Advice Column, Health, Parenting

The Slim Down On Dieting

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Winter has come and gone and perhaps, like most people, you gained a few extra kilos over the past few months? Now all those layers of clothing must be shed and so must the extra weight. So what diet will it be this time?The fact of the matter is this:  no matter which diet one chooses to follow, it will fail 98% of the time.

Why diets don’t work

The reason diets don’t work, no matter which one you contemplate, stems from the fact that diets are a short-term solution to a long-term problem. “Going on a diet” implies that sometime in the future you will be going off that diet. If the diet relies on willpower you will generally not do very well. And when you fail it is not uncommon to put yourself down, have self-esteem plummeting and your weight rising.Diets are also doomed to fail if they eliminate, or dramatically limit, a major macronutrient like carbohydrates or fats. Such diets are out of balance, and, sooner or later, our bodies begin craving the nutrients they have been denied. So what is the answer to this obesity epidemic that will allow us not only to lose weight but to lose it permanently?

Insulin resistance

The most significant reason diets fail is because they do not address the major underlying cause of weight gain, which is insulin resistance. What most people call cravings or emotional eating is really a carbohydrate addiction and the result of spiking blood sugar by eating high glycemic carbohydrates. These are foods that spike our blood sugar faster than spooning sugar on to our tongues. High-glycemic carbohydrates include common foods such as bread, cereals, chips, crackers, pretzels, potatoes, rice cakes, white rice, sugar and white flour. Eating these foods rapidly raises and over stimulates the release of insulin. Insulin’s primary job is to transport blood sugar into the cell where it is utilized to create energy, or to be stored as fat or glycogen. This process drives the blood sugar level back down just as fast as it went up; however, it generally drops back into a low blood sugar range or hypoglycemic range resulting in uncontrollable hunger, usually craving another high-glycemic meal or snack. The vicious cycle starts all over again leading to overeating and over time our cells become insulin resistant and just cannot utilize all the calories from our meals and snacks. Therefore, many calories are diverted to the fat cells of the abdomen where they are stored as fat.

Reset your body

With insulin resistance you cannot lose weight permanently no matter what you do and the only hope is to reset your body by developing a permanent healthy lifestyle that improves your insulin sensitivity. This lifestyle would consist of a healthy diet that does not spike blood sugar: a diet combining good low-glyemic carbohydrates, good fat and good proteins. It would include a modest consistent exercise program and a good supplement program. Without ever going hungry one can lose weight permanently and at the same time improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels and experience increased focus and energy. If you need guidance then consult a health practitioner who can put you on this path to health and vitality. Remaining overweight is clearly not the path to feeling fit and fabulous.

 

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