10 Reasons It Is Not Your Fault You’re Fat
By Leslie Nance founder of go2kitchens.com
I have not written click bait, I am not selling anything, and I don’t want you to sign up for some special one-time offer to help you de-code why you are fat. This is just simple information that may help you discover a path to the weight loss you seek.
When we focus on a problem, we tend to narrow down what may cause the problem in the first place. When this happens with weight loss, we think balancing “Calories in and calories out” will make us thin. But as most of you have experienced it isn’t always that easy. When you are 40 + years old, it can become even harder to manage that notion.
So if it is not that simple then what is causing this stubborn weight gain and lack of weight loss? Here the top 10 reasons it may not be your fault you are fat.
Recently I was reading an article by Dr. Ronald Hoffman. He was giving some reasons why you may be fat. As I read on, I realized that this had a great impact on all the things I have been teaching for the past 2.5 years. Combine that with the fact that over 65% of American adults (per CDC 2017) are considered overweight or obese I could not ignore the fact that I had to write my thoughts on the subject.
Did you know that the CDC (Center for Disease Control) stated that obesity is the second most preventable cause of death? Only to be eclipsed by smoking tobacco! So imagine if you are overweight or obese and smoking, you need to rethink your lifestyle, or you might not have the luxury to make changes for long because you will be dead!
Because we place the blame game on our genetic code for all that ills us, let’s start there.
- Your Genes
Problem: Will your genes make you bust a seam in your jeans? Unlikely! There is some recent research that says that you might have a “fat gene.” How lucky are you? You must understand that genomics is the hottest trend in “personalized medicine.” The thought is if we know what genetic dispositions you have we can predict your health future. The science as it exists is brand new and a little sketchy for most applications. In fact, it is downright troubling to me what some women are doing to their bodies with this genetic information, a la Angelina Jolie! It is more likely that your gene’s play a much smaller part than the family dinner table did when considering the things you inherited from your family.
What to Do: You can’t kill off your genetic coding, so it is best to work with it. You do not have to assume the destiny of your parent’s illnesses. If you knew you had a genetic disposition to type 2 diabetes would you just give in to it and think it was the luck of the gene pool? I hope not! I hope you would work to support your body so that you would never get type 2 diabetes. You can overcome your genetic coding by paying attention to your health. Read this article to find out more published in the Atlantic in 2011.
Problem: The inflammatory system in the body is there to protect you and promote fast healing in your body. However, we overwhelm it by giving our bodies toxins in the foods we eat. Think of it this way, you eat a known toxin like processed meats, your body has a bit of a panic internally and it sends anti-inflammatory signals to the toxin to protect the rest of the body. What happens is we overwork and cause a chronic state of inflammation that hinders our bodies from working correctly. In laymen’s terms, we are overworking our protective inflammatory system. This contributes to our body’s inabilities to absorb nutrients, move easily and even eliminate properly. It puts stress on the heart, the kidneys and liver. All that can put a strain on your waistline.
What to Do: Eating a diet rich in leafy greens, fresh herbs like parsley and lots of plants will help manage inflammation naturally. Minimizing meat, dairy, and sugar in your diet will play a huge roll in your overall health but especially when it comes to reducing inflammation. When you feel better, it is easier to find the motivation to move. Moving purposefully 20 minutes a day can reduce your cancer risk by up to 50%. Just a short brisk walk around the block is a great solution. Imagine the positive effects these simple things would have on inflammation and obesity!
- Environment Pollution
Problem: The air we breathe is not getting any cleaner. If you live in a city center and even some rural areas you might have seen the pollution in the air. Guess what? Breathing this air can create inflammation. It is just like toxic food in the way that it puts your body in a bit of a panic, sending the inflammatory army to the rescue. A study was done Duke University which exposed pregnant rats to air samples from Beijing China, notorious for their bad air (I have been there, and it is BAD!), for 19 days. These rats saw an increase in tissue inflammation, weighed more, had higher cholesterol and had developed insulin resistance (pre-diabetes). Rats not exposed had much lower levels of all these things.
What to Do: Buy a gas mask? NO! In this example the only thing that makes sense is to take better care of the things you can control like; your food, your beauty products, your cleaning products, do not smoke and drink lots of water. Reducing toxins in things you can control takes the strain off of the body when it needs to combat the things you cannot control, like the air we breathe.
- Gut Health
Problem: Your gut is your second brain. You know the saying “gut feeling”, well there is something to that. Your gut and complementing organs like your large and small intestines are responsible for distributing all of the food you eat. If you have trouble with gut permeability (leaky gut), your weight loss journey might be at a screeching halt! Poor gut permeability can cause poor nutrient absorption and could cause you to overeat. The reason, your body is signaling that it needs nutrients and the best way to get them is from food …so send some more food down! This vicious cycle can cause inflammation, weight gain and a whole host of problems in your human body.
What to Do: Find some great gut healing protocols. Your body is made up of millions and millions of bacteria, both good and bad. When you have an overgrowth of harmful bacteria mostly from toxic processed food your gut will get overwhelmed. To reverse this naturally, you can start by eating more pro-biotic and prebiotic foods. Foods that have been lacto fermented like, real sauerkraut, kimchee, Kombucha, miso, kefir and raw yogurts (with no sugar added) are feeding the good bacteria in your gut so they can stage a takeover of the bad bacteria. It is important to note that pre-biotic foods are just as important. Raw asparagus, onion, and banana are all a good source of pre-biotic foods. You can also supplement with a good pro-biotic, just make sure you are getting a good living pro-biotic brand, or they will not survive the heat and rigors of digestion. Getting your digestion in line is one of the first lines of defense to shedding that unwanted weight. Check out The Digestion Doc…she will teach you the way that leads to a healthy gut and digestion!
Problem: You can be the healthiest eater on the planet, and if you are a stress cadet you still might have trouble losing weight! The reason is simple, your hormones. Temporary stress is normal; chronic stress is a killer! In a threatening situation, your body produces two hormones, adrenaline (short-term) and cortisol (long term). Adrenaline is what makes your heart beat fast when you feel a threat or even excitement and yes even nervousness. You might feel your breath catch in your throat when your body releases adrenaline. Cortisol is your bodies built-in alarm system. It gives you that necessary fight or flight reaction when danger is afoot. What you may not know is that it is also in control of how your body uses carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It also manages inflammation, blood pressure, your sleep-wake cycle and your energy levels in times of stress. Made by the adrenal gland, it has a direct connection to your brain. If you are under constant stress, the button that turns on and off the release of cortisol NEVER turns off! It can derail all the functions it is responsible for including weight gain and digestion problems. Read about Cushing’s Syndrome here. Hey, don’t self-diagnose! This a tool to get you some help if you suspect you have Cushing’s!
What to Do: Well reducing sources of stress is a great start. I know, easier said than done. A tested and proven way to reduce stress is to perform some self-care. I am not talking about a shopping spree or a day at the driving range. I am talking about self-improvement. Try yoga, meditations, start a journal, join a gym, join a book club, take cooking classes or find your piece of heaven that makes you smile and feel relaxed just by thinking about it. Then find a non-narcotic way to get some real sleep. 7-9 hours of sound restorative sleep will blow your mind with how much it helps your chronic stress. Look into sleep classes, use essential oils, reduce electronics in the bedroom, take a hot bath before bed, look at your bed as a refuge and not a place of despair where you can’t seem to sleep. Sleep can heal chronic stress!
The Problem: In the book The Allergy Solution: Unlock the Surprising, Hidden Truth About Why You are Sick and How To get Well By Dr. Leo Galland he says “There’s a direct link between allergy and weight gain.” Even more alarming is the fact that body fat increase is closely linked to asthma, allergic rhinitis, and eczema. Often for these conditions, a drug called Prednisone is prescribed, which has known links to weight gain and can even increase the likelihood of type 2 diabetes. If you are an allergy sufferer, you might see increased body fat and have a difficult time losing weight.
What to Do: Food allergens are a culprit. Trying an elimination diet for a few weeks to help you determine what food(s) might be an allergy trigger is a great way to find some relief naturally. You can find lots of resources for how to do an elimination diet; if you sign up here for our newsletter I will send you a free copy of “Cancer Hates It: A Jumpstart Guide for Making the Body Inhospitable to Cancer.” I can tell you that most experts agree that having a food allergy goes way beyond calories in and calories out when it comes to food allergens and your bodies natural responses to them. They can devastate everyday processes in your body.
Problem: Your hormones, and there are many, are your messengers in your body. Signaling responses in your cells to mobilize them to complete a certain task. When they are out of whack, you might be fat! Here is why. Your thyroid controls your body temperature, your metabolism, and your heart rate. Hard to detect Hypothyroidism is under-production of these messenger hormones! This can wreak havoc on your waistline. It will slow your metabolism to a crawl, decrease body temperature, so your fat burning oven is off, and slows your heart rate so that you have no energy to exercise. This is just one example of hormone trouble. Low testosterone in men, estrogen dominance in women, and insulin resistance round out all the reasons you might be having some weight trouble!
What to Do: If you suspect you have an underactive thyroid then talk to an integrative medical professional or functional medicine doctor. This is nothing to mess around with. There are natural ways to support your thyroid, but you should have a formal diagnosis. They are a bit hard to detect since it depends on good cellular health to detect it in the blood levels. Do your homework and learn all you can while you are working with your doctor. Correcting Hypothyroidism will help with weight loss.
Problem: When we think of malnutrition we think of someone who is starving. Does not have enough to eat. The truth is most people who eat a SAD (Standard American Diet) full of processed food, large amounts of toxic meats, sugary soda or drinks and fast food are starving their bodies of life-giving nutrients. Although they are overweight or even obese, they are incredibly malnourished. Deficiencies in nutrients are serious business and open the doors to all kinds of diseases and poor health conditions. For example, if you are deficient in the crucial B Vitamin Complex and magnesium, you might have trouble controlling stress, sleeping well, feel fatigued and have digestive issues. These are things, as you are learning, that cause weight gain and impede weight loss. Low levels of Omega 3 fatty acids, which you can only get in food because your body does not make them, increases your risk of insulin resistance, a pre-diabetic condition.
What to Do: Eat a diet rich in fresh foods, eat more raw plant foods, eat legumes and whole grains. Limit meat and dairy consumption. Stop eating fast food, drinking sugary drinks, eating out of packages and dump processed food. Just by adding two green vegetables a day you can increase major life-giving nutrients. The more you eat of them, the more your body will like them, and you will slowly see your intake increase naturally. You might even crave them!
Problem: Many medicines decrease your ability to lose weight and in some cases even make you gain weight. Statins and Blood Pressure medication might interfere with your ability to exercise. Beta Blockers slow fat burning capabilities. Antidepressant and some Fibromyalgia drugs cause increased appetite. Antibiotics kill your gut microbiome and are a major culprit in leaky gut syndrome. Also, excess insulin, given aggressively, can keep fat on the body.
What to Do: First of all don’t panic if you are taking any of these drugs and certainly do not stop taking them in the name of losing weight. Work towards healing your body and giving it the best chance possible to come off these drugs. It may take months or years, but you can do it and all you need is one Google search to find many people that heal themselves with a lifestyle change and relationship change with food. If you are interested, you can check out 27DayRealFoodChallenge.com. There some pretty hefty success stories to read there.
- The Diet
Problem: You are looking for a quick fix with the least amount to work to turn yourself from overweight to supermodel in 3 weeks. You have to do the work; it is the only way to effectively lose and MAINTAIN your weight loss. There is no super pill or quick fix in the world that will bypass the fact you have to work for it. While it may not be your fault you are fat, the fact is you are, and now is the time to figure out what you are going to do about it. By the way, diets make you fatter!
What to Do: You need a new relationship with food. Not just to shed weight but also to improve your quality of life. To make your body an inhospitable environment to cancer and quash disease before it ever gets started. Having a high BMI (body mass index) is never healthy. You might be able to perform normally, and you might even have all the confidence in the world in your looks. Your body was not designed to carry loads of extra weight. You are putting unnecessary strain on your major organs, wearing out your joints faster and increasing your chance of premature death. It is time to change the way you think about food! I am here to help. I am a Cancer Coach, Holistic Nutritionist, and I have been overweight. Over 200 lbs. and while I could function it was not until I lost the weight that I realized how much more I could do. Please take a moment and read more here at go2kitchens.com. You can do this, it may not be your fault, but you can achieve full and vibrant health!
NOTE: Study links are highlighted for easy reference. Inspired by the work of Dr. Ronald Hoffman