All Natural Weight Loss

January 13, 2012 in Diabetes, General, Health, Nutrition, Weight Management by Mary Ireland

My post last week covered research showing that dieting alters hormones so that after the dieting stops, a person is hungrier and has a slower metabolism than before dieting. The subjects in the research were on an extreme low-calorie diet, which consisted of Optifast shakes and two cups of low-starch vegetables, totaling just 500 to 550 calories a day for eight weeks.

While I understand that a lot people may take this crash dieting approach to losing weight, I wish that someone would conduct research on people who take a more moderate -- dare I say "sensible" --approach to losing weight. Perhaps the body's reaction is not so much to losing weight, but to the trauma of being starved and not getting the nutrients that it needs to function properly. Starvation aside, let's look at what these people in the study are actually "feeding" their bodies. The "ingredients" in the Optifast Chocolate Shake are:

UD nonfat dry milk, fructose, calcium caseinate, canola oil, cocoa (processed w/ alkali), hydrolyzed cornstarch, sodium chloride, postassium citrate, lecithin, mono and diglycerides, potassium phosphate dibasic, magnesium oxide, potassium chloride, choline bitartrate, natural and artificial flavors, ascorbic acid, carrageenan, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, alpha tocopheryl acetate, niacinamide, copper gluconate, calcium pantothenate, manganese sulfate, vitamin a palmitate, yridoxine hydrochloride, BHA/BHT (to preserve freshness), thiamin hydrochloride, riboflavin, chromium acetate, folic acid, biotin, potassium iodide, sodium molybdate, sodium selenite, phytonadione (vitamin k1), cholecalciferol (vitamin d3), cyanocobalamin(vitamin b12)."

Holy cow! Really? How could anyone expect a body to function normally after eight-weeks of 500 to 550 calories of THAT? I think that the human body -- which has evolved over hundreds of thousands of years -- just cannot adapt to those unpronounceable and unrecognizable "ingredients," the two cups of non-starchy vegetables not withstanding. Look at the number two ingredient in the shake - fructose. Really!? The fact is that under these conditions, the body is not getting what it needs. Did anyone consider that the post-diet hunger is the body's way of communicating that it needed nutrients - nutrients that come from real food.

Roy Walford, an expert on anti-aging conducted research on extending the life span of humans by restricting calories, while providing all of the nutrients that the body needs. Dr. Walford was the crew physician for the Biosphere 2 project. The Biosphere 2 crew found that they could not grow as much food as they had planned on. Dr. Walford, using his previous work on calorie restriction and anti-aging, convinced the crew to follow his calorie restriction diet -- resulting in dramatic weight loss and improved health. His calorie restriction diet focused on low-calorie, nutrient dense food -- a concept that you have seen talked about a lot in these blogs. One of the basic tenets of Dr. Walford's diet is to provide the body with all of the nutrients it needs.

On Dr. Walford's diet each of the crew got 1,800 calories a day. During the first six months, the male crew members lost an average of 18 percent of body weight, the females 10 percent. Blood pressure was about 20 per cent lower than before the experiment, with cholesterol and triglyceride levels lowering to ideal. The crew members' diabetes risk factor and blood sugar levels dropped by an average of 30 percent. You can learn more about Dr. Walford's approach in his books The Anti-Aging Plan: The Nutrient-Rich, Low-Calorie Way of Eating for a Longer Life--The Only Diet Scientifically Proven to Extend Your Healthy Years and Beyond the 120 Year Diet : How to Double Your Vital Years.

Dr. Grandma's recipes fit right in to a sensible diet that focuses on nutrient dense, low-calorie foods. Check out Dr. Grandma's recipes today and start giving your body what it needs to be healthy and happy.