Weight Loss and Supplementation

Supplementation is a subject I don’t talk about often although I do believe in supplementation and wellness. I always say “Nutrition and supplementation before medication.”

Way too often these days doctors are too quick to prescribe medication when the first line of defense should be a healthier diet and nutritional supplements or nutraceuticals to take care of some chronic conditions.

Over the years I have had clients do everything right from their nutrition to exercise, but they still can’t lose weight and they feel super frustrated. One reason for this can be nutritional deficiencies.

Studies show these deficiencies are more widespread than you might imagine. Over 30 percent of American diets fall short of nutrients like magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin E, and vitamin A. Over 80 percent of Americans have low Vitamin D levels. I once worked with a client who started to feel frustrated at the lack of weight loss. As soon as she started taking high quality Vitamin D, she began to lose weight and lost 30lbs over several months.

Nine out of 10 people are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids which, among other things, help cool inflammation and control blood sugar levels.

Uncontrolled or unbalanced blood sugar can cause increased insulin levels which can lead to weight gain.

Insulin is the hormone released by your pancreas. Sugar needs insulin to get into our cells to be used for energy. It’s basically the “key” sugar needs to enter our cells and be used. If  a person suffers from insulin resistance, their cells have literally become resistant to the key (insulin), and sugar can’t get in.

When sugar can’t get in, it has no choice but to hang out in your blood stream. That causes high blood sugar, weight gain (since that excess sugar gets turned to fat), horrible cravings for sugary bad foods, and energy drops that usually lead to cranky moods.

While eating a well balanced diet of whole unprocessed foods high in antioxidants should be the way to good health and prevent disease, we all don’t always get the nutrients we need and supplementing can help fill in the gaps. Especially if those nutrients could hinder your weight loss.

Some supplements I recommend to clients, when weight is not coming off and I suspect some nutritional gaps or imbalances, are Vitamin D, Omega 3 Fish Oil, a multi-vitamin, and CORE which contains a compound called White Kidney Bean Extract. White Kidney Bean extract is a carbohydrate blocker that works by inhibiting the digestion of starches. By inhibiting their digestion, starches that are eaten are either left undigested in the gut or the amount of which is digested is reduced. These starches are either excreted and their calories not absorbed, or they are given to colonic bacteria to ferment. (Source: A Dietary Supplement Containing Standardized Phaseolus vulgaris Extract Influences Body Composition of Overweight Men and Women.)

One other product I recommend which I take is, Green Coffee w/ Garcinia Cambodia (Dellalibera O, Lemaire B, Lafay S. Svetol, green coffee extract, induces weight loss and increases the lean to fat mass ratio in volunteers with overweight problem. Phytotherapie 4:194-7, 2006).

If you think you may have some nutritional gaps, start to keep a food journal to see where your gaps are. Chance are, if you are cutting out certain food groups, some vitamins and minerals you need will be missed.

Make sure you are getting enough protein in your diet as protein has the biggest metabolic boost over the other macronutrients. Getting in exercise at least 3-4x a week, good sleep and water are the basics for good health.

****This is not intended as medical advice. It is important that you check with your doctor before you decide to take supplements especially if you are currently on any medication.