Naturopathy and Weight Management

naturopathy weight managementThere are more deaths from obesity than malnutrition. It is estimated that 63% of adults in Australia are now overweight or obese, and 25% of children. These figures are on a steady incline, as are all the complications that come with it.

With so many “health experts” giving advise on how to eat, it can get slightly overwhelming knowing whose advise you should actually take, and if the latest fad diet is the one that will work for you. Weight loss can be individual at times, as there are other factors that may be hindering you, such as insulin resistance, underactive thyroid and hormonal imbalances.

Your naturopath will take a thorough case history, delving into your personal history to come up with the necessary dietary and lifestyle amendments, as well as any needed supplementation.


Will I have to drink water and eat mung beans all day?

No! Food is one of life’s greatest pleasures, I think it’s important to not think of it as a diet, but think of it as a healthy lifestyle change. It’s not just about losing weight and keeping it off, it’s about feeding your body with nourishing and supportive foods, so you feel better and improve your life expectancy by lowering your risk of so many other illnesses.


Conditions associated with obesity?

So many of today’s deadly diseases have obesity as a causative factor,. Obese people have a 50-100% increased risk of death from all causes, most of the risk if from the following;

  • Hypertension
  • High Cholesterol
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Infertility
  • Back pain

The Low-Down On Cholesterol

cholesterolCholesterol is a type of fat that is carried around in the blood. It performs useful functions in the body and is a major building block for cells and many of your hormones, including oestrogen, testosterone and cortisol. Cholesterol is also important for the synthesis of vitamin D, as well as bile acids which aid in the digestion of fats. Our bodies manufacture cholesterol but it can also be found in foods containing saturated fats. It is important to check your cholesterol levels regularly. Even though our bodies need some cholesterol, having high cholesterol can be bad for your health and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.


The Good vs. The Bad Cholesterol

HDL and LDL are letters that you may have seen before on a blood test, and your Practitioner will be interested in reviewing these to monitor your health. But what do they mean? Your total cholesterol is made up of two types of cholesterol, often referred to as “good” and “bad” cholesterol.

  • High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) is essentially the “good” form of cholesterol. It carries cholesterol from the tissues to the liver to be broken down and excreted. HDL helps to decrease cardiovascular risk.
  • Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) is often referred to as the “bad” form of cholesterol. High levels of LDL cholesterol can leave cholesterol deposits in the arteries, increasing the risk of the coronary artery disease known as atherosclerosis.
  • It is important to keep your HDL:LDL ratio in balance; aim towards having higher levels of the “good” and lower levels of the “bad” cholesterol.

High cholesterol is a complex issue and genetics definitely play a key role in many cases but for a wide variety of people the following suggestions can make an enormous difference, and for those who are genetically predisposed to high cholesterol it is important to make lifestyle and dietary changes that benefit your heart and cardiovascular system even if they don’t necessarily make a huge difference to your actual cholesterol levels.


Natural Support For Cholesterol

Liver Tonics : Making sure the liver is working optimally is extremely important when trying to lower cholesterol. An initial liver detox would be an excellent start, but a general liver tonic that includes the herbs Cynara, dandelion root, milk thistle and fringe-tree would be of great benefit.

  • Polymethoxyflavones: Also known as PMFs, these natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds found in citrus peel assist in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. Research has shown that nobiletin and tangeretin, the phytochemicals found in PMFs, may assist in lowering LDL levels by reducing synthesis and increasing the clearance of LDL cholesterol.
  • Tocotrienols: Tocotrienols are members of the vitamin E family. These antioxidants also increase the clearance of LDL cholesterol and reduce the body’s production of LDL.
  • Krill oil: The oil from the crustacean, krill, has been shown to be beneficial for cholesterol balance, particularly by supporting HDL levels.
  • Fish oil: 2 g to 4 g of combined EPA/DHA has been shown to decrease triglyceride levels and is beneficial for heart health.


Six Tips For Optimal Cardiovascular Performance

Take on these tips for eating and living to support healthy cholesterol and cardiovascular health:

  • Follow the Mediterranean diet. People eating this diet rich in essential nutrients and antioxidants have the lowest rates of cardiovascular disease in the world.
  • Reduce saturated fats by choosing lean meats. Eating too much saturated fat may increase your weight and cholesterol levels.
  • Eliminate detrimental trans fats found in many fast foods, fried foods and packaged baked goods.
  • Cut down on sugary refined carbohydrates and processed food. These foods often contain ‘hidden sugars’ that can be converted to fat when supply is high.
  • Weight loss. If you are overweight, losing extra weight will help to lose the risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease. Your Practitioner can recommend a clinically-proven weight loss program and targeted supplements to assist healthy weight management.


How exercise can improve your health and well being.

anytime-fitness neutral bayHealth Benefits of Exercise.

Exercise reduces the risk for several diseases including heart disease, adult-onset diabetes, high blood pressure or hypertension, breast cancer, osteoporosis and colon cancer. Exercise may also help prevent, or be effective in treating, some mental illnesses, such as depression. For the greatest overall health benefits, experts recommend that you do 20 to 30 minutes of aerobic activity three or more times a week and some type of muscle strengthening activity and stretching at least twice a week.


Other benefits of exercise.

Exercise controls weight:

Exercise can help prevent excess weight gain or help maintain weight loss. When you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn. You don’t need to set aside large chunks of time for exercise to reap weight-loss benefits

Exercise boosts energy:

Winded by grocery shopping or household chores? Regular physical activity can improve your muscle strength and boost your endurance. Exercise and physical activity deliver oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and help your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. And when your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily chores

Exercise promotes better sleep:

Many people report having better sleep when they exercise regularly. Typical improvements include falling asleep more quickly, longer periods of deep sleep, and feeling more refreshed in the morning. Because exercise has a positive impact on stress, anxiety, and depression, all of which interfere with sleep, exercise helps improve sleep and reduce emotional health problems.

Exercise improves mood:

Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed. You may also feel better about your appearance and yourself when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem.


exercise typesTypes of exercise.

Aerobic Training:

A balanced fitness program should include aerobic exercise. Also known as cardiovascular or endurance training, this type of exercise offers benefits such as increased blood flow, boost in HDL, or “good” cholesterol levels, healthy blood pressure and body weight and an overall sense of well-being. There are many aerobic activities from which to choose, including walking, running, swimming, cycling and rowing.

Resistance Training:

While aerobic training offers many health benefits, it does little to tone your muscles. Resistance training, also known as strength or weight training, can reverse the decline in bone density, muscle mass and strength that occurs as you age. It can help you build muscle and burn fat while lowering your risk for heart disease.

Flexibility Training:

Flexibility training, also known as stretching, is an essential component of your fitness regimen. Through stretching, you can reduce muscle cramps, joint stiffness, injuries and stress. Stretching can also help increase your range of motion in your joints and muscles. There are many types of flexibility exercises to keep your interest.