Maintaining a healthy weight is a struggle for everyone living in a fast-paced, unpredictable and often stressful environment. However, there are a few key points that anyone can adhere to for healthy weight loss:
- Don't look for magic bullets
- Do everything: diet, exercise, stress reduction, supplements, fasting & detoxing
- Do it all together: don't just do a detox weight loss program and then plan on changing your diet four months to juice fasting and later start an exercise program 3 months after you change your diet.
Now let's look at these points in detail to help you lose weight naturally. Below is a summarized alternative weight loss program that should help you not just lose weight, but boost your overall health and well-being.
Dietary Changes For Natural Weight Loss
According to a survey of 11,000 people conducted by Thomson Medstat, 75% of obese people believe they eat a healthy diet. Inevitably, upon further prodding and analysis, the truth reluctantly comes out. Their diet is invariably filled with high glycemic foods, unhealthy fats, sugars, low protein, and constant snacking; in other words, the perfect recipe for obesity.
- Stick to a Mediterranean diet, low in pastas and grains, but rich in nutrient dense fruits and vegetables, olive oil and omega-3 fatty acids.
- Be careful of allergenic foods that not only cause your body to swell up but also, surprisingly, create cravings for and addictions to those same foods. Chief culprits include wheat, corn, dairy, and soy.
- At the beginning of my newsletter on healthy weight loss, I mentioned that the top rated diet according to Consumer Reports is Volumetrics . Well, Volumetrics is essentially a rephrasing of Joel Fuhrman's "nutrient density" concept. In this case, I think something is lost in the translation. Dr. Fuhrman's idea is that you eat foods that contain the greatest concentration of nutrients with the lowest number of calories. The Volumetrics plan rephrases that idea to say that you want to eat food that provides the highest amount of volume with the lowest number of calories. These ideas are close, and overlap in many areas, but are ultimately very different when it comes to day-to-day application. Volumetrics leads you to foods filled with lots of water and fiber—not unhealthy, but...Dr. Fuhrman's Eat to Live plan leads you to cruciferous vegetables and antioxidant rich berries. Words matter—stick to fruits and vegetables.
- The great thing about approaching food this way is that by concentrating on the things you should eat, you automatically avoid all of the things you shouldn't because, by definition, they are high calorie/low nutrition. This lets you lose weight naturally. Avoid all:
- High sugar foods
- High unnaturally fatty foods (cooked using high Omega 6 vegetable oils)
- Highly processed foods
My one caution on the Fuhrman and Volumetrics programs is that they do not understand the importance of healthy fats: Omega-3, Omega-9, GLA, even some saturated fats such as medium chain triglycerides such as lauric acid – a key component of breast milk. Make sure you add good fats into your diet.
Exercise For Natural Weight Loss
There's no getting around it: you may lose weight, but you won't lose the internal fat that marbles your muscle like a piece of aged, corn-fed prime beef without regular exercise. Make sure your exercise program includes:
- Aerobic exercise (particularly in the form of interval training) to burn calories.
- Weight bearing exercise to build muscle, which burns calories even while you sleep.
It doesn't have to be strenuous to begin with. Start with a leisurely walk around the block and as time goes on start to time yourself. As your energy and metabolism rises, increase the length of time or variety of activities. For example, get a stationary bike and ride for half an hour while watching your favourite TV show. The next step can be either to purchase a home exercise machine such as a Total Gym TR or BowFlex TR or join a fitness club. Improving aerobic capacity is an excellent start, but in order to maintain or accelerate weight-loss, you must increase muscle mass. The only way to do this successfully is through resistance training. Doing a full exercise program for 30 minutes three or four times a week is more than enough to burn off calories and increase muscle mass.
Exercise is not optional; in order for any weight-loss program to succeed,
exercise is mandatory.
Natural Weight Loss Dietary Supplements
Don't believe everything you read in the studies. Although no supplement will work as a magic bullet by itself (you've still got to make the lifestyle changes), there are definitely supplements that can assist the process of natural weight loss:
- Oolong tea and green coffee bean extract, for example, have been proven to assist in weight loss.
- By the way, when it comes to ephedra, it's not particularly dangerous. Instudies comparing groups of people who use ephedra products with those who do not, there is virtually no difference in the rate of heart attacks and strokes! Nevertheless, I am not a fan of ephedra because it exhausts the adrenal glands, and I do not use it in any of my formulations—but nonsense is still nonsense.
- Other supplements such as bacopa, mulungu, ashwagandha, and theanine can help ameliorate many of the causes of stress eating.
- Higher levels of free testosterone in the body encourage the body to gain muscle mass and lose fat. Lower levels cause the reverse. Herbs such asnettles, oats, and tribulus terrestris help free up bound testosterone and raise levels of available testosterone—without actually changing the body's overall level of testosterone.
- Regular use of a men's or women's progesterone crème helps the body balance out estrogen dominance, a major factor in encouraging the body to store fat.
- 7-Keto supplementation can also help.
- Herbs such as konjac mannan and nopal cactus can not only help optimize sugar metabolism, but can also substantially assist in reducing the accumulation of internal fat.
Juice Fasting For Natural Weight Loss
I'm really big on juice fasting. Both fresh vegetable and fresh fruit juices are great, but I would definitely recommend emphasizing the vegetable juices as they are more alkalinizing and contain less sugar. Juice fasting cleanses the body while supplying a dramatic increase in vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Vegetable and fruit juices are a living fuel that takes no digestive energies from the body, allowing the body's entire focus to be on healing and rejuvenation. It is packed with vitamins, minerals, living enzymes, antioxidants, phytochemicals, yet low enough in calories to force the body to cannibalize its own residual waste, propelling you to vigorous physical health and clarity of mind. Fruit and vegetable juices are the cleansers, energizers, builders, and regenerators of the human system. A combination of either fresh, raw fruit or vegetable juices will supply all the enzymes, vitamins, minerals, protein, and fats critical to increased vitality! By adding live juices to one's diet as a daily routine, you supply the body with easily absorbed nutrients, while the body is cleansing itself in the fasting state.
My recommended juice fasting protocol for natural weight loss:
- Fast one day a week on juice and one of the super foods (chlorella, spirulina, stabilized rice bran, Aktivated barley, etc.).
- Once a month, do a 3 day juice/super food fast.
- And twice a year, as part of your bi-annual liver detox, do a 5-6 day juice/superfood fast.
Here's an interesting thought to keep in mind. If all you do is fast just one day a week, it adds up spectacularly. In seven years, you will have fasted for one entire year. For the average person, that represents 1.5 pounds saved every two weeks—39 lbs in body weight at the end of the seven years! What do you think a year of fasting every seven years would do to optimize your health—let alone slow down any weight gain you might otherwise have experienced?
Detoxing For Natural Weight Loss
If you are not experiencing regular bowel movements (2-3 bowel movements daily), then fermentation of carbohydrates and putrefaction of proteins (toxemia) found in fecal material occurs. Autointoxication is the result which is best defined as the process in which the body is poisoned through reabsorption its own waste that would normally be excreted. Not eliminating properly or being constipated is like having your city garbage collector go on strike for days on end. What happens? The garbage piles up, rots, putrefies or ferments, begins to smell, and affects the surrounding area in many ways. The same thing happens in our own sewage system.
Not only is detoxing beneficial for your overall health, it:
- Optimizes your absorption of nutrition so you need less food to get the same level of satisfaction and nutrition.
- Potentially can clean pounds of waste from your colon.
- Can help to purge pounds of accumulated water (edema) stored as an allergic response to the presence of uneliminated and highly toxic waste.
- Flushes fat from the liver and other internal organs—making you internally thin, as well as externally beautiful.
Does all this seem overwhelming? It shouldn't. If you're following the Baseline of Health® Program as outlined in Lessons from the Miracle Doctors, you're doing most of it already.