Most of the people who gain weight find it so frustrating because not matter what they try, the scales do not bulge. If you are one of them, you have come to the right place.
Previously we had seen how you gain weight. So before reading this article, read the previous one to understand the weight gain mechanism.
Food is mostly made of carbs, proteins and fats. Carbs and sugars are quickly digested and broken down to glucose which is released into the blood. Glucose is used by the body cells and tissues as energy. Cells require insulin hormone which acts as a key to open the cell walls to allow glucose to enter the cell. A carb rich diet increases glucose levels in your blood. First the liver stores the extra glucose by converting it to glycogen. Left over glucose gets stored as visceral fat. This shows up as belly fat and this condition is called non alcoholic fatty liver. Too much of insulin leads to a condition called insulin resistance where insulin loses its ability to open the cell walls. Blood glucose remains high, however the cells remain energy starved and they keep signalling the pancreas to release more insulin. This also leads to excess weight gain.
Stress releases cortisol hormone which triggers the release of glucose from the liver. This leads to a spike in insulin. Prolonged stressful situations increases insulin and glucose and contributes to weight gain. Hormonal imbalance due to stress or any other reasons also leads to problems like hypothyroidism.
Let us begin the next section by straightway going into an action plan.
Comprehensive action plan
You have to launch a two pronged attack on weight and fatty liver, one will be food and the other stress.
Our attack will consist of the following tools.
- Intermittent Fasting
- Nutrient dense food
- Daily super foods
- Sleep Plan
- Stress Busters
What you need to do – the attack plan
Any attack should come in waves, relentless against your enemy, insulin resistance.
Wave No 1 : Morning walk and Yoga – Begin the day getting up early. Minimum walk of 30 mins in a T shirt and shorts to expose maximum skin to sunlight. Follow this up with suryanamaskar and breathing exercise for another 30 mins.
How it works – Light sets up your circadian cycle. Sunlight helps with Vitamin D. Walking is the only exercise which burns fat. Suryanamakar improves flexibility, muscle tone and strength. It helps with expansion of neck area to combat hypothyroidism. It is also the best counter to stress. You can graduate to jogging or light running at a later stage.
Wave No 2 : Skip breakfast & avoid drinking too much water – Drink water only if you are thirsty. The best meal to be skipped is breakfast. At 8am you can have black coffee with butter or coconut oil.
How it works – Drinking too much water dilutes the already present electrolytes in your body. Hydration does not mean just water. It involves electrolytes too. If you have any ritual of drinking lots of water in the morning with or without ingredients like lemon and honey or jeera, just stop all that. Sip water only if you are thirsty. This will rebuild your body thirst mechanism too.
When you begin intermittent fasting, you need to come down to two meals a day to make a significant dent. Breakfast is the easiest option to skip. Everyday morning like a clock, cortisol gets released at 8am. It makes you feel hungry and crave to have breakfast. To beat this, drinking black coffee is the best option with butter or coconut oil and without milk and sugar.
Wave No 3 : First meal of the day at 1pm – Plan for a nutrient dense meal. Avoid carbs and sugars. That also means no fruits since fructose is processed by the liver. Avoid water before a meal to avoid diluting digestive juices which are acidic. 60% of your plate should be vegetables. 30% protein and rest fats.
How does Intermittent Fasting work – Eating too many times puts a load on your digestive system making the organs work overtime. A diet rich in carbs and sugars leads to insulin resistance and weight gain. To reverse it we need to make insulin sensitive. First meal of the day gets digested in three to four hours. After that since there is nothing in the stomach, the blood glucose levels starts dropping. To compensate that liver releases stored fat converting to glucose and releasing it into the blood. Once the second meal is digested, you are well into deep sleep, and fat burning starts again till you have the next meal, a clear gap of 12 hours. Intermittent fasting helps burn body fat.
Why do you need nutrition – The central theme of Hum Healthy is lose weight by becoming healthy. There is no way out of being healthy. Nutrition can be taken from specific foods. Vegetables and nuts are the most nutrient dense food out there. So is red meat and fish. Make your diet plan to make sure that whenever you eat, your body gets the best dosage of vitamins and minerals. Eggs, garlic, turmeric, lemons, curd, cheese, butter and most of all desi ghee has to be part of your daily meal.
Wave No 4 : Stress busting activities – Listening to music, working on a hobby, art, reading and writing are all proven stress busters. An evening walk at around 6pm helps relieve a lot of stress. A meal at 7pm followed by some time with family will help relax and get ready to sleep. You should be ready to sleep by 10pm to catch the first deep sleep cycle.
How does it work – The last meal helps you to wind up the day to sleep. If you sleep eating carbs or sugars, you will have elevated energy levels which will not help you sleep. A sound sleep is most essential for weight loss and fat burning. Do not consume any snacks or beverages post the last meal. Dim lights help sleep too. Do not watch any news or thriller movie before sleep time. This might keep you excited and away from sleep.
Weight loss depends on nutritious food, intermittent fasting, avoiding carbs & sugars and reducing stress. Each of the things mentioned in this article have a detailed explanation given below as links. For any more details, do search this website.