty may be on your mattress – if it is over 7-8 years old, it is time to consider replacing it, and if it is 10 ears old, it really must be replaced. There are very, very few exceptions to this. Period. Over time, dust mites, dirt, dead skin, dried sweat, and other nasties that you don’t want to envision yourself sleeping on all build up within your mattress. In addition, springs wear out and foam and padding materials break down, all resulting in less than ideal sleeping situations. Older mattresses can collapse, creating a hammock effect which puts your spine in an unnatural position for 8+ hours each night. Other considerations that it may be time to replace your mattress:
1. You frequently wake up stiff and achy. You have moderate joint pain, or feel unrested upon waking.
2. You have chronic back pain that isn’t responding to treatment.
3. Your mattress has lumps, bumps, or divots.
4. You often find yourself sleeping in an alternative spot, ie. your favorite chair, the couch, the guest bed, etc. as opposed to wanting to go to bed.
5. Your mattress creaks, squeaks, crinkles, or otherwise makes noise. This is an audible sign of material breakdown.
I have found that people often scrimp when it comes to buying a mattress, but you can’t put a price on a good night’s sleep. Remember, you spend 8 hours a night on this contraption. An investment in your mattress is an investment in yourself. People spend tens of thousands of dollars on a car that they spend 30 minutes a day in, but they balk at spending $1000 on a mattress that they will spend 8 hours a night in for the next 8 years.
365 days in a year times 8 years is 2,920. Figure out how much a good night’s sleep is worth to you. Is it a dollar a night? 50 cents? Two dollars? etc. If two people are sharing the mattress, divide your figures in half to get real-world estimates. Mattresses vary tremendously from brand to brand, and even within brands. Quality is of key importance, because a mattress purchase is an investment in YOU and your health. A $400-$500 bargain mattress that leaves you in constant pain, or breaks down in 2 years is not the bargain you thought it was.
The importance of a good night’s sleep
Several studies have linked weight and sleep. One published last year by the Canadian Medical Association Journal, entitled Adequate Sleep to Improve the Treatment of Obesity1
found that participants that slept fewer than the 8.5 hours per evening lost 55% less fat than the participants sleeping 8.5 hours per night. Furthermore, in a 6 month controlled study, women that slept over 7 hours per night and had better subjective sleep quality, had a 33% better chance of successful weight loss. I have had patients with poor sleep patterns who have had complete weight loss plateaus, so it is one of the things I always ask about when someone is looking to lose weight.
Furthermore, there is a well known connection between sleep and mood. Not only does sleep affect mood, but mood affects sleep – which creates a vicious downward cycle of ever increasing stress, exhaustion, and depression. Studies have found that 15-20% of people diagnosed with insomnia will develop major depression. 2 In another study people with insomnia were 20 times more likely to develop panic disorder (a type of anxiety).3.
You do virtually all of your wound healing and repair while sleeping, and children grow when they are sleeping, so sleep is one of the most crucial biological functions. Your brain processes, decompresses, and organizes your thoughts and experiences during sleep, so we know it is necessary for all higher order mental functioning. Now add stress, anxiety and weight gain as possible side effects for not having enough high quality sleep and you should have more than enough motivation to replace that mattress you’ve been schlepping around for far too long.
Types of mattresses and their pro’s and con’s
Traditional Innerspring Mattresses – the majority of mattresses fall into this category. These consist of a series of metal coils tied together and layered between layers of cotton and padding. You will see references to “coil count”, with the higher coil counts being associated with firmer mattress levels, additional expense, and longer shelf-life. Comfort levels and lifespan very considerably based on the materials used in construction. Most Innerspring mattresses have some sort of pillow-top on them now, which prohibits you from flipping or rotating your mattress – thus shortening its lifespan. Additionally, pillow tops are frequently the first part of a mattress to break down, leaving obvious lumps, sags, hammocking, or central humping of the mattress.
Individual Pocket-Coil Mattresses – some manufactures individually enclose each coil in its own sewed pocket as opposed to tying them together to make a large supportive framework as seen above. Each coil is capable of independent movement, which means that one sleep partner’s movements will not translate to another when they roll over or shift positions. The same issues with pillow top breakdown are seen with these mattresses.
Memory Foam Mattresses – Made of heat or pressure sensitive foam, and designed to relieve pressure points where the body touches the mattress, foam mattresses can be a godsend for people with fibromyalgia or a strong history of joint pain. The down side, memory foam mattresses are often amongst the most expensive. They frequently run hot, so if you like to be cool while you sleep – you may find these too hot and sweaty. Memory foam also comes in several grades and densities, ranging from super-compliant to incredibly firm, so one person’s perfect fit, is another person’s misery. Foam itself is prone to both off-gassing (if you are sensitive to chemical odors) or physical break down, although these problems tend to be lesser with the better established foam manufacturers. Make sure to purchase at least 5lb memory foam so it doesn’t collapse and break down too quickly.
Latex Mattresses – barely squeak by with their own category. They are very similar to memory foam mattresses. Obviously not a good choice for those with a latex allergy, and amongst the most expensive of mattress types, latex mattresses in general have the longest lifespan of any mattress type. If a high density foam is purchased, you should not have major divots or humping issues, and the mattress can be flipped or rotated – further extending its lifespan. Most tend to be fairly firm.
Adjustable Air Mattresses – You know the ones, where you ‘select your number’. Early models had issues with mold growing in the baffles and spontaneous deflation in the middle of the night. A quick google search will show you that many people were unhappy with the level of customer support offered to them. Now, I have heard that the latest models do not have these issues, and that the mold possibility has been eradicated. Just to be safe, I would stick to the higher level models because they do have thicker and more supportive layers. There are knock-offs now too, but their reviews have been haphazard.
Futon Mattresses – Are not just for lumpy college folding-couches. Futons, particularly the high-end 10″+ thick, hand made ones are divine to sleep on. You can get these made organically, which is fantastic for people with environmental sensitivities. They are quite firm, hold up very well, can be rotated and flipped with abandon. They also breathe very well. Downside – there is no spring, so coital actions require more energy. Also, if you sweat, or have an accident, these are quite difficult to dry or clean.
Action Steps You Can Take Now
Comfort level is very subjective, and maybe you aren’t ready to toss your bed to the curb yet. I am a huge advocate of mattress toppers. Both lambs wool and foam toppers can temporarily rescue most mattresses, and buy you comfort and time. When looking at toppers, try to fin one at least 2″ thick, and remember that the are TEMPORARY. They are expected to be disposable, and you should replace them after a year or two.
If you purchase a new firm mattress, you can markedly extend its life and comfort level by using silk, wool, or foam toppers. People with rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia swear that sleeping on a lambs wool topper reduces their joint and muscle pain. Also, by using disposable toppers, you can readily replace the part of a mattress that wears out the fastest, allowing you to extend your mattress dollars considerably. Without these toppers, mattresses that are too firm will create unnecessary pressure points where your body comes in contact with the bed. Diabetics in particular need to make sure that they do not have pressure points in their sleep and this can further impair their blood supply to already compromised tissues.
Also, your mattress was meant to be used with a mattress pad. Get a fitted cotton pad and use it. Invest in good sheet sets. If your sheets have shoddy elastic, or they pill, or do not fit your mattress perfectly, get a new set. Cotton and bamboo sheets are the best in my opinion.
Dr. Miranda’s tips for Mattress Shopping
- Don’t go by price. Many mattresses are made by the same manufacturers and just private labeled. In fact, I had an older model Stearns & Foster pillow top mattress set that retailed for over $4k, but within a year of buying it, I saw my exact same mattress bearing a different brand label (and by exact same – it was identical, right down to the fabric, trim, and stitching) at Costco for $700.
- Look at construction. Number of layers, spring count, types or thicknesses of foam, etc. These are all indicators of quality.
- Plan on dedicating a significant amount of time to mattress shopping. Physically lay down in your preferred sleep position on each one that you are considering, and spend a few minutes there. You may feel silly, but you will never see any of those shoppers again, and you don’t want to make a rushed judgment.
- Remember that men usually prefer a firmer mattress than women, so both parties should be present when choosing their new mattress. Leave the kids and any distractions at home!
- Ask the salesman to leave you alone while you shop. You will tend to rush if they are hovering over you.
- Ask about warranties and get them in writing. Unfortunately most mattress warranties are not worth the paper they are written on, with exclusions for removing the tags, getting marks on the mattress, or actually using the mattress. Know what you are buying, what the exclusions are, and what the fees are for service calls. Ask what percentage of warranties they uphold or honor, right down to the number of beds they replace per year. Also – get it in writing if you will be responsible for restocking fees, shipping the replacement mattress to your home, shipping the old mattress from your home, or any other handling fees.
- Encase your mattress with a waterproof and dustmite proof case. You never know when you may need this protection, but when an incident occurs — you will be thankful you did.
- Replace your box spring when you replace your mattress. I recommend the low-profile box springs that have come out in recent years. They lower the sitting edge of the bed a few inches, which makes it easier to get in and out of bed if you have health issues.
- Remember that most mattress companies will allow you to return your mattress within a specific time frame, usually 15-30 days. So, if you get one home and really hate it – return it.
Mattresses have a definite shelf life, and even ones that say 25 YEARS have been proven to only last 7-10 tops and after 7-8 years the springs and resilience of the materials have broken down to the point where they will contribute to your discomfort. We have already established that when it comes to sleep both quality and quantity are very important. If you are dealing with chronic pain or chronic stress, or if you are doing everything right but still not losing weight, you need to have a look at your mattress.
A lot of people ask me what we sleep on, and we replaced a high-quality futon mattress with a 20″ Stearns & Foster model back in late 2006. We kept that mattress far longer than we should have, because it broke down prematurely. Recently, after great debate, we replaced the Stearns & Foster with a Tempurpedic model. So far, we are really enjoying the reduced pressure points it provides. Between that and the lack of conductive motion – we are easily sleeping longer and getting up less frequently throughout the night. A win-win in my opinion.
Copyright (c) 2014 Miranda Jorgenson. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part with out the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to share this link or print this page and use in its entirely.
1. First published September 17, 2012, doi: 10.1503/cmaj.120876 CMAJ September 17, 2012 cmaj.120876)
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
by drmiranda | Jan 24, 2014 | dietary supplements, network marketing, Plexus Slim Doctor, Uncategorized, weight loss
This isn’t an exciting post but we have to stop throwing the word ‘detox’ around. If you do not define what you mean by it, the term is meaningless, and the vast majority of people are using the term as a symptom catch-all and that is simply not how detoxification works.
DETOX. For such a little word, it is sure used a lot in dietary supplement claims and reports.
Starting a new supplement & you’re feeling bad? You must be detoxing!
How does supplement X work? It detoxes you!
Have a headache? You are detoxing!
Do you have gas & bloating? You are detoxing!
Constipation? Diarrhea? You are detoxing!
You have a rash? You are detoxing!
Not losing weight? Your fat cells need to detox!
Blah, blah, blah.
Let’s start by detoxing the term detox!
I really don’t like the word DETOX. I think it has become highly overused, and most people don’t have a clue what it means or what they are actually referring to when they use the term. So in effect, it has become a vague term that people use when they don’t have anything better to say. In fact, in one British study, a network of 300 career researchers investigating ‘detox supplements and products’ found that no two companies even used the same definition of “detox” and most companies made vague claims without even referencing what “detox means or proof that it actually works.”1
Do I believe that the body accumulates toxins which impair health? Absolutely. Can I think of any science proving or even suggesting that a specific supplement can detox the body of all of these environmental toxins? Absolutely not.
To be clear, this isn’t an exciting blog post. There is nothing exciting about detoxification, especially when so many people have it so spectacularly wrong. First, let’s review some basic physiology. Everything your body ever comes in contact with, and everything you ever breathe in or consume needs to be processed through either your liver, your kidneys, your lungs, your bowels, or through your skin. Water soluble substances don’t pass through the skin readily but are filtered by the kidneys fairly efficiently. Oil-soluble substances can be absorbed readily through the skin and are processed by the liver, and sent through the bowels for elimination. Gaseous substances, like anesthetic, are cleared directly from the lungs. Most of the toxins you are exposed to will be via your mouth in the form of what you eat and drink. Looking at the digestive tract for a moment, consider it a ~30 foot tube connecting your mouth to your anus. Approximately 80% of your immune system is centered in and along that tube, and maintaining its balance is a single, fragile layer of cells only one-cell thick. If this layer of cells is damaged, the selective barrier loses its selectivity, and foods, toxins, and other substances that would normally pass through your system with little consequence, can now be absorbed directly into your system (where your body can mobilize antibodies and inflammation for protection against this onslaught). In addition, there is an intricate balance of over 500 different types of bacteria (about 3 pounds worth all together) that live along is this tube which form part of a collective ecosystem to help you digest food, produce vitamins, make nutrients available, regulate hormones, and excrete toxic byproducts of your metabolism. When this lining or bacterial ecosystem become impaired, then you suffer from a wide variety of health complaints because your organ systems simply cannot operate at full function. Now, your body being the masterpiece of engineering it is, it tries to maintain an equilibrium, or ‘steady state’. So it takes these substances that it recognizes as foreign and it walls them off or stores them in the tissues it deems less critical for survival. As far as your body is concerned, your fat stores are less critical to your immediate survival needs than the health of your ligaments, nerves, and muscles. So initially, your body packs away these metabolites and toxins in fatty tissues and this can lead to cysts, lipomas, or benign tumors. Next in the line of potential storage spots, your body likes the myelin sheath – that fatty layer of insulation that surrounds your nerves and aids with nerve conduction. Connective tissues like ligaments, bones, and blood, and then tissues such as nerve and muscle tissue come next. Areas bathed in fluid, like joints are always prime targets for metabolite deposition (an example would be uric acid crystals depositing in joints in people with gout). If toxic and metabolite exposure goes on long enough, entire organ systems can be affected and thereby become dysfunctional.
Getting back to your gut, many supplement companies do not take into consideration actual human physiology when they talk ‘detox’. I swear that most people think the word detox is synonymous with the word poop. Let me be very clear, just because something makes you have a bowel movement – that doesn’t mean you are detoxing. Every symptom you have is not a sign of detoxing, nor is it a sign you need to detox. Nothing gets me more wound up than all of these ambiguous posts online that blame every negative side effect or symptom on toxins. And please, don’t get me started on all of these posts where people come to a group forum and ask a legitimate health question, only to have their symptoms brushed off or minimized by some well-intentioned but ill-informed individual under the guise that “all is fine, you are just detoxing!” As a health care professional, when I see someone referring to the word ‘detox’, I read their statement as “I don’t know what I’m talking about and have nothing better to say, so I am going to baffle them with BS”.
On a very simplistic level, when we were embryos and our guts formed, one collection of nerves, the ‘neural crest’, forms and divides with one section becoming the central nervous system and the other section becoming the enteric nervous system. These two nervous systems are connected by the longest of your cranial nerves – the vagus nerve. This vagus nerve starts in the brain and terminates in the gut and this is the source of the brain-gut connection that you read about. It is also why you have ‘gut feelings’, why eating certain foods are addictive or simply make you feel good, why you want to eat when you are stressed, why food sensitivities can cause behavioral changes, and why medication such as antidepressants can cause stomach upset or nausea.
When most people refer to detoxification they are referring to liver function, or to Phase 1 and Phase 2 conjugation in the liver specifically. This is truly your major site of detoxification and it is the organ most intimately connected to hormone balance. In Phase 1, blood carrying toxins enters the liver, and the liver prepares these toxins , usually moving them towards being water soluble, and makes them more accessible to Phase 2. In Phase 2, there are a sophisticated set of reactions involving a multitude of things, including Cytochrome P450. In all, there are 6 main types of reactions that occur in the liver – with each one being completely chemically different. That is why there is no magic detoxifying agent that can clean you out entirely. Of these 6 main reactions, 3 (glucuronidation, methylation, and sulfation) are the most likely to be impaired, and the other three are more likely to affect your hormone levels.
- During sulfation, your body adds sulfur groups to certain toxins so they can be removed. Your body requires sulfur-bearing amino acids like cysteine and methionine, and B-vitamins like B12 and B6, and folic acid for these processes.
- During methylation, your body requires methyl donors to facilitate the toxin removal. Up to 40% of the population may carry genetic anomalies which hinder this process.
- During glucuronidation, your body requires glucuronic acid, various B vitamins and a significant amount of specific magnesium ions to work properly.
This all leads to glutathione conjugation, where your body then uses master antioxidants like glutathione, superoxide dismutase, and catalase, along with the antioxidant vitamins A, C, E, and selenium.
OK, so have I bored you to death yet? This is as exciting as watching paint dry, right? But if you have stuck with me this long, you might be asking me what this really means? In a nutshell, it means that there is no single supplement or product that can act as a total detoxing agent. Anyone who suggests otherwise, is steering you wrong and just doesn’t understand basic physiology. CBC Marketplace (click link to watch the video) , Canada’s version of 20/20 style news exposè , recently did a show where they had a group of sorority girls from my alma mater follow Dr. Oz’s popular 48 hour detox or act as a control group. Extensive blind testing was provided by a team of medical specialists before and after the ‘detox’, and would you be surprised by their conclusion that they could discern absolutely no differences between the two groups upon the completion of the detox program? This leads us to a very important point, if you can’t find any biochemical proof that toxin levels are decreasing, then what are you really doing? There is an incredible lack of scientific literature that supports most detoxification claims; not only can people not agree what detoxification is, but they can’t prove that they are causing it.
You can take specific supplements or combinations of supplements to pull, chelate, or adsorb (not absorb) specific toxins from the body, like using chlorella to bind with excess mercury you may have in your body from consuming shellfish or having amalgam fillings; using EDTA to pull lead from environmental exposure; or using N-acetyl-cysteine to detoxify from acetaminophen exposure. But (big BUT) when it comes to detoxification, there is no magic bullet. You can’t go around claiming that every supplement under the sun is ‘detoxing’. They just don’t work that way, and even if a substance supports a step of detoxification, it doesn’t cause detoxification in its own right, and blaming all negative symptoms on detoxification is haphazard and potentially dangerous.
I have kept a running list of the ‘detox’ references I have seen in the online groups I follow over the past few weeks. Here is a list of symptoms that I have seen people blame on supplementation:
- hives and other skin rashes
- weight gain
- nausea, vomiting
- inability to concentrate, mental fog
- heart palpitations
These are not symptoms of supplement-induced detoxification!!! These are symptoms of dehydration and starvation. When many people undertake a detox plan or a new diet, they dramatically cut their caloric intake and unfortunately the do not consume enough water, or consume substances with diuretic properties which therefore increase their odds of becoming dehydrated. On day one of a typical ‘detox ‘/ diet, people often feel bad. They are hungry, may experience dizziness or irritability, and feel fatigued. By day two, their body starts breaking down muscle mass to provide them with energy and they may experience additional mood swings, difficulty sleeping, or overwhelming fatigue. By the third day, they are likely having headaches, muscle pain or stiffness, and even dizziness or nausea. Rolling into the fourth and fifth days (if they have lasted that long), their body has started to adapt to the new situation and slowed down your metabolism so they don’t feel the same degree of hunger, but they still may be dealing with altered mood, headaches, and nausea. Many people who report a 6-8lb weight loss during the initial period of any detox or diet are truly losing water and a small degree of muscle mass. They are not losing fat! You will notice that when you look at symptoms in this light, they are nearly all truly the result of dehydration and lack of calories, they have nothing to do with ‘detoxing’.
Yes, we can take steps to reduce our intake of toxins, and that may be the most practical approach to detoxification, but we can also take supplements which reduce inflammation or support optimal liver functioning so that our livers are best equipped to deal with the chemicals we assault them with. For anyone interested in detoxing, it should be clear that this isn’t a process you undertake in a few days or weeks, it should be a lifestyle change where you eat ‘clean’ and provide your body with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, along with vitamins and minerals, and other key nutrients to ensure that our systems are always handling toxins adequately. When someone tells me that they want to ‘detox’, my number one question is what they want to accomplish. Most commercial detox programs are nothing more than fancily packaged bowel stimulants. They make for expensive laxatives, and have no proven, measurable results, and for that reason, I do not recommend them.
While I am at it, I want to tackle ‘gluten sensitivity‘ and ‘candida overgrowth’. As these are two other catch-alls that get as much ill-informed press as detoxification. First, let’s look at gluten. Do I believe that gluten is an issue? Yes. Do I think it is anywhere as prevalent as what people like to say? No. In fact, a recent study2 found that people with self-reported (and to be fair, the gluten sensitivity tests are horribly unreliable) gluten sensitivity actually had no physical reactions from consuming gluten and instead experienced a total elimination of all of their GI symptoms by eliminating FODMAP’s (Fermentable Oligo-Di-Mono-saccharides and Polyphenols, or rather fermentable, poorly absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates) from their diet. FODMAP’s are what we would traditionally consider to be high-residue foods, things that linger in the gut and prove a fertile ground for bacteria to grow and feed off of. When bacteria thrive in disproportionate quantities or in imbalanced ratios, people can experience significant gas, bloating, cramping, constipation, diarrhea, etc. So what are these FODMAPS? The most common ones are fructose containing substances such as fruit, agave, honey, and HFCS. Oligosaccharides such as beans, lentils, wheat, onions, cabbage, and the other cruciferous vegetables. Disaccharides like dairy (particularly in unfermented dairy products), and sugar alcohols like xylitol, malitol, and sorbitol, which are found in many diet products. So looking at this list, you can be eating what you think is a perfectly healthy diet but causing undue havoc with your gastrointestinal tract and immune system. A lot of people are jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon as of late. In fact, I have colleagues who make their living being gluten-free gurus. I have sat down with internationally known scholars in the field and I just don’t see that gluten is the whole answer. Face it, we were all raised on gluten, and while there were a small portion of the population that have celiac disease and cannot metabolize gluten, the majority of us, for hundreds of generations, did just fine with it. It was the advent of genetic modification that heralded the onset of all of this gluten fuss. It countries that do not allow GMO wheat, they do not have the same gluten issues that we face in the United States. I will say that in the allergy blood tests I run on people, I frequently see wheat as an allergic agent but infrequently see gluten, so my personal experience supports the findings of this and other studies.
Lastly, I have received a bunch of questions lately about candida, and specifically the validity of the candida saliva test. I am of the professional opinion that everyone has candida, it is just a matter of whether your immune system keeps it in check or not.
Truthfully, candida is like Epstein-Barr virus; if you go looking for it you are going to find it. It may be more advantageous and easier on your wallet to simply treat for candida if you believe you have symptoms of candida overgrowth. Now, the candida saliva test (where you spit a mouthful of saliva into a glass of distilled water and look for ‘strings’) isn’t overly accurate.3 It can be better said that it is a test of saliva viscosity or thickness, it isn’t reproducible, nor is it specific. Yes, some people have oral candida (also called thrush) and will produce a positive spit test, but many people have candida-free mouths but may have candida over growths on their skin, or in their intestines or vagina’s. Yeast is an equal-opportunity offender. You can spend hundreds of dollars having blood, stool, or skin tests done, but does that really change your course of treatment? If you believe you have it, it may be a lot easier and cheaper just to treat for it, and treat for the appropriate length of time* (*most treatments need to be for a minimum of six weeks to be truly successful). Now I am officially on the record as saying I feel the candida saliva test is a no-harm-no-foul test. You can do it if you want, it doesn’t cost you anything but 10 minutes of your time, and it may or may not help you confirm that you have an issue. I do not think it is fool-proof or diagnostic by any means, but some people need to see things in order for them to believe them, and this is a tangible test that anyone can do but it should not be something you bet the bank on!
1. Detox Dossier. Retrieved 1/24/14 : http://www.senseaboutscience.org/data/files/resources/48/Detox-Dossier-Embargoed-until-0001-5th-jan-2009.pdf
2. No effects of gluten in patients with self-reported non-celiac gluten sensitivity after dietary reduction of fermentable, poorly absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates. Retrieved 1/24/14 from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23648697
by drmiranda | Jan 11, 2014 | dietary supplements, network marketing, Plexus Slim Doctor, Uncategorized, weight loss
As I mentioned in a previous blog post, My Doctor Doesn’t Recommend Plexus Slim (or supplements in general) , statistics show that the average medical doctor received only 23.9 hours of education in nutrition during their entire medical school career.1 Typically that education centered around fat, protein, and carbohydrate metabolism, and identifying overt signs and symptoms of nutrient deficiency or toxicity because National Boards love to ask questions about things you will virtually never see like beriberi (thiamine deficiency) or pellagra (niacin deficiency). So, in all actuality, most physicians never learn much at all about individual nutritional substances outside of common vitamins and minerals unless they have taken a personal interest in it and searched out more information on their own time.
So when you show up to your doctor’s appointment wanting them to approve you taking a supplement, chances are very high that they will be completely unfamiliar with the ingredients and their knee-jerk reaction will be to tell you not to take it.
So, how do you get your doctor’s consent to take a supplement when they don’t know anything about it?
The single most important thing you can do to aid your doctor in their decision is to provide them with appropriate information. Your doctor doesn’t have the time or the resources to look up 15 separate ingredients while you are at your appointment, so you need to do this for them. If you present to the doctors office prepared with the following, you have dramatically increased your odds of getting appropriate medical advice as to whether that supplement is worth you trying.
- Print off the SUPPLEMENT FACTS box/sheet on the product you wish to take. This is the ‘snapshot’ of the label that lists all ingredients, in order of quantity, and lists product dosing, and any warnings or contraindications. You can get print these off from any supplement company’s website as they are required to make these available to you.
- If your prospective supplement has a study published on their website, print off a copy of that too. Remember though, that many supplement companies do not publish studies on their supplements so they do not run into hot water with the FDA by making a product claim.
- Look up the main ingredients in the product and print off an information sheet about each one. Use reputable websites that your doctor would be inclined to positively receive information from such as MedlinePlus, WebMD Supplement Center, or the Physicians Desk Reference – Herbal Medicines. Please don’t use Wikipedia or other questionable sources! If at all possible, keep the print out on each ingredient to a single page – that way your doctor can quickly skim the information.
- Use Pubmed to print off Abstracts (not the full studies) of any of the ingredients in relation to health conditions you may have. Here is an example I searched for – chlorogenic acid, weight loss and this study pops up. ***Be careful here, because few nutritional journals are indexed at Pubmed, and the nutritional studies posted in medical journals are often AGAINST supplementation, or use rat or other lab animal models and are not based on human trials.
- Lastly, have these all together in a file or envelope that you can present to our doctor and NEVER ask them “I want your approval to take ________”. This type of question opens them up to legal liability . It is far better to word your question the following way, “Is there anything in this supplement that would be contraindicated with my medications or health history?” That way you are not asking for their personal opinion, nor their approval, but you are doing your due diligence that the supplement should be safe for you. Remember, the doctor works for you, and you hire them for their expertise. If they shoot down all supplementation, then they are not working in your best interest. For this reason, I recommend you also print out my blog post My Doctor Doesn’t Recommend Plexus Slim (or Supplements in General) because it covers the exact statistics of risk for dietary supplements and counters any arguments an uninformed doctor may give you.
1. Adams, KM, Lindell, KC, et al. Status of nutritional education in medical schools. 1,2,3,4. Am J Clin Nutrition, April 2006, vol 83. No 4, 941S-944S.
Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
by drmiranda | Dec 28, 2013 | dietary supplements, MLM, network marketing, sales, Uncategorized, weight loss
I’m going to let you in on a little secret: Doctors don’t know everything.
The word doctor itself originated as an agentive noun of the Latin verb docēre, meaning ‘to teach’. That ‘teaching’ part is something that a lot of modern doctors have forgotten. In our haste to get patients in and out of the office in as little time as possible, many of us have bypassed the teaching part all together in order to go directly to that little white prescription pad.
The big losers in all of this is that the lovely little town doctors of yesteryear are a dying breed and insurance companies and actuaries are dictating how doctors treat their patients. This is compounded by the fact that the advent of the internet has turned our patients into armchair researchers who present to our offices with pages of print-outs on what they have self-diagnosed themselves with, or on treatments that they would like to explore with or without our help. And so, in our haste to process patients quickly, we find that it is easier to NOT recommend something that we are unfamiliar with than to look into it further for our patients.
I’m not saying that there are not great doctors out there, because that couldn’t be farther from the truth, but the unfortunate statistic stands that the average doctor received only 23.9 hours of education in nutrition during their entire medical school career.1 Nutrition is a broad term — and typically involves learning about the wonders of fat, protein, and carbohydrate metabolism and recognizing overt signs of individual nutrient deficiency. Very, very few doctors can claim that they learned much, if anything, about specific dietary supplements or herbs.
So when you go to your doctor and consult with them about the safety of a dietary supplement, be prepared that your doctor’s knee-jerk reaction to your question may be to deny, deny, deny. Here is my rundown on the most common arguments you may hear from your doctor on why you shouldn’t take a dietary supplement:
- Argument 1: Dietary supplements are not regulated by the FDA, therefore they are unsafe. This is the same FDA that brought you Raxar, Tequin, Duract, Vioxx, Bextra, sibutramine, dexfenfluramine, Rezulin, Avandia — all drugs they deemed ‘safe’ but had to pull off the market because of overwhelming adverse reactions, including death. The same FDA that approved all of those artificial joints, repair mesh, and surgical hardware that you see mentioned in attorney commercials (and now subject to mass recall and class-action lawsuits) every time you turn on your TV. The same FDA that routinely extorts nutritional supplement companies.2 The same FDA that routinely hires all of its upper level and leadership positions directly from drug companies (or drug companies hire directly out of the ranks of the FDA in a well known, ‘I’ll scratch your back if you will scratch mine’ system). I think I made my point. The fact that the FDA declares something to be safe is more indicative of a multimillion dollar payout than bonafied, objective science. But I digress, the FDA does not regulate dietary supplements per se but they do heavily regulate the manufacturing facilities that dietary supplements are made in and strictly regulate what companies say about dietary supplements. That is why it is illegal for a cherry farmer to post on his website that cherry juice is known to reduce the uric acid crystals associated with gout, but Pfizer can spend millions of dollars a year advertising how Viagra can give you enough wood to build an ark.
- Argument 2: I’ve treated dozens of patients that have _______ [insert health horror story: liver failure, kidney damage, brain cancer, tennis elbow, died, etc.] from taking ‘natural’ supplements. I will be the first to agree that not all supplements are safe. Furthermore, just because something is natural, does not mean that it is without risk, but I will also be the first to point out that 20,500 people died in a given year from FDA approved medicines and zero people died from ‘unapproved by the FDA’ supplements.3 If you look at Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs) in general, the FDA reports that there are over 2 million ADRs yearly resulting in ~100,000 deaths, making it the 4th leading cause of death ahead of pulmonary disease, diabetes, AIDS, pneumonia, accidents, and automobile deaths.4 Yet according to the Governments own Government Accountability Office (GAO) , between 2008 and 2011, the FDA received 6,307 Adverse Event Reports (AERs) for dietary supplements, this averages just over 1500 per year yet, according to the GAO’s own report, over half of the US population takes dietary supplements. This means that nearly 200 million people are taking dietary supplements in a given year, yet only 1500 people report an adverse reaction. Of those 6307 AERs, only one death was reported and it was “vaguely and probably irrelevantly concurrent with an “unknown dietary supplement or homeopathic agent”—with no deaths reported before 2009. By way of contrast, the same report shows that FDA-approved drugs caused 80% of Poison Control fatalities. More than 100,000 calls to Poison Control Centers, 56,000 emergency room visits, 2,600 hospitalizations, and nearly 500 deaths each year are attributed to Acetaminophen (Tylenol) alone.”5 So, forgive me if I call ‘BS’ on your doctor personally treating dozens of people that had organ damage from the supplements they bought at the health food store. It is statistically impossible.
- Argument 3 : Supplements don’t do anything but give you expensive urine and the manufacturers just want you to spend more and more money with them. Cough, cough, pot calling the kettle black! Hmmm, and big pharma has your best interests at heart? What about those hospitals that bill you $20 for that single aspirin or ibuprofen tablet? No matter how you break it down, supplements do not compete on any level with the drug companies. The top 50 pharmaceutical companies are responsible for $610 billion of annual revenue.6 Compare that to the nutritional industry which had revenues that topped $32 billion for dietary supplements during the same year.7 The simple fact is that most supplements cost a mere fraction of their drug counterparts, and no one makes a lot from individual dietary supplements because they are natural substances and therefore cannot be patented. That is the exact reason why you don’t find dozens of double-blind, placebo-controlled trials on supplements – there is no money in it. A company isn’t going to hire a team of researchers and spend tens of thousands (if not more) to do a trial proving the efficacy of green tea extract, when a) they legally can’t promote any results that prove the supplement did something, b) the margins or mark-up on supplements and raw materials is comparatively very low, and c) all of the other manufacturers that sell green tea extract could use the same data to sell their product (why help your competition?). There is no practical advantage for them to pay for studies. Furthermore, most supplement manufacturers would be required to identify or disclose the exact ratios of ingredients in their proprietary formulas in published data otherwise it would not be reproducible by third parties. Given the low margins and lack of patents, you can see why supplement manufacturers would be reluctant to disclose the only information that protects their trade secrets. Personally, I am more suspect of the doctor writing prescriptions for that expensive new statin drug that just so happens to sponsor their annual continuing education Caribbean cruise.
- Argument 4: Supplement companies pay big money to Google to cover up negative stories about adverse reactions. Please!!! Let.me.repeat: 610 Billion vs. 32 Billion, and 50 big players (companies) vs. tens of thousands. The doctors that would make this asinine statement are the same ones that deny that vaccine manufacturers aren’t in it for the money. The same doctors that figure you must have been born with a metformin deficiency but taking chromium to regulate your insulin levels is ‘crazy’. There isn’t a supplement manufacturer out there that has enough disposable funds to pay off Google or any other search engine. Remember, the mainstream media covers up pharmaceutical negligence all of the time, after all, who is their #1 advertising group? The next time you watch television, grab a pen and a piece of paper and keep a running tally of every supplement commercial for every drug commercial. That alone ought to tell you who controls the media.
- Argument 5: Supplements don’t ‘cure’ you. They are right on that. It is against the law for a supplement manufacturer to ever report or claim that their supplements ‘did’ anything. That is why every supplement advertisement or piece of literature that you will ever see contains the disclaimer :This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. It is also why supplements rely on anecdotal testimonials of patients to promote them. But I would also hazard to say that the vast majority of drugs don’t cure anything either. They simply address one set of symptoms, often resulting in another set of symptoms, which results in the need to take ever-increasing amounts of medications. This is the real reason why the average American takes 10 prescriptions per year. You are given one medication for one symptom, which results in a drug-induced nutrient depletion, which causes your blood pressure to rise, so you are given a medication for that, which affects your kidneys, so you are given a new medication for that, which constipates you and gives you headaches, so you are given two more medications for that, and before you know it you are taking 10 drugs per day and no one has ever checked for any drug interactions, you end up with liver damage from your 10 medications, but your doctor is more concerned about that weight loss supplement that might help you lose 50 lbs and therefore not need any of those aforementioned medications.
In my 10 years of having a nutritional based practice, I have run into all sorts of doctors. Some are ecstatic that their patients are being proactive and making changes to improve their health. Some deflect nutritional questions under the guise that it isn’t their specialty, so they would rather not comment on it. Others get their ego all tied up in a knot when their patients seek advice from other practitioners. Some are so indoctrinated at the Church of The Mighty Pharmaceutical that they simply cannot rationalize anyone questioning their sacred doctrine. Regardless of what type of doctor you have, you have the right and the obligation to take ownership of your own health. If that means that your doctor isn’t familiar with the ingredients in a supplement that you would like to take, find someone else to help you. That may be another doctor, it may be your pharmacist. You may simply need to reword how you ask your question. Instead of saying, “Hey Doc, Do you approve of this supplement?”, you should ask, “Is there anything in this supplement that would be contraindicated with my medications or health history?” You may not think that there is a big difference between these two questions, but there is a world of difference legally. The first requires their medical opinion and approval, the second only is indicative that there is no overt contraindications and does not require the physicians approval. I have seen some doctors spouting off anti-supplement rhetoric on their blogs and Facebook pages lately, and it saddens me greatly. Reading their posts, they are the ones fear-mongering and creating hysteria instead of offering genuine support or information to the public. The Hippocratic oath centers on the tenet of First, do no harm. In addition, the modern Hippocratic oath contains the statements, “I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person’s family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick. I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.”8 As a doctor, I find it abhorrent that another physician would be so callous to say that diet and exercise are the ONLY answer to weight loss. There isn’t a doctor out there that has been in practice for more than a day that hasn’t seen patients that were fit and active but over weight. If it were only as easy as diet and exercise no one would be fat. Now, lifestyle modification is crucial to overall health, but some people simply need that added boost that supplements can give them. Completely ignoring drug induced nutrient depletion, or the grossly inadequate nutrient content of modern food, it is virtually impossible to get everything you need from diet alone.
So if your doctor isn’t familiar with supplements, or tells you not to take something, you need to ask them specifically ‘WHY?” If it is one of the cop out arguments mentioned above, you now know how to react. If they simply do not know, feel free to search out a second or even a third opinion. If there is a genuine reason why you shouldn’t take a supplement, such as pregnancy, or a history of kidney or heart disease, then you did your due diligence and got appropriate advice. And always remember, doctors don’t know everything and the really good ones are never afraid to admit that.
1. Adams, KM, Lindell, KC, et al. Status of nutritional education in medical schools. 1,2,3,4. Am J Clin Nutrition, April 2006, vol 83. No 4, 941S-944S.
3. United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC). 2008
Copyright (c) 2013 Miranda Jorgenson. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part with out the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to share this link or print this page and use in its entirely.
by drmiranda | Dec 13, 2013 | business, diet, dietary supplements, Uncategorized, weight gain, weight loss, what happens when you stop taking Plexus, what to do, yo-yo
One of the few negative things about weight loss is that some people are left with focal areas of saggy skin. Not only is this skin unsightly, but it can create hygiene issues and physical discomfort. Even minor weight loss can result in lumpy, less resilient skin that is prone to cellulite. Larger amounts of weight loss can leave some people with excessive amounts of hanging, sagging skin; which can be prone to skin irritation and even infection or chronic inflammation. Some people find their abdominal skin is so loose that it appears more like an alien landscape than the body they have come to know. It just doesn’t feel like “you”.
It used to be that you had two options on dealing with it – you could live with it or you could get it surgically removed. Well, I am here to tell you that there is a lot that can be done, and if you are still in process with your weight loss journey, there is even more we can do to minimize those dreaded bingo wings and abdominal aprons (pannus).
I remember looking at my own abdomen shortly after my second child was born, and thinking “when did I become a shar pei?” You can be ecstatic about accomplishing your weight loss goals but feel demoralized every time you look in the mirror. It is not fun, and has to be the least sexy feeling in the world! So this is what I did, and this is what I recommend to my patients and clients:
Wrinkles and skin folds are cute on babies and dogs. On us, not so much!2
First, never under estimate the power of DRY BRUSHING. Dry Brushing is a technique involving a dry brush (shocking, I know!) where you make long sweeping passes lightly over your skin. Always moving towards your lymph nodes and heart.
Arrows indicate the direction of your passes with the dry brush1
I recommend that you start with your feet and work up towards your waist, then move to your hands and brush towards your heart, finishing with your neck and torso – also directing all brush strokes towards the heart. Remember, always use a dry brush, and do this before your shower so you wash off any toxins that you release. Some people chose to purchase two brushes for this task, one a small brush that straps to the palm of your hand, and the other, a similar brush attached to a stick to make reaching inaccessible areas easier.
So how does this work, well, first we need to remember that your skin is your largest organ, and is occasionally referred to as your third kidney because it eliminates approximately a pound of toxins per day, mostly through your sweat glands. In addition, over 33% of your blood supply is directed to your skin but it is one of the last areas to receive nutrients, so it is subject to showing signs of deficiency. The skin closely interacts with the lymphatic system, another powerful system of detoxification.
ü Dry brushing stimulates lymphatic drainage and the elimination of toxins
ü It encourages circulation and revascularization of hypoxic tissues
ü By increasing blood flow, it encourages nerve conduction and wound healing
ü It stimulates your immune system
ü It stimulates the production of collagen and elastin, thus tightening skin that has lost some of its elasticity
ü It removes layers of dead skin and encourages the growth of new skin cells
ü It improves skin texture and reduces signs of cellulite
ü It stimulates hormone production and oil gland secretion
ü It helps with more even distribution of fat deposits
ü It improves nervous system functioning by stimulating nerve ending firing and receptors in the skin
ü It is quick and inexpensive
Tips – use a light touch on thinner areas of skin, and a stronger touch on thicker areas of skin (like the abdomen, legs, and feet). It should not hurt, but it should feel invigorating. Do 8 to 10 strokes on each area before moving on. When you first get started with dry brushing, you may only be able to tolerate a few minutes of it. Once established though, it should take 10-15 minutes to cover your entire body. Do not brush moist skin as you can cause micro tears in the outer layer of skin. If you can dry brush during your weight loss journey, then you may avoid loose skin all together. If you have stubborn areas, like under the arms, love handles, or a pannus, – you can spend extra time brushing them to stimulate the skin. If you have areas that are especially sensitive to the dry brushing, you can avoid them for the time being, the same can be said for damaged or wounded skin. Never dry brush skin wounds or infections. Always shower after dry brushing, and if you can end your shower with 15 seconds or so of cold water, that will further stimulate the skin. I recommend dry brushing 6 days per week, and using a salt or mineral scrub on the 7th day. This gives your body a break to further detoxify and regenerate. After your shower, massage a high grade plant oil (olive, coconut, almond, flax, sesame, avocado, castor oil with essential oils, etc.)
Other things you can do now to avoid your outer shar pei and encourage skin tightening:
1. Limit sun exposure. Avoid sunburns and tanning beds.
2. Get a massage. Massage therapy stimulates circulation, and can release pockets of inflammation.
3. Keep hydrated! Another reason for you to be drinking that water.
4. Increase your consumption of raw foods. Raw foods contain enzymes that promote immune function and digestion, and decrease inflammation.
5. Consume high quality protein. Your body needs high quality protein to replace and repair its own supply. Collagen and elastin both require protein building blocks.
6. Make sure to wash chlorine from skin after swimming. Avoid putting chemicals or artificial creams or moisturizers on your skin.
7. Use alcohol in moderation. Alcohol can severely impact collagen synthesis.
8. Use seaweed or other ‘wraps’ to help tone the skin
9. Take at least 1 Epsom salt bath per week to pull toxins and to increase your serum levels of magnesium (at least 2 cups of Epsom salts in a bath for at least 20 minutes)
10. Use an abdominal or sports wrap on areas you tend to be losing too quickly from so that the skin remains compressed.
11. Avoid cigarette smoke at all cost!
Healthy skin requires normal levels of collagen and elastin. Dry brushing will encourage the production of these, but supplementation is likely necessary.
Vitamin C is the backbone of collagen formation. 500-3000 mg per day is the average daily requirement range. If you are losing weight quickly or already have lose skin, you will require doses towards the higher end of the spectrum.
Magnesium is required for hyaluronic acid production (the gel-like substance that is found in skin, joints, and soft tissue). It is also required for over 200 different biochemical processes in the body.
Omega 3 fatty acids support the fatty membrane structure of all cells and improve skin repair and turn over.
Lysine, argenine, glycine, and proline – amino acids necessary for collagen and elastin production. Glycine also plays a role in blood glucose regulation, muscle repair, digestion, and glutathione production. You can supplement with these individually or use a broad spectrum amino acid containing supplement like whey protein to get in all of the amino acids.
Bone Broth – One of the traditional foods that is rarely found in the modern diet, it has been suggested that a lack of bone broth (and its associated minerals, gelatin, and collagen) is one of the major reasons why arthritis is so prevalent now. Minerals found in bone broth are highly absorbable, far more than from most dietary supplements. If you make your own bone broth (which I highly recommend) roast your bones first, then gently boil them with your cut vegetables and 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar to help make the minerals more absorbable. You know you’ve made a great bone broth when you refrigerate it and find a thick layer of gel on it. When you cook meat, try cooking it on the bone for additional collagen and proteoaminoglycans.
Green tea – a potent source of catechins, which help with collagen and elastin production. Enjoy a few cups of green tea each week to reap its benefits.
Copyright (c) 2013 Miranda Jorgenson. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part with out the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to share this link or print this page and use in its entirely.
1. Drybrush picture. Retrieved 12/3/2013 from http://mayamoonhealingarts.com/dry-skin-brushing/
2. Shar pei. Source: imgfave.com via DoanPhuong on Pinterest, Retrieved 12/3/2012 from http://www.gracielushihtzu.com/baby-shair-pei
3. Pannus. Retrieved 12/3/2013 from: http://www.eplasty.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=627&catid=173:volume-12-eplasty-2012&Itemid=121
by drmiranda | Nov 26, 2013 | diet, dietary supplements, fat, health, obesity, plexus slim, Plexus Slim Doctor, Uncategorized, weight gain, weight loss
There is so much information and misinformation about weight loss on the internet that it is hard to wade through it all. Everyone has a different theory – it is fats, it is carbs, it is meat, it is dairy, it is preservatives, it is too many calories, it is not enough exercise, it is an inevitable part of aging, it is estrogens, it is not enough testosterone, it is mercury in retrograde… blah, blah, blah… Surely someone must have some answers!
Well, ten years of nutritional practice has taught me that no one has all of the answers. If you find someone who claims otherwise – RUN the other way! Weight loss science is constantly changing and it is as mercurial as the people who espouse individual diet plans. Quite simply, there is no quick fix and there is no single plan that will work for 100% of everyone. Period.
What I can tell you is that there are certain hormones that play key roles in many people’s weight gain or inability to lose weight.
1. Your body is not producing enough adiponectin. Adiponectin is a protein specific to fat cells and it is believed to play a role in the development of insulin resistance and atherosclerosis. Typically, the more body fat you carry, the lower your adiponectin levels, with increased levels of visceral fat (that fat hidden in your abdomen, packed around your internal organs) being especially correlated to decreased levels of adiponectin. Almost every symptom associated with metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance can be directly tied to adiponectin, so – how do you make more of this hormone and head off these problems? First, you need to increase your magnesium intake with supplements (like BioCleanse, or magnesium glycinate) and magnesium rich foods (raw spinach, pumpkin seeds, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, fish, brown rice, bananas, figs, avocados, dark chocolate, etc.). Second, you should look into fish oil (omega 3 fatty acid) supplementation and exercise to increase your adiponectin levels.
2. Insulin imbalance. Think of insulin as a key that unlocks your cells so your body can take the glucose (sugars) in your blood stream and store it away in the cell for later. If you don’t have enough insulin, your circulating blood sugars remain too high, and these negatively affect your vasculature system, your fat storage, your blood pressure, your ability to heal, and even your brain. Much of the medical community thinks that insulin resistance stems from the body not having enough insulin, but other researchers, like Dr. Mark Hyman, MD, believe that too much insulin is the problem. He postulates that elevated levels of circulating insulin are even more problematic, and that many of the drugs and methods used to treat elevated blood sugar levels , actually cause the body’s tissues to be flooded with too much insulin, which slowly cause your body’s cells to become resistant to it, which means that greater and greater levels of insulin are needed to see any effect, which leads to vicious blood sugar and insulin swings, making these hormones rollercoaster throughout the day. The ingredients in Plexus Slim support the normalization of your insulin resistance. In addition, some studies have shown that consuming 2 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar before a high fat meal may work as well as drugs at decreasing blood sugar levels. If you consume artificial sweeteners, do yourself a giant favor and STOP!
3. Too much ghrelin. Ghrelin is your hunger hormone and it is found in the cells that line your stomach. It stimulates the hunger center of the brain and makes you desire sweet or rich foods. In fact, it is so efficient at stimulating your hunger centers, that elevated levels of ghrelin will make you feel the same way as if your were in full starvation mode – desperately craving the richest, highest calorie foods you can imagine. Furthermore, it makes you feel unsatisfied with the amount and quality of food you have eaten, whether you are truly full or not. It’s why you can slip in that piece of pecan pie or chocolate cake for dessert when you are already uncomfortably full from eating that big turkey dinner. A classic sign that you have too much ghrelin is that you feel you have room for dessert, or you find you are a bit hungry an hour or so after you eat. You fridge-cruisers know who you are! Ghrelin cycles in 4 hour increments, so typically you would be hungriest 4 hours after your last meal. So how do you address ghrelin? There are a few different things you can do. First, make sure you are getting enough sleep. 8 hours of sleep per night is the ideal. If you are getting less, or have poor quality sleep, please know that sleep deprivation causes your ghrelin levels to increase. Protein intake also staves off the release of elevated ghrelin levels, so make sure that each meal starts off with high quality protein sources (this is particularly important for breakfast). Consuming a small bowl of broth or soup before a meal is an excellent way to prevent ghrelin levels from rising too much.
4. Cortisol overload. We are designed for fight or flight. Cortisol is produced as a response to stress (and who isn’t stressed nowadays?). It increases your cravings for sweets and carbohydrates, it increases muscle breakdown for energy production, it increases the percentage of fat that is stored in your abdominal area, and it increases your levels of depression and anxiety – which make you eat more, which further increases your cortisol levels, creating a vicious cycle, resulting in you feeling tired and burnt out all of the time. Supplements such as fish oil, Rhodiola, lactium, magnesium, DHEA, and b-vitamins can all help reduce cortisol levels. Other things that have a positive effect include slow exercise like yoga or walking, meditating, praying, or just getting into a ‘zone’ where you let your creativity reign. Limiting coffee, and making sure you get enough sleep are other ways to keep cortisol levels normal.
So before you give up he fight, have a good look at these factors and see which ones may pertain to you and take the action steps needed to achieve your ideal weight. I have found Plexus Slim to be an excellent tool for my patients and clients in achieving their ideal weight in a safe and efficient manner. It truly is the non-diet, because it never involves meal replacements, shakes, calorie counting, points, or anything else. It simply helps to normalize insulin resistance and inflammation levels so your body can release the weight it’s been hanging on to. In addition, it makes it easy to make healthier food choices. You didn’t gain those 40 extra pounds in a month, and it will take you time to lose it, but the key is you. You have to draw that line in the sand and start something. 4 months from now, you can be the same weight you are now (or even heavier!), and still have those aches and pains, fatigue, gastrointestinal issues, etc., or 4 months from now you can feel like a million bucks. No one can ever force you to change because the choice truly is yours, but, if you want help and are sincere about making change, I will help you every step of the way!
“LIKE” my page at www.facebook.com/DrJsHealthcare for more information to help you on your weight loss journey!