Your metabolism doesn’t just break as you get older.

Hormones and thyroid don’t mysteriously go off the rails.

There are triggers that create glitches in the system that lead to weight gain.

No one intends to over eat or develop a ravenous appetite and food addictions.

Beliefs and thoughts lead to habits and behaviors that create weight gain.

If you’re stressed, dissatisfied with life or not wanting to feel the emotions you’re feeling it’s not uncommon to find a vice to help. 

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Your coping mechanisms are often the main source of packing on pounds. 

Here’s the most common scenarios:

  1. Stress eating = stuffing down emotions of sadness, anger, frustration, anxiety & depression
  2. Boredom eating or drinking 
  3. Drinking to relax each evening
  4. Taking edibles or marijuana products that trigger hunger
  5. Microbiome imbalances can cause increases in yeast or bacteria that trigger carb cravings
  6. Stress can cause cortisol and blood sugar to rise and drop; the drops trigger carb cravings
  7. Junk food’s dopamine boost creates food addictions fueled by flavor chemicals
  8. Flavoring and texture chemicals in food trash your microbiome, hormones, thyroid, organs and cell function
  9. Overconsumption of processed foods slows the detox of cells, organs, and hormones

Even if the processed foods are “natural” or “organic” they are still man made and with that comes tricky ways to get you to eat more of a product!

Not many dream of eating copious amounts of meat, whole grains, veggies or fruit. 

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Most adults under eat the amount of protein they need to maintain…

  • Muscle, bones and strength
  • Production of neuro-chemicals like serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin
  • B vitamin levels to help with energy production and detox of the cells
  • Brain function

When you want to lose weight you don’t want to lose muscle you want fat loss.

This is why the number on the scale is misleading. 

Measuring your waist at your belly button, your upper thighs and arms will give you a more accurate response for fat loss. 

Gurus all over social media are telling you all about protein but they don’t get deep into why. 

How much protein do you need?

0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight is the base amount but I find most of us need 1-1.2 grams per kilogram of body weight.

Those that are working out daily for 30 minutes or more may need up to 1.5 grams per kilogram of body weight. 

Especially if you’re lifting heavier weights and adding in intensity to your workouts.

How do you know what’s best for you?

You can take photos of yourself and do measurements while working on exercise to gain muscle…

…or you can test your body fat, bone and muscle mass with a DEXA scan.

Yes, that’s the same scan docs use to look at bone density but it is also incredibly useful to determine fat and muscle weight too. 

There are testing centers that do this everywhere and a quick online search will give you options.

Once you have your baseline then it’s time to increase your protein and workout intensity over time. 

And take a picture every week to catalog progress or get a DEXA every 3 months. 

What if you can’t tolerate protein or you’re not eating meat for certain reasons?

If high protein meals, especially red meat or pork have you feeling puffy, bloated or bogged down it’s likely you’re deficient in stomach acid. 

This is a natural occurrence with age and one of the reasons why you gain weight!

You don’t absorb protein so you’re triggered to eat more carbs or you don’t digest it well so you eat more carbs.

Either way it’s a trigger for weight gain.

A similar phenomenon is skipping meals then getting so hungry you eat whatever you can get in your mouth fast!

Then wondering how that entire bag of chips went so fast!

It’s easy to have amnesia when it comes to your diet. 

Slowing down to take notes can be eye opening.

Because weight gain is so connected to beliefs that trigger habits and routines it’s vital to look at how you perceive weight with age. 

I was taught that it’s hard to lose weight with age so I believed that would happen to me too. 

There’s data to show that you create habits, routines and behaviors to support your beliefs.

Take a moment to think about your thoughts on weight gain with age.

What do you have stuck deep in your rooted beliefs on this?

Know you can change your beliefs on anything and reimagine getting older all the way down to your metabolism. 

What keeps weight off and fires up metabolism with age?

  • dialing in your protein intake and prioritizing it
  • strength training to build muscle as more muscle = greater metabolic capacity and faster metabolism
  • challenging your body with different workouts every 4-5 weeks 
  •  
  • movement daily – the more you can more every hour of the day the better
  • adding in at least twice weekly cardiovascular conditioning work for your heart and body to optimize fat burn
  • giving your body at least 12 hours between dinner and breakfast to let the cells catch up
  • assessing your micronutrient needs to ensure mitochondria are working well – ex: Micronutrient Testing
  • ensuring your kidney, liver, hormone, blood sugar and thyroid function are all in check

The optimization of your metabolism is an ongoing process as the body changes. 

You can’t fix something and be done with it forever!

Your body evolves with you. 

Stay curious about your body, learn what works for you and keep optimizing it. 

This week I have a 2 part interview with Cody Watkins on his approach to metabolism and fat loss from a fitness professional’s view.

Next week I’m interviewing a fellow naturopathic doctor – David Duzier on his view.

Ep 448 & 449 with Cody Watkins can be found on my website – HERE

Have a great weekend!

Here’s to an optimized metabolism,

Dr. J

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