You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that pizza is counterintuitive to a healthy “fat-loss” plan. I’m also sure that you know pizza can cause two different outcomes when ingested by individuals with dissimilar metabolisms. So why is it that your friend can eat all sorts of carbohydrates and be okay; while every calorie that goes into your month seems to end up on your hips?
It’s about time we realize that fat-loss is largely about gene expression and hormonal functionality. This means that your genetic predispositions and your current hormonal balance are the key factors in the controlling how your body processes foods. Our bodies are supposed to be programed to burn fat and be able to withstand long breaks without eating, but because of our eating habits over the last century we have created a shift to more of a carbohydrate based dependency. This has led to our genes expressing a change in our body’s carbohydrate requirements and a need to eat more frequently to balance blood sugar levels.
From a functional standpoint the more you get away from a sensible diet for your metabolism, the further your hormones will be out of balance. In turn, the more your hormones are out of balance the more likely you will have problems with inflammation and body fat. You can see from these points I just mentioned that nutrition is much deeper than the amount of calories you ingest on a daily basis.
In today’s society we have succumbed to “weight-loss programs” that focus on counting calories and using formulas for a recipe to shedding pounds. Well, if the formulas worked, we would not need these “weight-loss programs”. In fact these formulas only work for a select few people and are based on a calorie restrictive diet rather than a customized anabolic metabolism boosting program. So the pounds that you lose are nowhere near that fat pounds that you really want to shed. And as soon as you stop dieting the weight will pack back on. This is because your hormones were never balanced and your metabolism was never increased.
Since fat loss is based on the individual’s gene expression and the individual’s hormonal functionality there cannot be a one size fits all approach to fat-loss. In order for fat-loss to be effective long-term there needs to be a shift in the gene expression to a more anabolic or a high metabolism fat burning state. When the metabolism is performing at a high level the hormones will automatically start to turn to a homeostatic state.
There are some common factors that we can use to achieve a healthier metabolism for gene expression and hormonal functionality. These factors are listed for you below:
- Choose high quality foods. Eat produce that are in season and come from quality source farms. When possible choose food from local farmers. This way you know your food has not traveled far and therefore does not need additives to keep it fresh. Organic produce and free range meat is always the best option.
- Stay consistent on your eating times. By eating on a consistent schedule you will force your body to regulate your circadian rhythm or hormonal patterns. Start a nutrition log to keep you accountable. A nutrition log is a good tool to track consistency, progress and foods that work with your metabolism.
- Increase your protein at meals. Eating a turkey sandwich for lunch is not how you increase metabolism. Take a look at body builders who are the most efficient fat burners. Body builders never have bread with their meals, but have meals packed with lean proteins such as fish or chicken. Many of you may think that you are doomed because your genes are not the same as the body builder, but this is not the case. You can change your gene expression through consistency and a tailored program.
- Eat to support energy levels. When you eat to support energy levels, you will ensure your body gets its required nutrients for that time period. Measuring calories is not critical when you eat to support energy levels.
In summary, fat-loss is primarily driven by our cellular levels and not caloric intake. Until we affect the body’s gene expression and hormone functionality, our bodies will not be able to fully express a fat burning state.
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