Category Archives: weight loss

NO Weight Loss & Fit Plan



Photos provided by Grant Cochrane

Typically when we think weight loss or good health, we cut back on food, lower fat and calories. Seems like a  logical approach, no? NO! Actually, this thinking is incorrect.

NO (nutrition optimization) means using foods that have more nourishment and limiting foods that have fewer nutrients. Feeding yourself foods that are rich in nutrients and optimizing any nutrition plan will satisfy hunger and keep your body running at peak performance. No matter what your goal is, weight loss, sports performance or health, the power of nutrition can work for you. Eating healthier by substituting nutrient dense real foods that are void of additives/dyes/preservatives/sweeteners etc…for the foods you think may be saving you calories or bettering your energy levels.

Many people eat pretzels because a serving is only about 100 calories and no fat. What nutritional value does it add to your food intake?  Not much except 100 extra calories and likely the carbs will leave you hungry soon after. So you end up eating twice or three times as much food as you would have if you had eaten something a little more substantial like sliced mozzarella and tomato with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. If you chose to snack on tomato and mozzarella cheese instead of pretzels, not only do you optimize the nutritional value of a snack, you take a thoughtless moment of grabbing a handful of pretzels and create a more meaningful food experience: the aroma and taste of real food,  greater visual palatability and a higher fullness factor!

Or, maybe you are hungry and you eat a small salad (with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, broccoli and carrots and you dress it with lite Italian) because you are trying to cut calories. Although healthy, this salad is not really enough calories to sustain your appetite.  Instead, optimize the nutrition of this salad by adding turkey (protein, B6, niacin and selenium) and avocado (carotenoids, vitamin E, monounsaturated fat, fiber, potassium; and switch the dressing from the ‘lite” version that contains a myriad of additives, i.e. corn syrup, sodium benzoate, disodium EDTA) to olive oil, lemon juice and natural herbs. By optimizing the nutrition, the snack becomes more satisfying.

The substitute salad with turkey and avocado has staying power. Yes you add calories and natural fat but your body is being nourished with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and other health boosting nutrients as well. You are full. Cutting back on calories, only makes you hungry.

Sports players and athletes who are not concerned with weight may try to increase calories with milkshakes and high calorie junk food, that is not good either. Where is the nutrition, the vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and healthy fats that will help improve performance??? Sugar will rev you up and slam you back down.  Real food, nutrient dense meals and snacks will amp up fitness ability.

Optimizing nutrients to keep your body running at its best should be the focus no matter what the goal. The NO method is a compelling approach with many benefits. Try it and please share your experience with us.

NO is the only way to go!


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WTE on a Healthy Balanced Diet?


Dr. Weil’s food pyramid,,


The United State’s Department of Agriculture’s, “MY Plate”,

bg_food-pyramid3 The Atkins Food pyramid, 

On the heels of “WTF am I eating”,, I thought it would be nice to also shed some light on WTE (what to eat) on a healthy balanced diet. There are so many different nutrition philosophies out there, so much confusion about what is healthy, and, not so healthy to eat and way too much controversy on what really is the “perfect” diet for you.

Take a look at the pictures above. Different food suggestions, different ideas of how to eat healthy. Yet, they have one big similarity.  There is no mention of chips, cookies or ice cream. Sure it is ok to dabble a little bit once in a while but junkie convenience foods have crept their way into daily eating and for some of us desserts are a staple after each meal.

These three diets (shown above) are examples of  the anti-inflammatory diet, the low carb diet and the calorie controlled diet; just a few of the hundreds of thousands of different ways to feed yourself. With so many diets out there, which is best? What food plans work and how are you supposed to know WTE?

A balanced diet, or food plan, is not the same for everyone. By definition, balanced eating  would apply solely to consuming a balanced ratio of nutrients from carbs, protein and fat (1:1:1) where calories are distributed evenly across the board at about 33% of total calories for each macronutrient.  You should understand that most “healthy” plans do not emphasize this balanced equation. Also, personal situations may dictate and override a general balanced diet formula.  A healthy diet will be different for everyone based on their own special circumstance. For example:

  • Being athletic can change the nutritional playing field. Athletes may benefit from eating a balanced ratio of nutrients but the formula may need a little tweaking to account for their goals to fuel,  recover and repair from the stress of long bouts of physical activity and the additional specialized needs for any particular sport.
  • Hippocrates, 460 BC377 BC,  is noted for his famous quote “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”. This means that if you have a medical condition, such as diabetes, high triglycerides, high blood pressure, polycystic ovarian syndrome etc… a “balanced” diet may require tipping the scales more towards certain nutrients like healthy fats and away from others, like carbohydrates, to assist the body in equalizing the medical imbalance of that particular health condition.
  • If you are healthy, exercise and within your goal weight, eating an equal amount of calories from protein, fats and carbs should be the goal.

There is a lot of information out there on WTE. My best advice is to understand what your personal needs are and mold a healthy balanced nutrition plan that will work for you.  Nutrients can act in your favor or against you. It is your choice. If you need to use these general plans to jump start your healthy eating use them but long term, strive to “balance” and personalize your eating, tailored just for you.


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Ready, Set, Go! Make A Change

Changing behavior is one of the most difficult things to do in life and do not let anyone tell you otherwise. Although “change” is a simple word, the process of change is complicated, no matter what you are trying to change. If you have diabetes (or any medical condition that can improve with lifestyle changes), wish to lose weight or want a better relationship, your readiness to change will make the difference in your long term success.

Desperately wanting something does not get you to “ready”. Trying your best or even going through the motions will not change behavior. In order to get on the right track to reach your goals, you must get “ready” to change your behavior.

READY” is defined as, “completely prepared” or “in condition for immediate action”. Therefore one of the best ways to ensure you will achieve your health goals is to get ready.

Determine what your goals are and prepare for action. Make weekly appointments with yourself. Set a date and time, put it on the calendar or you may never get the time you need to take care of yourself. This is all about Y-O-U! So, you will be the best person to determine what your goals are. No one else can tell you how to prioritize your life. You do not have to do this alone you can enlist a friend, family member or healthcare expert to help. I think it’s best to get as many people who are willing to support you on board as possible. Be honest with yourself; make sure those who support you provide unconditional help.

Be prepared to deal with those who are not supportive in any way necessary.


List your goals.

List specific actions that must be made.

Describe how you will execute your plan.

List behaviors that will contribute to success.

Think about the barriers you will have to overcome and plan on how to change your behavior to achieve victory.

Learn from mistakes and plan for success the next time you experience a pitfall.

Accept the fact that changing behavior is not easy and you will experience setbacks.

Ask yourself:

How will I learn new behaviors and let go of poor behaviors?
How can I anticipate a behavior relapse?
How can I maintain motivation?
What are the benefits?
What are the drawbacks of my changes?


No one else can do this for you but you. Denial and avoidance will get you nowhere. Take the bull by the horns and GO for a healthy lifestyle, improve a diagnosis or relationship. It will likely be an opportunity for improved quality of life and good health not only for you but everyone around you.

There is no quick fix in life. Get ready, get set and go for it! No matter what it is, you can make a change for the better by taking these steps and exchanging poor behaviors for positive actions. It may take time but it will be well worth your efforts.




Posted by on March 3, 2014 in behavior, weight loss, wellness


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New Years Resolution Success 2014


I am re-posting this blog for all of you who have made a New Years’ Resolution to lose weight.

Anyone who has lost weight and kept it off will tell you that a one shot promise is not going to get you to your goal. Prioritizing healthy eating and using specific behavior goals will help. So this is worth the repeat as it is an example of how to stay on top of your New Years’ Resolution.

If you made a vow to yourself on December 31st , or any other day, keep it going throughout the year. Instead of a once a year pledge, make a real commitment. Set an alarm, mark your calendar for the end of each month and re-visit your goal to determine if the goal is realistic. If you set a general goal, it is likely you will join 95% of those people whose “diet” fail, Set a practical plan, adjust it as needed and if you stick with it, you will succeed.

Do you want to lose weight or just be healthier this year? You want to succeed? The goal and behavior strategies you set must be front and center in your mind on a daily basis, not an off the cuff yearly pledge.  What is your goal? How will you accomplish it?

For example, your goal might be: I will lose 2 pounds a week.

How are you going to achieve this goal? Specific behavior strategies that you choose to assist you with daily challenges.


1. Switch my low nutrient snacks for real foods that nourish (i.e. switch 100 calorie snacks pack for celery with peanut butter).

2. I will track my foods for accountability (use an app to track daily food).

3. I will not deprive myself when I’m hungry. I will eat veggies instead of chips.

Allow yourself three and a half weeks to determine if the set goal is realistic or you need to change it so that it is attainable.

Renew your vow if your are successful, it’s working for you. Add a second goal with 3 new strategies for detailed actions in February. Do this each month.

If you have not achieved your goal in 3 weeks, re-do your vow so that  it is more attainable.

Example of  a resolution “re-do”:

I will lose one-two pounds each week


1. I will only eat only 1 evening snack each day.

2. I will track my foods for accountability (not all strategies will have to change).

3. I will identify real hunger vs. eating when bored.

Just because your initial attempt at weight loss or better health does not work, it does not mean that within six months you throw in the towel. There is more than one way to get things done. It may take a little time to find your comfort zone. But, you will be on track to accomplishing your goals.

At the end of each month, set a time when you check-in, evaluate your progress, or lack of progress. Learn to accommodate your lifestyle, your food preferences and any other hiccup that might interfere with your goal in order to identify what works for you. When you individualize your own plan, you will beat the odds and find a lifetime of success.

So at the end of the month, ask yourself, how did my plan go in January? Which strategies worked? What changes will need to be made to next month’s plan?

If you analyze your progress consistently, make accommodations as needed and dedicate yourself to your plans, you will obtain your goal for your New Years’ Resolution. Go ahead try it!



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Seven TKO Strategies For Weight Loss

Cover of "Rocky III"

Cover of Rocky III

Get “the eye of the tiger” for the holidays.  Focus and win the war on weight loss. Five pounds or five hundred pounds, it does not matter. Battling the bulge (big or small) is not easy.

1. Create your own “Eat-To-Win” (ETW) strategies.  Forget about what works for everyone else. What works for you? What does NOT work for you? Create the plan and follow your own ETW rules.

2. Ditch the all-or-nothing mindset. Most people over indulge at one time or another. It is the “nothing” mindset that gets you nowhere. Putting off your diet today to restart tomorrow  I ate that cake, I’ll start my diet again tomorrow and then you put off tomorrow what you can do today.

3.. Avoid trigger foods, that may start an avalanche of eating. Trigger foods typically are high in calories, carbohydrates and unhealthy fats. If the unthinkable happens, eating protein and veggies may help get your appetite back in control. By eating foods that are nutrient dense and cutting off the sugar supply, eating and cravings can be controlled.

4. Schedule an enjoyable activity, you may want to make a list of what, when and how you will get consistent activity into your day. Moving your body will make you feel better physically and mentally.

5. Journal: Write down your feelings about your indulgence. Was it worth it? Were you stressed because you were not following your plan? Did it soothe you? Then plan how you might do things differently for the next time. If you followed your plan, make a note at how it felt to do the right thing, track the outcome. Did you lose instead of a gain a pound? Keep your journal in an easy to reach place for quick access in case of an emergency.

6. Adopt a positive and supportive relationship with yourself, and most of all,  be true to you. Negativity not allowed. Think about the childhood tale of “The Little Engine That Could“, In the story, a large train must be hauled over a mountain. The little red engine, agrees to try. It then succeeds in pulling the large immobile train over the mountain while repeating: “I-think-I-can”.

7. Think Rocky III, Eye of the Tiger Focus, commitment, drive and above all fortitude is needed to give you the mental strength to be courageous enough to keep trying until you achieve your goal. It is not common to lose weight and maintain that success on the first try.

Allow trial and error (or even defeat, i.e. weight gain)  to guide you not beat you. It can be used to support your weight loss strategy and success.  

Earn your weight loss TKO. Use one or all of these strategies now, do not wait until after the holiday season. Being mindful of your surroundings, changing behavior, slip ups are all part of the process. The process may take longer than expected but let nothing get in your way of your ultimate success.

If you can gear up and get a few good habits under your belt during the most difficult time of the year to take on anything just think of what you can do once the holidays pass!

Make your holidays REALLY joyful, give yourself the life changing weight loss gift you deserve.


Posted by on December 9, 2013 in holiday, weight loss


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Hormonal Havoc Harnesses Metabolic Overdrive (Part 2)


body-trade-in (Photo credit: cheerfulmonk)

Do not trade in your body for a newer model, until you have tried these remedies for hormonal havoc and Metabolic Overdrive (MO).

Last week Part 1 of Hormonal Havoc Harnesses MO focused on two of the three major sex hormones that need to be aligned to achieve good health and weight loss, estrogen and testosterone,

Progesterone is the third and equally  important hormone as testosterone and estrogen. It teams up with cholesterol to produce the sex hormones, cortisol and DHEA. It is the primary hormone effecting menstruation, fertility and vaginal dryness for women and has been linked to prostate health for men. You men may be interested in this,

What are normal progesterone levels?

You can look ‘em up here,

Causes of Low Progesterone (Low P)

Symptoms of Low P

As mentioned in last week’s blog, hormone levels can start to decline  as early as age 35. Over a 15 year time frame, estrogen levels can drop by 35% while progesterone levels dip by 75%. Low progesterone is tied to a low toleration to stress, the aging process (including wrinkles, thinning skin and hair loss), aches and pains, osteoporosis, fibroids, high blood pressure and stroke. Higher estrogen (for men and women) typically lowers progesterone too.

Women experience more symptoms than men because progesterone plays a bigger role in their health but either gender experiences devastating side effects.




Hot Flashes & Night sweats

Man Boobs

Decreased Libido



Cravings/Weight Gain


Enlarged Prostate

Bone Loss


Heart Disease

Muscle Loss

Hair loss or excess body/facial hair

Male Pattern Baldness

Poor Sleep

Poor Concentration/Memory Loss

Low thyroid


Heavy painful or Irregular Periods

Breast  Tenderness

Mood Swings

Anxiety & Depression

polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)

If you found many of the hormone disadvantage questions (see part 1, the link is above) similar to the thyroid questions,, there’s a good reason for that. These conditions generally overlap. Most people who have one condition also have the other. If you answered yes to two or more questions or experience any of the symptoms above, consider making an appointment with your physician to test progesterone and all the hormones that “intermingle”, DHEA, cortisol, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone and melatonin.

If you have a normal test result but answered yes to any of the starred questions in the quiz, you may be developing a hormone disadvantage that is not yet extreme enough to be detected by medical tests. If you make no changes to your lifestyle, it may eventually show up.

If despite a normal test result you suspect you may have a hormone disadvantage, follow Level 1 eating but do not use the specific hormone disadvantage supplements. These supplements are effective when treating a problem, but they do pose some risks. Don’t take them unless you are definitely sure you need them. With a doctors approval and a confirmed hormone disadvantage, use the supplements described in Chapter 9. You may also want to speak with your doctor and consider a natural “USP progesterone” cream containing 400-500 mg of progesterone per ounce. Women need about a quarter and men need about an eighth of a teaspoon to be applied to the chest, abdomen, inner arms or inner thighs.

Weight loss may not come as easy as someone who does not have a hormone disadvantage, but you will see results and you can meet your goals.

Insulin is last but certainly not least on the MO list to be discussed next week. Until then…


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Hormonal Havoc Harnesses Metabolic Overdrive (Part1)

We all know that the fountain of youth does not exist but if you feel the need to turn back the hands of time consider balancing sex hormones. Hormone levels begin to change by age 30-35.

As each of these hormones reach “out-of-whack” status, additional hormones like insulin and cortisol are negatively affected compounding metabolic overdrive (MO) for weight and health.

Hormonal overdrive or MO, through the involvement of insulin and cortisol, is linked with metabolic disorders: obesity, diabetes,  metabolic syndrome (in normal weight people too) and heart disease.

Ask yourself some of these general questions if you think hormones are at the root of your (MO).

1. Are you tired during the day?

2. Do you have a low sex drive/libido (lower than in the past or than what you’d like)?

3. Do you have difficulty sleeping (it takes you longer than 30 minutes to fall asleep, and you wake more than once at night)?

4. Have you gained weight, despite following a weight loss plan or trying to reduce calories or portions?

5. Are you depressed?

Women only:

1. Is your hair thinning?

2. Do you have facial hair?

3. Do you retain water?

4. Do you skip periods, have periods more frequently than once a month, or menstruate irregularly, even though you are not peri-menopausal or post-menopausal?

5. Do you bleed heavily during your periods (soaking through a tampon or pad within an hour)?

6. Do you feel irritable, bloated, or fatigued in the days leading up to your period?

7. Do you have hot f lashes or night sweats, even though you are not peri-menopausal?

Men only:

1. Are you developing breasts?

2. Do you have impotence or erectile dysfunction?

3. Have you been diagnosed with a low sperm count?

If you have answered yes to two or more questions, your hormones may be out of balance and need adjusting.

The goal is to balance testosterone, progesterone and estrogen for both men and women.

 High Estrogen  

When in excess, estrogen promotes fat gain, and the enlarged fat tissue produces more estrogen within its cells, which then promotes more fat gain, and so on.

Specific factors contributing to this include:

  • Age
  • Medications, ask your doctor or pharmacist about medicine that may increase estrogen, such as the pill, steroids, antifungals, antibiotics etc…
  • Drugs like cocaine and marijuana
  • Weight, fat cells store and secrete estrogen, the heavier you are the greater risk for higher levels of estrogen
  • hormone disrupting Chemicals and xenoestrogens,,  “cleaning products, air fresheners, hair dyes, cosmetics, and sunscreens. Many observations suggesting that endocrine disruptors do contribute to cancer, diabetes, obesity, the metabolic syndrome, and infertility”. Others that top the list are  BPA stands for bisphenol A), pesticides, and even hormone laden meats and foods.
  • Certain diseases effecting the liver, thyroid, adrenal glands or kidney

Men may have symptoms including: man boobs, abdominal obesity,  loss of lean body mass and lack of energy. There are more symptoms listed here,

Women gain weight all over; the stomach, arms, hips and thighs and the butt, more details here,

Low T (Low Testosterone)

Low T can cause changes in weight by converting lean body mass into fat. It can also lower libido and cause brain fog, anxiety and fatigue. For women, low T also contributes to hot flashes and vaginal dryness fatigue. When estrogen is high, there is a good chance testosterone is low.

Medications that may lower T include antidepressants, statins, blood pressure pills and many more, check  this out,

It is possible to raise testosterone naturally, here is one of my favorite articles on the topic,

This is not the whole story, there is another important sex hormone, progesterone. Next week I will add progesterone to the mix and wrap it all up so you can take steps to bring hormone levels back in good working order.

Related stories:


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The Thyroid Tie-In To Metabolic Overdrive

English: Scheme of the thyroid gland. 한국어: 갑상선 개요도

English: Scheme of the thyroid gland. 한국어: 갑상선 개요도 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The thyroid, is a butterfly-shaped gland found in the neck that releases thyroid hormones triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). These hormones are tied to many body functions, such as mood,  metabolism of vitamins, carbs, proteins and fats, body temperature, energy levels, heart rate, bone growth and the body’s  use of the hormones produced by the adrenal glands.

Because the thyroid is involved in so many body functions, if it is off by even a little you may feel one or more of the following symptoms: depression or anxiety,  difficulty in maintaining, losing or gaining weight, feeling cold, a general lack of energy, thinning hair, brittle nails, insomnia, high cholesterol,  constipation, low sex drive and much, much more.

A “short-circuit” in the thyroid can be caused by: an autoimmune “attack”, stress, nutritional inadequacy (low iodine or selenium), pregnancy or environmental chemicals such as PCBs, phthalates, bisphenol A, brominated flame retardants and perfluorinated chemicals;

What are the symptoms of a “short-circuit” in the thyroid gland?                                                  

Answer each of the following questions with a yes or no.

1. Do you suffer from cold hands and feet, even when you are in a heated room?

2. Do you feel depressed, lethargic, unmotivated, or hopeless?

3. Do you suffer from constipation?

4. Do your nails break easily?

5. Do you have a low sex drive/libido (lower than in the past or than what you’d like)?

6. Do you have difficulty sleeping (it takes you longer than 30 minutes to fall asleep and you wake more than once at night)?

7. Do you feel tired during the day?

8. Have you recently gained weight, even though you were not overeating?

9. Have the hairs along the outer one-third of your eyebrows thinned or fallen out?

10. Do you suffer from muscle aches or joint pain, despite doing nothing more rigorous than your daily activities?

11. Is your temperature below 98.5°F when you first wake up?

12. Is your total cholesterol above 200 or your LDL cholesterol above 130?

 For Women Only:

1. Even though you are not perimenopausal or postmenopausal, do you skip periods, have periods more frequently than once a month, or menstruate irregularly?

2. Is your hair thinning?

If you answered yes to two or more questions, consider making an appointment with your physician for a thyroid test. If you have a normal test result but answered yes to any of the starred questions, you may have a thyroid issue that is too mild to be diagnosed by a medical test.

The American College of Clinical Endocrinologists estimates that 1 in 10 Americans have an under active thyroid and that half remain undiagnosed. Thyroid conditions typically affect women over 35 but men are not immune.

The thyroid, when not performing well, can be detrimental to the adrenal glands (both can also negatively affect  blood sugar); which can create a domino effect sending metabolic overdrive into full throttle.  This domino effect makes health extremely difficult to manage because instead of just one body system malfunctioning you now have 2 or more systems “out of whack”.  Each body function (insulin, cortisol, thyroid, yeast, sex hormones), although independent, are intertwined.

If MO has affected your thyroid, bring it back to health using “The Stubborn Fat Fix”, Level 2 is the eating plan to use and take the supplements outlined for the thyroid disadvantage in Chapter 9. You may not lose weight as quickly as someone who does not have a thyroid disadvantage, but you will see results and you can meet your goals.

What is candida and how does it put you in metabolic overdrive? Find out next week!


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The Cortisol Connection to Metabolic Overdrive (MO)

The adrenal glands sit atop the kidneys.

The adrenal glands sit atop the kidneys. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last week I defined metabolic overdrive (MO),, and listed 5 body organs or systems that are effected: the gut, sex hormones, thyroid, pancreas and adrenal gland. Each week I will tackle a different system to give you a better understanding of what happens when you fall victim to MO. I’ll start with the adrenals.

The adrenal glands are triangular and sit on top of your kidneys. They make stress hormones (cortisol and adrenaline) and sex hormones (testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone). Daily stress (too little sleep, overworking yourself, or exercising too much)  triggers your adrenals to overproduce the hormone cortisol. Eventually the adrenals become fatigued and the ability to make cortisol is lost. As the adrenals lose the ability to overproduce cortisol, MO kicks in.  When cortisol production falls, intense cardio can initiate the breakdown of protein stores leading to loss of muscle mass and increased fat mass. This is why exercise may not always be good for weight loss. Poor adrenal function also lowers levels of testosterone in men, progesterone in women, and DHEA in both sexes. This leads to weight gain, fatigue, low sex drive, insomnia, infertility (in women), and emotional instability (moodiness).

What are the symptoms of adrenal fatigue? Answer each of the following questions with a yes or no.

Do you have trouble slowing down at night?

Does it take longer than 30 minutes for you to fall asleep?

Do you frequently wake at night and find yourself unable to get back to sleep?

Do you watch TV or use a computer shortly before bed?

Do you eat while working, watching TV, or sitting at the computer?

Do you have trouble getting out of bed in the morning because you do not feel rested?

Do you keep yourself going during the day by drinking or taking caffeine?

If you answered yes to one or more questions, consider talking to your doctor about testing your cortisol levels. High cortisol levels indicate that your stress response is turned “on” all day long. Low cortisol indicates that your adrenals have burned out. In either case, follow the suggestions in The Stubborn Fat Fix, Use the Level 2 eating plan, take the supplements described in chapter 9, and pay particular attention to the stress reduction advice in chapter 10. Also, it’s particularly important for you to avoid cardiovascular exercise during the first month of your weight loss plan.

If MO has affected the adrenal glands for awhile there may be more damage, MO may be infiltrating more than just the adrenals, as one body system starts to fatigue, the others (gut, sex hormones, thyroid, pancreas or any other) compensate creating a domino effect. There can be more than one reason your body is in a rut making the cure even more difficult but not impossible.

Maybe you have not heard of metabolic overdrive but it is real and it can be devastating. When you feel depressed or tried, when you cannot achieve your weight goals and are trying hard, when your adrenals are pumping out cortisol and adrenaline and hormones are out of whack, your body is screaming for help. It is your body’s way of trying to communicate with you. Learn to listen, you will be rewarded with weight loss success, good health, more energy than you ever thought possible.

Next week I will dive into thyroid and MO.


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What is Metabolic Overdrive?


Health (Photo credit: 401(K) 2013)

When health markers are not within the normal range, it is your body’s way of communicating. It is begging for your attention. Your heart, pancreas, thyroid and other organs cannot speak to you directly but they can send you signals that should grab your attention.    

How Healthy is Your Metabolism?

Do you feel tired all the time?

Do you wake frequently at night?

Do you feel hungry between meals, even if you’ve just eaten?

Do you crave candy, soda, coffee or any stimulant especially in the mid afternoon?

If you answered yes to at least one of these questions, you have some of the classic symptoms of a metabolic disadvantage. An underlying medical condition is likely blocking your every attempt to lose weight, improve energy levels or health.


Metabolic overdrive (MO)  is the result of environmental stress and its impact on revving up metabolism.  There are many different ways this happens. MO occurs: when you are stressed, after tossing  back a triple shot espresso, with excess exercise, with eating from a toxic food supply containing refined/processed foods or with a lack of sleep. Being exposed to one or more of these metabolic stresses for long periods of time causes burn out to organs that work to achieve balance by counteracting these metabolic stressors. Most people assume the goal is to speed up their metabolism.  Yet, this is not true and can make MO worse.

Stress and lack of sleep, for example, cause the adrenal glands to overproduce the stress hormone cortisol and keep levels elevated. Cortisol is released as part of the fight or flight response to a perceived threat to survival. When cortisol increases, so does blood glucose, in order to provide your muscles with fuel to fight or flee. The problem is that your muscle cells don’t need the glucose when you are responding to emotional stress or lack of sleep, so the hormone insulin increases to shuttle the excess glucose into your fat cells—usually the ones in your abdomen. In an overspent state, insulin does this very efficiently. Too much insulin causes blood glucose to drop too quickly. You crave the one thing that can quickly raise blood glucose: sugar. If you turn to sugar – as most people under stress do–glucose rises, insulin rises, glucose falls. You’re hungry again. You’re like a gambler with a huge wad of cash in your pocket. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, but you generally lose more than you win, and the cash starts to dwindle.

Overdrive can also result from eating a lot of sugar, HFCS, and refined foods. In this case, blood sugar rapidly rises and falls, and so does insulin. To compensate for the volatility of rapid rises and falls in sugar and hormones, the metabolism runs fast. In fact, many people  who have hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) are fairly slender. It’s not until they progress to the “metabolic resistance stage” that they start to gain weight.

MO can impact all of these metabolic systems: thyroid, adrenal, pancreas, sex hormones and  the gut. Find out how next week.


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