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Weight Loss: It is NOT all about calorie counting

I have mentioned before that caloric restriction is extremely important to attain weight loss and fat loss. It is one of the main drivers of weight loss (calories in and calories out); and that a macro approach (counting macros), counting calories, or following a meal plan are excellent and very accurate ways for weight loss. However, as everything else, there can be a different approach for weight loss/fat loss. And that is, by focusing on your hormones! (not calorie counting!)

Hormones or chemical messengers, control many things in the body, from our reproductive system, our growth, our mood, to our hunger/satiety mechanisms. Most importantly, they have the ability to control and maintain your body weight and fat burning capacities. Hormones work in a network, by either affecting one at a time or several at the same time. Therefore, it is primordial to have your hormones working correctly to achieve and maintain a healthy and lean body.

Luckily, hormones can be regulated in many cases with lifestyle changes, nutrition, training and supplements. One of the ways to tell that a diet is working for you is by the increase in energy, mental clearness, quality of sleep and diminished hangry feeling the body experiences.

Therefore, the diet approach to regulate your hormones will be based on figuring out the ratio of carbs/fat/protein your body needs, and what foods work best for you. Additionally, this approach requires more investigative work for the patient to really help her/him figure out their specific needs.

Now, you might wonder, what lifestyle factors affect hormones:

  1. Nutrition: focus on protein and veggies (high in volume, fiber and water) to maintain you full and keep cravings away. Add fats as well to your diet for satiety purposes.

  2. Stress: learn how to manage your stress so that it doesn’t involve soothing with food.

  3. Sleep: get 8 hours of sleep or more per night.

  4. Exercise: high intensity with short duration of time (it might be cardio-based or weigh training-based) has a huger suppressant effect in the body. Check out my Free MetCon guide for ideas.

What are the major hormones regulating body weight?

  • Insulin

  • Glucagon

  • Cortisol

  • Human Growth Hormone (HGC)

  • Hunger Hormones: ghrelin, leptin

In order to achieve weight loss you would like to have Insulin, Cortisol and Leptin on check (remember that if they are high, your body turns into storing mode), and Glucagon and HGC high.

How do I achieve this?

You can achieve this working on the lifestyle factors mentioned above. Diligently figuring out your macronutrient ratios, getting good quality sleep, exercising the necessary and reducing the stress in your life.

If you have any questions you are alway welcomed to shoot me an email!

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