The products we are using to clean our homes, put on our skin, or the food we eat can help to keep our hormones in balance or really get them out of whack!
I’ve talked to women who have tried every exercise and diet under the sun but still haven’t been able to lose their stubborn saddlebags or thigh fat. This could be part due to jacked up hormones that are causing your body to store fat there.
Controlling fat is largely a hormonal issue. By now we all know that hormones play a large role in how we feel, but they also play a large role in how our bodies metabolize fat and maintain muscle as well.
Have you ever seen that commercial for Alli where the husband and wife are sitting on the couch talking about weight loss and they are both round? Then it fast forwards a few months and the woman still has wide hips and has lost her chest while her husband has gotten thin. Don’t you just hate that!!! It drives me nuts that men can seem to eat whatever they want and a woman can look at a piece of cake and it goes right to her hips.
When hormones are balanced, your health is great. You don’t have mood swings, forgetfulness, depression, weight gain, etc. But, when hormones are out of whack things can get ugly and you feel like you are always in a losing war! You have cravings for unhealthy food, you feel tired and lethargic and don’t have energy for a good workout. Have you ever felt like that? I know I have and it’s awful!
There are four hormones responsible for making you fat and three hormones responsible for making you thin.
Let’s cover the one’s that make you thin first.
HUMAN GROWTH HORMONE:
Human growth hormone or HGH is a fat burner. Usually your body uses glucose as its first source of energy before it taps into fat as an energy sources. HGH changes things and causes your body to use fat first, turning you into a fat-burning machine, literally! If your body has plenty of HGH you don’t have to diet all the time.
HGH also causes your body to grow new muscle cells, which normally stop after your teenage years. Doing resistance training increases the size of the muscle cells you have, but the number of muscle cells never changes…unless there is enough HGH!
HGH also has other benefits like giving you more energy, increasing your sex drive, and giving you young looking skin and healthy hair. Here’s the bad news, HGH starts to fall through our thirties and forties making getting lean and tone harder. Back to the good news, diet and exercise can increase HGH levels here’s how:
- Cut back on carbs at night. If you are following the Fit Body Bootcamp Nutrition plan you are already limit your carbs at night. When you limit carbs at night your body will produce more HGH to accelerate fat loss by slightly increasing metabolism and boosting muscle growth as you sleep.
- Sleep well. If your sleep deprived you’ve pretty much demolished the production of HGH. You need to be in a deep sleep to produce HGH. Try eating cottage cheese at night and limiting caffeine past 3 PM.
- Eat HGH builders. These include things like whole grains, legumes, vegetables and protein.
- Go organic. When foods are loaded with pesticides it lowers HGH. Eat as much organic fruits, veggies, and meat as possible.
- Train like a man. Women are often made fun of for working out “like a girl.” That’s because most women do! They are afraid to sweat and don’t lift anything besides a pink or purple dumbbell. The intensity of your training program will trigger the release of HGH, so start sweating ladies!
I’m sure someone is wondering if you can take a pill to do the work for you and take a short cut. There are HGH pills online and in health food stores, but there is no evidence this stuff works. So forget pills and do the work yourself!
Most people think only men have this hormone, but women do too. It builds muscle, increases energy and sex drive, strengthens your bones, and promotes positive thinking.
Aging makes testosterone levels drop along with alcohol use, smoking and stress. To boost testosterone:
- Eat yellow, orange, and green veggies
- Increase B vitamins through beef, leafy greens and other veggies
- Snack on nuts and legumes
- Consume eggs, poultry and fish for their amino acids which build cells and muscle tissue
- Watch fat intake. You do need some fat in your diet, but get them from nuts, fish, olive oil, and avocados. Limit red meat to 3 times per week.
- Limit caffeine and alcohol. Drinking too much of this will make testosterone levels plummet
If you have high levels of progesterone you could be burning an extra 100-300 calories per day! Hallelujah! Progesterone helps to eliminate bloating and increase mental focus.
Our bodies are truly and amazing machine! For women, every month after you release an egg your body will secrete progesterone, if you don’t get pregnant your progesterone levels fall causing a slow metabolism and low blood sugar which equates to sugar cravings and disrupted sleep.
Be sure to eat lots of B vitamins found in beans, meat, poultry, fish, fruits, and vegetables. Magnesium is the other key nutrient in progesterone production and is found in things like dark leafy greens, almonds, eggs, nuts, beans, and seeds.
Stay tuned for our next segment on the four hormones that make you fat!