Wanting to find that perfect diet, or natural supplement to help you lose weight before summer comes? Are you one of the many Americans who are overweight and looking to make a change in your health?
There are many fad diets out there, and there are many time-honored and effective nutritional plans for health. I lean most toward a simple whole foods food plan that can be tailored to the individual’s needs. Basic whole foods nutrition means intact, natural and non refined products. We do focus on essential fatty acids and unsaturated oils, and will structure the meal with a focus on vegetables, beans and grains. Meat (organic) are included for some, but they do not serve as a focus of the meal. Nutrient dense foods such as whole grains, (quinoa, millet, brown rice, amaranth), yams, squash, nuts, dark green leafy vegetables (kale, collards, mustard greens, etc) edame soy beans, other legumes, bright colored vegetables all have the innate ability to restore your body. Stay away from foods that create stress on your system such as colas, fried foods, highly processed foods, white flour, white sugar, caffeine and alcohol.
Variations on the theme of whole foods exist. Some examples of the various plans that are out there are: Food Intolerance/allergy Elimination Diet, Macrobiotics, Adkins, Clinical Detoxification (many variations), Eat Right for your Type, Zone, Paleo. Not all of these restrict processed foods, however. And not any of these are effective for every one person. It is a process to determine what is best for you.
One trend is toward “low-fat” packaged foods which are often high in sugar and artificial ingredients. I recommend the avoidance of foods that have been chemically altered to be low in fat. Your body sees this as foreign and must use metabolism to detoxify it. It is much more effective to break the cycle of fat cravings and follow nature’s lead. Focusing on foods that are naturally low in fat and sugar, including the need for essential fats (like omega 3, 6 and 9 oils) and breaking the cycle of bingeing and overeating is crucial. Then your body can manage and enjoy the richer foods on occasion and in moderation.
Fasting or highly restrictive “diet plans” are the most prone to yo-yo weight loss and gain effects. There is certainly a time and place for forms of restriction and therapeutic fasting, and I see good results in my practice supervising this for people. But overall in American culture it is not a therapeutic caliber of diet plans out there.
Especially detrimental to folks trying to lose weight is the process of eating very little during the day in an attempt to limit calories, only to find oneself extremely hungry and bingeing at the later part of the day. Skipping breakfast, or having only refined flour based foods with no lean protein is a stress to blood sugar control and does contribute over time to weight gain. Eating regular whole foods based three meals a day, with snacks mid morning and mid afternoon is an effective way to lose weight. I am always pleased to hear the opt repeated statement in my office, “I am eating more than I usually do, and I have lost weight.”
Treat underlying diseases effectively.
Naturopathic medicine distinctly focuses on the inherent wisdom of the body in our work to re-establish balance. The symptom of obesity is a message the body is using to communicate with the whole body-mind-spirit. When the body has become obese, it is imperative to retrace the path and habits and experiences that helped lead to this state. If an underlying digestive or endocrine system disease is present, it is necessary to target our natural therapies to re-balance this health. Then in its wisdom, the body can let go of the extra pounds.
Create a balanced exercise program
Choosing exercises that you love to do will lead to more consistent work-out sessions. Don’t dread the work-out, but commit yourself to a plan of action that includes both strength training and aerobic exercise. Most people attest that partnering with others in exercise, whether a personal trainer or a friend or a group at a gym, leads to more consistent commitment to the exercise plans.
Workouts should start at 50-70% of your max heart rate for 12-30 minute sessions, three times a week. Figuring your maximum heart rate is done by taking 220 – (YOUR AGE)____ = ____________( YOUR Max HR) Be sure to always warm up and cool down, and then monitor your heart rate during the aerobic exercise to be within your guidelines. Be sure to get a physical exam prior to starting if you have been sedentary, and have any health concerns.
Vary your activities to decrease the amount of impact on all areas of your body. Choose from a variety of exercises like: walking, stair climber machine, climbing stairs, cross-country ski machine, treadmill, EFX elliptical cross trainer, stationary cycle, aerobics class, step aerobics, In line skating, circuit training, etc.
Coaching yourself to slenderness is also a crucial part of a successful weight loss program. Keep your self talk positive, use supportive friends and coaches, and try to make your goals realistic. If you find yourself being critical, making excuses, or being negative, take a moment to replace this talk with accepting, supportive and encouraging thoughts. Keep in mind that the relationship that you are trying to re-build with your body is best to be in a foundation of self-love and gentle encouragement. Self acceptance is a large part of the work.
In creating the size and shape of the body you would like to have, be sure to acknowledge your good qualities and accept yourself fully in your current state. Step back and enjoy the work you are doing to create a more vibrant and healthy you.
About Dr. Kim
Dr. Kim Furtado, N.D. is hosting a “Vibrant Woman in You” on May 15-17, 2015 and invites you treat yourself and take a break! Kim D. Furtado, N.D. received her Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (N.D.) degree from Bastyr University in Kenmore, Washington. (www.bastyr.edu ) She also holds a Bachelor of Science Cum Laude in Biology from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. She has been in private practice in Lewes Delaware since 2001.
For more information about the retreat, please visit:http://www.drkimfurtado.com/workshopdescriptions/vibrantwomaninyou.html
Registration for The Vibrant Woman in You on May 15-17,2015 is welcome.
Early registration discount of $50 is available for those who register before April 15 and registration will remain open through May 15, or until all spaces are filled.
The Barn at Two Rivers is a beautifully renovated historic property tucked up against the mountains of Harper’s Ferry, just 80 miles from Washington, DC. Original to the Civil War era, the Barn has been newly renovated to provide a serene setting for health retreats and small conferences.
Registration Fee: $575
For any registration completed 30 days prior to workshop: Receive a $50 Discount!
Lodging is not included, but is available on first come first serve on site.
Dr. Kim Furtado, N.D.
At Quakertown Wellness Center
For more information call 302-945-2107