Weight loss is tricky for most of us and gets more difficult the older we get.
Here are some tricks and tips to get diets to work and keep working past plateaus.
1. Do a cleanse. Whole body cleanses get the digestive tract moving. Remember that toxins are stored in fat and as fat breaks down, it is important to get not just the fat out of your body, but the toxins as well. Cleanses do lots of good things for the body besides just tuning up the organs of elimination. Most people report side effects such as more energy, better sleep, and just feeling better in general.
2. Support your liver. The liver metabolizes fat - it can need extra help during times of weight loss. And sometimes fat is stored on the body because the liver is not functioning as well as it should. Clean and support your liver so that it supports and cleans you.
3. Reduce your stress level. Stress makes weight loss harder as stress hormones increase your blood sugar levels and pack on weight around your middle. If you can’t put your life on hold, you might want to take a stress hormone balancer to help you feel calmer while getting rid of that belly fat.
4. Balance your hormones. Women have a harder time with weight loss than men – it’s just not fair – and mid-life hormonal changes make it even less fair. Things like birth control, hormone replacement and just typical hormone imbalances make it very difficult to lost weight. Estrogen is a necessary hormone, but when imbalanced, it wreaks havoc - particularly on weight. So many chemicals in our environment mimic estrogen which is a fat building hormone. Even body fat makes estrogen. So, if you want to lose weight, getting your hormones balanced is very important.
5. Maintain your muscle mass. Part of the challenge with weight loss, particularly as we age is keeping muscle mass. This requires eating protein and doing some kind of weight bearing exercise.
6. Pay attention to food sensitivities - remember, everyone has these. I like the blood type guidelines for these if you do not know what yours are. Foods that do not agree with us, may be the ones we crave, or think we could not live without, so it is important to find out what these are for you. Food sensitivities slow your metabolism down, cause systemic inflammation and inhibit weight loss.
7. Sleep. Sleeping through the night is important for the repair cycle of the body. Not sleeping well throws the body out of balance and makes it more likely to gain weight and harder to lose weight.
8. Stay alkaline. Fat is very acid and as you burn fat, your body gets acid. You can measure this with pH tape (urine test), but the best sign is that your urine burns or seems hot. Another sign that acid pH has gone on too long is that your hair starts falling out.
Things that help with alkalinity are lots of vegetables, club soda and coral calcium.
9. Drink healthy drinks. Plain water is the best, but I love no calorie drinks made with flavored stevia because they help add variety. The English toffee is good in just about anything – it makes club soda taste like cream soda. The berry flavored stevia is also very good in lots of things. It makes berry limeade and it makes unsweetened cranberry juice taste great. There are several popular flavors.
The main trick with dieting is finding what works for you and staying motivated. I hope these tips help you.
Margaret Durst owns The Green House, a vitamin, herb and health food store in Mason, Texas. www.naturalcowgirl.wordpress.com