Dietary changes and supplements that will help combat obesity.

BY TOM FISHER, RN, BA
The prevalence of obesity has increased during the past few decades. Obesity is associated with an increased risk for a wide range of health challenges, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, gallbladder disease, sleep apnea, asthma, osteoarthritis and several types of cancer. Medications are available to decrease appetite, interfere with macronutrient absorption, or increase energy expenditure. However, the long-term success rate of most weight-loss programs is very low. While many people lose weight initially, they typically regain most or all of the lost weight within five years.

WHAT MAKES YOU GAIN WEIGHT?

PLASTICS

Exposure to plastics by leaching can have an adverse reaction to our hormones because they are endocrine disrupters. Exposure to low doses of bisphenol A (BPA) is reported to cause obesity in experimental animals. BPA leaches from food and beverage containers under normal conditions and has been found in indoor air. It is possible that the rising obesity rate in the United States is due, in part, to widespread exposure to BPA and other endocrine-disrupting chemicals.

CONSUMING SUGAR

Among many dietary factors of weight gain is increased use of sugars such as sucrose, fructose, and glucose, which are carbohydrates that substantially increase caloric intake. In addition, consuming large amounts of sugar may lead to addictive eating by two different mechanisms. First, eating sugar can cause low blood sugar in susceptible individuals, with each blood sugar drop triggering a desire to ingest more sugar or other carbohydrates. Second, sugar-induced addictive eating may be mediated by the endogenous opioid system. Fructose is preferentially metabolized to lipids, and animal studies suggest that fructose consumption may promote the development of abdominal obesity.

FOOD ALLERGIES

Allergist T.G. Randolph report- ed in 1947 that a hidden food allergy is a common cause of obesity. He noted that patients are frequently, and often unknowingly, addicted to the same foods to which they are allergic. Patients with a food allergy may fell better immedi- ately after eating an allergenic food, but will feel progressively worse after about two hours.

The most common allergens (corn, wheat and milk) are high in calories. Eating those foods frequently or in large quantities can cause obesity. Avoiding hidden allergens often results in diuresis, disappearance of edema, loss of food cravings, cessation of excessive appetite, and a rapid initial decrease in weight followed by more gradu- al but progressive weight loss.

WHAT HELPS YOU LOSE WEIGHT?

HIGH-FIBER DIET

Consuming fiber may help prevent or reverse obesity by three different mechanisms. First, high-fiber foods such as bean sprouts tend to have low caloric density. Second, such foods require additional chewing, which slows the rate at which a person eats. Third, fiber holds water and thereby promotes a feeling of fullness.

FEWER TRANS FATTY ACIDS

Animals that ate trans fatty acids had a significantly greater increase in mean body weight, a significantly higher ratio of internal fat to external fat, and significantly higher insulin levels after the meal. These findings suggest that consuming trans fatty acids may contribute to obesity, even without excessive caloric intake, possibly by inducing insulin resistance. Trans fats are found in many foods such as fried chicken, doughnuts, cookies, pastries, and crackers.

NATURAL SUPPLEMENTS

Supplements that promote weight loss include Eidon magnesium, green tea extract, and Lifegive Meltaway Advanced. Key nutrients such as magnesium may provide exciting gene-altering effects by upregulating 24 genes that reduce total fat storage and down-regulating 36 other genes that promote weight gain.

Mice on a high-fat diet that consumed decaffeinated green tea extract and exercised regularly experienced sharp reductions in final body weight and significant improvements in health. Researchers at Penn State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences believe humans will achieve similar results. With Lifegive Meltaway Advanced, the enzyme lipase assists the digestive and eliminative systems of unwanted lipids. Innoslim (a Hippocrates blend) in Meltaway Advanced works in the human body by regulating glucose, fat cells and muscle cells. It also helps reduce glucose absorption in the gastrointestinal tract and increases combustion in fat cells, and glycogen synthesis in the muscle cells.

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