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In this episode of The C60 Show, Sierra and Ken discuss the multitude of hormonal factors that contribute to weight, and ways in which diet, exercise, and C60 Purple Power can help your body to balance itself naturally.
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Maintaining a healthy weight is a sensitive matter that is directly related to both physical and emotional signals. The subjects of weight and food choice are often deeply personal, and it may be difficult to ask for help if you’re looking to make changes in this area.
On a biological level, many things contribute to both weight gain and weight loss. We’ve compiled a list of factors that contribute to a healthy metabolism, foods, and movement that can support it, and how C60 Purple Power contributes to healthy weight management.
How Hormones Contribute to Metabolic Function
“Metabolism isn’t just about how quickly you burn calories—it encompasses all the ways your body stores and uses energy,” clarifies Sierra Samuel, health coach and co-host of The C60 Show. A big part of this is both the production and function of hormones within the body. Certain hormones decrease as a person ages, especially “sex hormones” such as estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and HGH, or human growth hormone. An excess (estrogen, for example) or lack (such as testosterone) of certain hormones can lead to a loss of muscle tone and increased fat.
For instance, estrogen dominance can be aggravated by excess fat, which becomes a loop where more fat cells make more of the hormone, which creates more fat. This is one reason why it’s important to avoid environmental toxins that contain xenoestrogens, found in plastics, cans, and non-organic meats and dairy products, to name a few sources. This harmful category of estrogen creates confusion in the body’s hormonal signaling processes, which can contribute to excess weight and other problems in the body.
Ensuring the body makes proper levels of both DHEA and thyroid hormone (T4 and T3) also contributes to a healthy weight. Adequate thyroid hormone is integral to metabolism, and DHEA is sometimes converted into estrogen or testosterone, the balance of which is essential to weight management. Adrenal health also plays a role; the adrenal glands are partly responsible for the synthesis of DHEA, so it’s critical to know if the adrenals are functioning properly.
Additionally, adrenal dysfunction often goes hand in hand with thyroid disorders. Therefore, thyroid and adrenal health are areas to examine if there appears to be an inexplicable weight loss factor or weight management. Paying attention to where fat deposits tend to collect on the body can also be a helpful indication of which of these hormones may be too low or too high. Charts are available online to help understand which hormones encourage which types of body fat.
Hunger Signaling and Energy Burning Hormones
A whole host of lesser-known hormones are responsible for the messages that tell the body to eat more, eat less, and when to utilize fat as energy. Ghrelin, aka the “I’m hungry” gremlin, continues to be produced at the same rate regardless of how long a low-calorie diet is maintained. This is one reason that diets based on caloric restriction tend not to work.
Regular workouts focused on cardio exertion tend to drop levels of ghrelin, so exercise in conjunction with other changes in eating habits (focusing on whole foods that contain more protein, fiber, and beneficial fats) can help to lessen the feeling of always being hungry if that is one of the factors making it difficult to manage weight.
Leptin is responsible for letting us know when to eat less. Interestingly, it is produced by fat cells, which makes sense if an excess of fat is letting us know we don’t need as much caloric intake, but the problem occurs when an excess of fat is sustained for a prolonged period. Higher fat in the body means more leptin, but eventually, the brain encounters leptin resistance, where it can no longer read and communicate the signal that hunger is satiated. Both losing weight and eating plant-based foods can help reverse this process. “Food that is high in antioxidants increases sensitivity to leptin,” explains Ken Swartz, research scientist and co-host of The C60 Show.
Other hormones that contribute to fat storage and burning processes include insulin, adiponectin, and glucagon. In order to manage insulin levels, one of the hormones that tells the body when to store energy and when to burn it, it is advised to eat foods with a low glycemic index (GI). High GI foods like processed carbs and simple sugars quickly become stored as fat within the body if they are not burned immediately. In contrast, low GI foods like whole grains, proteins, and fats take longer to break down, giving the body a steady energy source so that they do not get turned into fat as quickly. Low GI foods enable insulin to utilize blood sugar as energy rather than immediately sending it away to store as fat cells.
Adiponectin and glucagon work together to tell the body when to release and use energy stored as fat. Adiponectin is produced by fat cells in the body but actually occurs in higher levels the less fat a person has. Interestingly, foods rich in monounsaturated fats, such as nuts, olive oil, avocado oil, and fish, help the body to produce more adiponectin. This is another reason why it’s important to include healthy fats in a weight loss diet. Like adiponectin, glucagon levels rise the leaner a person’s body is. This hormone responsible for breaking down stored carbs and fats is increased by eating foods high in protein and low in carbohydrates.
Epinephrine, which acts as both a hormone and neurotransmitter, also signals a decrease in appetite. Produced in the medulla of the adrenal glands, it is also known as adrenaline, aka the “fight or flight” hormone. HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts can temporarily boost epinephrine, helping to lower appetite. It is important to note that epinephrine/adrenaline is not the same as cortisol. However, long-term stress, which is related to epinephrine production, can cause chronically elevated levels of cortisol. This can increase blood sugar levels, which escalates the risk of diabetes and weight gain. Therefore, short, intentional periods of physical stress like HIIT or cardio bursts can produce helpful epinephrine levels. However, prolonged, excessive exercise or chronic stress can cause inflammation and weight gain due to excess cortisol production.
Foods That Support Metabolism and Some Foods to Avoid
When it comes to finding the best combination of practices and habits that support a healthy weight, diet is usually the first thing people want to talk about. It may be obvious which foods to choose and which to avoid, but as mentioned above in the discussion about ghrelin, there’s more to managing weight than just choosing the lowest calorie options. In fact, a lot of nutrient and calorically-dense foods support a highly functioning metabolism.
Fiber-rich foods do the double duty of slowing the breakdown of sugars and removing excess estrogen from the body. Many fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes are high in fiber content. To support a healthy hormone balance, it’s also helpful to opt for grass-fed, pasture-raised organic meats and dairy. Conventional (non-organic) farming often uses hormone injections and prophylactic antibiotics in their animals. The excess hormones and antibiotics are then consumed in meat and dairy products, which influence hormones and destroy healthy gut bacteria in the human body.
It’s also wise to note that even organic options of animal products will still contain small levels of naturally occurring hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. Because hormones like estrogen are fat-soluble, the hormone level is higher in whole milk than in skim milk. Whole milk, however, metabolizes more slowly than skim milk, which is turned to glucose more quickly and spikes blood sugar. The best dairy options for most people are organic whole milk products eaten in small to moderate amounts.
Other foods that support a higher metabolism, which increases the body’s absorption of nutrients, include protein-rich foods from both plant and animal sources, foods high in antioxidants like brightly colored fruits and vegetables, and those that are rich in selenium, zinc, and iron, such as meats, seafood, legumes, and nuts. These nutrients contribute to beneficial thyroid function, and legumes and nuts are also high in fiber. Warming spices like chili peppers and ginger help boost metabolism and moderate amounts of coffee and green tea. Cacao nibs, apple cider vinegar, and MCT coconut oil can increase metabolic function, as well as seaweeds which contain vital micronutrients.
It’s beneficial to avoid highly processed foods, which the body has difficulty recognizing and using efficiently. Also, check for soy ingredients in any foods you buy. While fermented soy products like tempeh and miso are safer, unfermented soy is high in endocrine disruptors, which confuse hormonal and metabolic signaling processes. You can find soybean oil in many processed foods, so it’s important to check ingredient lists for this and other potentially harmful additives.
Do Any Diets Work?
Many diets tout weight loss as their number one selling point, but with so many fads constantly popping up, it can be hard to know what’s effective. Keto and Paleo-based, or other low carb diets, may initially drop weight quickly, but eventually, weight loss plateaus as metabolism slows down in response to this type of food. These diets may work well for some people, but their weight loss effects are limited. They may also limit the number of vitamins and minerals you consume because of their restrictions on certain fruits, vegetables, and legumes.
Juice cleanses, extreme fasting, and diet pills should almost universally be avoided. Any regimen that relies on a starvation technique will slow metabolism and stress the body, which is not helpful for the mental and physical task of healthy weight management. These drastic diets deplete the body of necessary nutrients, leaving the body feeling weaker. Juice contains all the sugar but none of the fiber to help it metabolize slowly, so an exclusive juice diet results in extreme swings in insulin production.
Most people find that focusing their meals and snacks around combinations of high protein, fiber, and beneficial fats keeps them feeling full and supports a healthy weight loss rate. Explains Ken, “Fats do not put on the weight. What puts on the weight is carbs, sugars. That’s where fat comes from.” Organic meat and plant proteins, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, whole milk dairy products, and natural anti-inflammatory fats like olive oil, avocado, and MCT coconut oil can be used in a variety of combinations to create meal options that are filling, delicious, and healthy.
Exercises to Boost Metabolism
Finding ways to add movement to your day helps metabolism and also aids in mental health. Discovering whatever type of exercise is enjoyable to you will help ensure that it becomes more of a habit, so give in to your curiosity and see what interests you. Martial arts, dance, hiking, and skating are some slightly less conventional options that may make the thought of sweating more appealing, and of course, more common things like walking, running, and cycling will get the job done too. Yoga or Pilates can be helpful for both strengthening the body while also fostering flexibility, and almost any exercise you choose will help to lower stress. There are free workout videos on YouTube in nearly every category imaginable, so even if you’re stuck at home, you can still try something new!
C60 Supports Metabolism and Energy Production
C60 is an antioxidant unparalleled in its efficiency at managing oxidative stress, which underpins many health issues that contribute to unnecessary weight gain. “172 times better [as an antioxidant] than vitamin C,” says Ken. C60 targets reactive oxidative species (ROS, or free radicals) and neutralizes them, preventing cellular damage and supporting cells in returning to optimal function. C60 Purple Power does the job of SOD (superoxide dismutase), catalase, and any other antioxidants the body may be missing.1
When cells are no longer inundated with ROS, they are better able to perform their duties, which leads to a host of beneficial effects. Mitochondria return to their normal function, which increases ATP production, essential for cellular and bodily energy. Proper ATP levels support insulin and neurotransmitter production, which is essential to hormone balance and metabolic messaging. While hormonal receptors may be ready and waiting for their respective hormones, if there is not enough ATP present, the hormones may not reach them, resulting in a lowered endocrine function that adversely affects metabolism. Increased ATP also fuels the body, so it is better prepared for exercise.
An increase in cellular function also supports the synthesis of pregnenolone, the precursor to all hormone production. The making of this essential building block utilizes LDL cholesterol, putting it to good use so that it does not become stored and calcified in the arteries. The resulting pregnenolone can then be converted into whichever hormones are needed. Unlike hormone replacement therapy, the body’s own pregnenolone stores are used for the specific hormones needed in exactly which amounts are required, so the result is balancing the hormones, not just an inundation of one hormone by way of pharmaceutical delivery.
In addition, studies have demonstrated that in both human and mouse cell cultures, C60 prevented stem cells from turning into fat cells.2 Because it is such a highly effective antioxidant, C60 may also help increase leptin sensitivity, helpful in reminding the body when it’s full.
C60 Purple Power supports healthy weight management by its ability to lift the oxidative burden, supporting healthy cell function, which in turn promotes optimal energy and hormone levels. Combined with healthy foods and exercise, C60 has proven to promote metabolism and ideal weight.
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information herein and C60 Purple Power products are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Please consult a healthcare professional before starting any new diet or exercise regimen.
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