POP Goes Your Health!

I was enlightened on the horrific stats regarding soda pop consumption by a very trusted source, Dr. Joseph Mercola.  I’m not a pop drinker, so I breathed a sigh of relief…if only for a moment, and then realized how many people in my life are hooked on the sugary beverage.  And what’s worse?  The diet version!  Every pop drinker should read this… Even my teenagers thought it was “disgusting”. And with nearly obesity levels soaring amongst Canadians, anything you can do to stop weight gain is critical.

 

How Soda Affects Your Body

Did you know that just one can of Coke contains 10 teaspoons of sugar?!

This is 100 percent of your recommended daily intake (which is more than double my recommended daily allowance to begin with). Within 20 minutes of drinking that soda, your blood sugar spikes, and your liver responds to the resulting insulin burst by turning massive amounts of sugar into fat.

Within 40 minutes, your blood pressure rises due to your body having absorbed all the caffeine, and then your liver dumps even more sugar into your bloodstream.

After about one hour, you’ll start to have a sugar crash, which oftentimes leads you into a vicious cycle of consuming more sugar – and caffeine-laden stimulants, followed by crashes, throughout your day.

It is a proven fact that sugar increases your insulin levels, which can lead to not only weight gain, but also high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, premature aging and many more negative side effects.

In fact, sugar is so bad for your health in so many ways, I’ve created an entire list outlining the ways sugar can damage your health.

How Soda Damages Your Health and Cuts Years off Your Life

One of the more troubling health risks soda drinkers face (as if obesity isn’t bad enough) is a higher cancer risk. Numerous studies have pointed out the link between sugar and increased rates of cancer, suggesting that regulating sugar intake is key to slowing tumor growth.

Studies have linked sugar intake with different types of cancer, such as:

Soda has even been shown to cause DNA damage, courtesy of sodium benzoate, a common preservative found in many soft drinks, which has the ability to switch off vital parts of your DNA. This could eventually lead to diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver and Parkinson’s.

Gout is another common health challenge that disproportionally affects soda drinkers, and this is directly related to the fructose content of soda. In fact, studies have shown that other beverages with high fructose content, such as fruit juices, and even consuming large quantities of fresh fruits can raise your risk of gout.

How is this possible?

Well, first of all, please understand that it’s not the fructose in and of itself that is bad. Whole fruits for example are a nutritious part of your diet when consumed in moderation.

It’s the MASSIVE DOSES of fructose you’re exposed to that spell trouble.

Fructose, as opposed to glucose, is particularly damaging to your body due to the way it’s metabolized. The entire burden of metabolizing fructose falls on your liver, which creates a number of waste products and toxins, including a large amount of uric acid, which drives up blood pressure and causes gout.

Likewise, it’s the difference in how your body responds to fructose that also makes it the leading cause of obesity.

Whereas glucose suppresses the hunger hormone ghrelin and stimulates leptin, which suppresses your appetite, fructose has no effect on ghrelin and interferes with your brain’s communication with leptin. The result is overeating, weight gain and ultimately obesity.

Last but certainly not least, fructose clearly raises your insulin levels, which is at the heart of nearly every disease known to man – not just diabetes. In fact, controlling your insulin levels is one of the most important things you can do to optimize your overall health, and avoiding sugar, and most definitely fructose, is essential to do this. If you want to stop weight gain, read about the other 4 foods that can sabotage your weight loss efforts here.

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

The Missing Link: Stress and Weight

Who has not experienced 24/7 STRESS?  As busy women most of us do regularly, however, we were never meant to experience CHRONIC STRESS!  We are supposed to have small amounts which are both beneficial and necessary, followed by a return to a state of relaxation.  Hmmm, what is that you ask?

Stress releases the hormone CORTISOL responsible for many important functions in our body:

  • Glucose metabolism
  • Blood pressure regulation
  • Insulin release to maintain level blood sugars
  • Inflammation response

When we have too much cortisol in our body for too long (that would be for most of us!)  it adversely affects many important functions.  The missing link for many women and PROBLEMS WITH WEIGHT LOSS IS STRESS AND CORTISOL!  Here’s why:

Too much cortisol causes

  • Decreased thyroid function
  • Sugar imbalances
  • Increased abdominal fat
  • Decreased immune system function (this is another very significant finding that stress=sickness)

I see women in my practice who complain that they exist on “carrots and celery”, yet do not lose any body fat at all, ever.  While a low calorie, deprivation diet is very unhealthy (e.g. lowers metabolism and deprives the body of needed nutrients) when I ask about their stress levels inevitability one of the missing pieces becomes clear. The reason for stress and weight gain? Cortisol is often the culprit!

So, what can we do to reduce our constant stress and therefore reduce our cortisol levels? Here are some useful tips – both nutritional and lifestyle:

  1. Walk daily – for exercise AND very therapeutic.  I personally have conversations with myself :)
  2. Yoga – studies do show it definitely works to reduce stress and weight and has numerous other health benefits
  3. Breathe deeply, often!  Simple, yet extraordinarily effective and feel effects immediately!
  4. Sex – YES, sex reduces stress in many ways, not the least is that in women it releases our “feel good and loving” hormone, Oxytocin.  Try it and see for yourself!
  5. Use femMed natural supplements formulated specifically for women.  In particular, I recommend Weight Management, Hormonal Balance and Menopause Relief to help reduce stress and cortisol.
  6. Exercise moderately 5-6 times a week.  Even 30 minutes makes an enormous difference.
  7. 200 mcg Chromium may help reduce sugar cravings
  8. Carbs are not ALL bad – try eliminating all white carbs and do add in brown rice, sweet potato, whole and ancient grains, oatmeal and lots of brightly coloured vegetables.  Why?  Helps raise your feel good neurotransmitter – SEROTONIN.  Amino acids also do this, naturally.
  9. Empower yourself with supportive personal development seminars and weekends, such as the upcoming Have It All Women’s Weekend, May 4-6

As women, our health must come first – without it we cannot assist our families, colleagues, friends and most of all, ourselves!  Please commit to adding in just 3 of the stress reducers for the next 30 days and let us know how you feel.  Fight stress and weight gain. YOU are worth it!

In health,

Camille

Read more articles on Stress and Weight

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

How Much Should You Weigh?

In 1998, a report containing the conclusions of a panel of health experts set guidelines for deciding when excess weight should be considered a health risk. They determined that three pieces of information were needed to decide whether weight loss should be recommended to improve current and future health:

1. Body weight compared to height
2. Waist circumference
3. Presence or risk of cardiovascular disease

Read about it in our September issue of WomanWise

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin