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Here you will find great tips for healthy living, nutritional advice, and the latest news on health studies and research.

Tag Archives: obesity

Sugar, Kids & Health

I hope you are enjoying the World Series! Now that Halloween is over and sugary treats are everywhere, did you know sugar has the same effect on the liver as alcohol?  Sugar (especially fructose) is metabolized in the liver just as alcohol is and that is why kids are getting the diseases of alcohol such as type 2 diabetes and fatty liver disease.  “These are diseases that were unheard-of in children prior to 1980” according to doctors.  “Sugar doesn’t cause disease because of its calories. Sugar causes disease because it’s sugar.”  Even thin people get metabolic diseases like type 2 diabetes. Sugar is its own risk factor apart from calories or obesity.  Even adolescents are getting metabolic syndrome more often including increased blood pressure, excess fat around the waist , diabetes and increased risk of heart disease.  The key is distinguishing good sugar from bad and when it comes to kids, there must be a strategy.  More on this on Friday!

Obesity, Health & Disease

If you love to eat, as I do, then you may want to consider the following information from the CDC relative to American weight gain.  We are now as fat a country as ever.  Forty one percent of women and thirty five percent of men are obese compared to a decade ago.  That is up 4% for women and 1% for men.  Teen obesity is at 21% which is up from 17%.  The good news is that obesity rates for kids ages 2-5 have declined to 9% from 14% and kids 6-11 have remained about the same. These stats are the latest from 2014 but it is definitely not good news.  It is not the fact that as a society we are getting fatter, it is all the health ramifications that go along with that including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, metabolic disease, just to name a few.  We can be heavy but healthy, however it does take effort, education, persistence, informed food choices and timely but consistent exercise.  This is an epidemic and as a society it must be addressed now, as we are failing in our attempts to help our selves and educate our future generations to the ramifications of the choices we make with our foods.  The first step is to hold ourselves accountable, for the health of our nation.

Weight Loss & Noise

Did you know if it is loud when you eat, you may consume more calories than if it was quieter?  A study of 71 people, divide into two groups, had people listen to white noise through a headphone while they ate pretzels.  The group listening to soft noise ate roughly 50% fewer pretzels than those who listened to louder noise.  The researchers speculated that hearing yourself eat may serve as a “consumption monitoring cue”.  The bottom line here is that keep it quiet as possible while you eat, and your body will thank you for it!!

Ectopic Fat, Cardiovascular Risk

Fat Distribution

Ectopic fat is important! Have you noticed a little more chub around your waist lately? Did you know that one risk factor relative to health is exactly where this lipid  is stored on the body? Growing evidence associates the location of fat in the body, to increased risk of disease. This risk is not so much associated with how much fat we carry but where we carry it. If we carry this lipid tissue along our waist, liver, heart, pancreas or muscle, we are generally more at risk for disease. Tell tale signs include an apple-shaped fat distribution pattern, primarily in the abdomen, chest and shoulders. Even people with the same BMI measures can have different risk factors based upon where fat is located. Unfortunately ectopic fat can be present even if one is not clinically obese or even overweight. On the flip side of this coin, the presence of obesity does not necessarily mean there is ectopic fat present.

Risks

Since these lipids are more dangerous to health ( cardiovascular issues) when it is located along our waist and internal organs, there must be some risk factors. There are risk factors that we can control and some we cannot.  Controllable risk factors include, stress, sleep, activity levels and smoking. Other controllable risk factors include calorie intake higher than calorie burn, the standard western diet, night eating and high fructose corn syrup. Demographics include age, ethnicity, gender and genetics, all which are uncontrollable.

Physical and Lab Measures

There are some physical and lab evaluations that are associated with ectopic fat than can provide important details if one wishes to pursue them.  Though finding out your BMI is helpful, a better way is to get a Bio impedance analysis which uses electrical measurements to provide measurements of lean tissue, fat tissue, and fluid distribution. There are also several biochemical assessments such as salivary cortisol, C-reactive protein, ESR, hemoglobin A1c, fasting glucose and insulin as well as fructosamine and C-peptide.

All this information is fine, except what are the solutions?  Solutions include diet, exercise, lifestyle and nutrition via nutraceuticals.  I will discuss this in detail next time!

Keep Moving, Get Thinner

As a follow-up to a few days ago, my “reasons to keep moving” message, I found some more interesting facts.  Some school kids can spend at least 65 to 70% of their waking hours sitting and we all know how bad that is.  Sitting burns about 100 calories per hour while standing burns about 30 calories more per hour than sitting.   Thus 2 hours sitting burns 200 calories while standing burns 260 calories etc. A study in Texas found that those first graders with standing desks burned 17% more calories than those who sat. For those students who were overweight, the effects were more dramatic with those students burning 32% more calories. Take home point, move it and lose it !!

Movement vs Sitting

Reasons to keep on the move. Many studies have shown that the amount of time we sit during the day can have a significant (negative) impact on our health.  But, do you know how much you should stand each day to improve your health? A recent study found that an extra 2 hours a day standing instead of sitting was linked to improved blood sugar levels, lower blood fat (triglycerides) levels and improvement with cholesterol levels. An extra 2 hours of moving was also linked to lower body mass and waist circumference.  Find spots in your busy day to stand and move, be more active and less sedentary.  It is a matter of health!

America is fat and getting worse

Enjoy summer everyone! Last night I had the opportunity to read some statistics about American health that frightened me. Researchers have studied approximately 15,000 adults 25 and older and found that 40% of men are overweight and 35% are obese. Women, on average, are 30% overweight and 37% obese. The yearly medical costs of this epidemic is approximately $147 billion based upon the last data in 2008. At this point, the one thing we cannot deny is that we are leaving a terrible health legacy for our children that will take a decades and decades to undo, if at all possible. As adults, we must lead by example and begin to take our health back, our future generations deserve better. I do not know the answer to this dilemma, as it is very complicated and multi-factorial, however the health care costs are unsustainable and the human cost is more scary than ever.

Kids, Sugary Drinks, And Obesity

We all know by now that sugary drinks are not the greatest healthy beverages to consume. A very recent study showed that preschoolers who consumed sugary drinks were more likely to gain excess weight and run the risk of being obese compared to non-drinkers. Also the research found that less milk was consumed by those kids who drank more sugared beverages. Please be vigilant about your child’s sugary drink consumption, as well as your own. It is a life and health issue!

Body Transition

Obesity is an epidemic in the United States and statistics prove it. However losing weight is a very personal issue. BodyTransition is a physician monitored, high performance, in house, weight loss and management program. I initially developed this program for my patients who cannot seem to lose weight on their own. I use amino acid supplemental therapy to help my patients lose weight safely and effectively. My program was designed from a model based upon Dr. Marty Hinz’s work with amino acid therapy and bariatric patients. Dr. Hinz (founder of NeuroResearch in Duluth, Mn.) is at the forefront of research for amino acid therapy relative to disease. Dr. Hinz is the physician that educated me in the use of amino acids for neurotransmitter dysfunction. I have been utilizing them for various disorders since 2003.

Amino acids in weight loss are designed to suppress the appetite which allows one to reduce caloric intake comfortably. In other words, you can eat less food without feeling hungry. The only way to lose weight is to eat less, exercise more or both. Many who are obese have neurotransmitter levels that are so low they cannot shut off the sensation of hunger, thus they eat constantly or excessively. Amino acids increase the levels of neurotransmitters into therapeutic ranges so a person is able to actually suppress the pangs of hunger. Serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine and nor-epinephrine are the major neurotransmitters that we try to modulate. A person could never eat enough food to increase the neurotransmitters to required levels in the body, that is why it is important to supplement them.

My program is simple, when you come in for your first visit, together we determine how many calories you must consume on a daily basis, to lose a specific amount of weight, in a specific amount of time. That number then becomes your calorie prescription, meaning that is the number of calories (or less) you must eat on a daily basis to lose weight and reach your goals. You take your amino acids daily as recommended, you keep a diet log of all the food you consume, you keep track of the calories for all food eaten in the diet log and you come in for a weigh-in once a week.

Most people eat 500-600 calories a day more than they think and this alone can add one pound of fat to your body in a week (3500 calories = 1 pound fat). Studies show that those that track their eating and caloric intake do much better losing weight.

Every weight loss patient must bring their diet log to each weigh-in. The purpose of the diet log is two-fold. First and foremost it allows us to see what you eat, when you eat and how much you eat. Second, after two weeks of reviewing your diet log, we can tweak your diet to help you eat healthier and time foods during the day when they might be more beneficial in controlling hunger and blood sugar swings.

I will teach you to count calories if you do not understand how to do so. I will teach you to read food labels that allow you to understand what is in the foods you eat and how to determine serving and portion sizes. You will learn when to eat, what to eat and not just what not to eat. There are many other aspects of this program that will help you lose weight and for those very difficult cases, I use the help of a medical hypnotherapist, trained in medical cases, who can help you with other issues that prevent you from achieving success.

If you wish to know more about amino acid therapy, call my office at 630-351-4700

BodyTransition (weight loss/management with amino acid therapy)

Obesity is an epidemic in the United States and statistics prove it. However, losing weight is a very personal issue. BodyTransition is a physician monitored, high performance, in house, weight loss and management program. I initially developed this program for my patients who cannot seem to lose weight on their own. I use amino acid supplemental therapy to help my patients lose weight safely and effectively. My program was designed from a model based upon Dr. Marty Hinz’s work with amino acid therapy and bariatric patients. Dr. Hinz (founder of NeuroResearch in Duluth, Mn.) is at the forefront of research for amino acid therapy relative to disease. Dr. Hinz is the physician that educated me in the use of amino acids for neurotransmitter dysfunction. I have been utilizing them for various disorders since 2003.

Amino acids in weight loss are designed to suppress the appetite which allows one to reduce caloric intake comfortably. In other words, you can eat less food without feeling hungry. The only way to lose weight is to eat less, exercise more, or both. Many who are obese have neurotransmitter levels that are so low they cannot shut off the sensation of hunger, thus they eat constantly or excessively. Amino acids increase the levels of neurotransmitters into therapeutic ranges so a person is able to actually suppress the pangs of hunger. Serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine, and nor-epinephrine are the major neurotransmitters that we try to modulate. A person could never eat enough food to increase the neurotransmitters to required levels in the body, that is why it is important to supplement them.

My program is simple, when you come in for your first visit, together we determine how many calories you must consume on a daily basis, to lose a specific amount of weight, in a specific amount of time. That number then becomes your calorie prescription, meaning that is the number of calories (or less) you must eat on a daily basis to lose weight and reach your goals. You take your amino acids daily as recommended, you keep a diet log of all the food you consume, you keep track of the calories for all food eaten in the diet log and you come in for a weigh-in once a week.

Most people eat 500-600 calories a day more than they think and this alone can add one pound of fat to your body in a week (3500 calories = 1 pound fat). Studies show that those that track their eating and caloric intake do much better losing weight.

Every weight loss patient must bring their diet log to each weigh-in. The purpose of the diet log is two-fold. First and foremost it allows us to see what you eat, when you eat and how much you eat. Second, after two weeks of reviewing your diet log, we can tweak your diet to help you eat healthier and time foods during the day when they might be more beneficial in controlling hunger and blood sugar swings.

I will teach you to count calories if you do not understand how to do so. I will teach you to read food labels that allow you to understand what is in the foods you eat and how to determine serving and portion sizes. You will learn when to eat, what to eat, and what not to eat. There are many other aspects of this program that will help you lose weight and for those very difficult cases, I use the help of a medical hypnotherapist, trained in medical cases, who can help you with other issues that prevent you from achieving success.

If you wish to know more about amino acid therapy, please call my office at (630) 351-4700.