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Weight loss wisdom

If you are hoping to lose weight this year, start by taking a closer look at controlling lifestyle factors. Stress, bad eating habits and inactivity all cause our bodies to pack on the pounds-and keep them there. We spoke with Dr. Livia Lee, ND, at our Portland store about products from Pharmaca that can help maximize your efforts.

Start with a clean slate

Dr. Lee recommends starting any weight-loss regimen with a detoxifying program, like Renew Life's Diet Start Cleanse. "In two weeks it will increase your lean body mass, get rid of excess fat and eliminate toxins," says Dr. Lee. "It's a really great product." Pair the cleanse with a promise to yourself to eat processed and sugary foods only sparingly, and you'll allow your body to rebalance itself.

Boost your metabolism

"Don't go into starvation mode," says Dr. Lee. "The weight will come off but it will just come right back on." Instead, she recommends eating smaller meals four to five times per day to keep blood sugar levels consistent, and adding a supplement like New Chapter's Diet & Energy. "It's a blend of thermogenic herbs, which means it creates heat and burns calories," says Dr. Lee. This in turn increases metabolism and keeps blood sugar level, enhancing weight-loss efforts.

Support your adrenal glands

"When our adrenal glands are stressed, we pump out a lot of cortisols, hormones that keep fat, especially abdominal fat, in the body," says Dr. Lee. "It's really hard to encourage the body to release that fat once it's stored." She recommends helping boost the work of the adrenals with a nutritional supplement like Pure Encapsulations ADR Formula. With extracts of ginseng and eleuthero, Dr. Lee says it's a fantastic way to get the adrenals back in line.

Get moving

Exercise, even in small doses, will always be an important factor in weight loss. "I would encourage people to start walking every day," says Dr. Lee. "It will lower your cortisol levels, and your body will be more likely to let go of the weight."

Eat (and drink) wisely

On the diet front, Dr. Lee recommends cutting out empty calories from products like soda, but also suggests reducing alcohol consumption. "When you drink two to three beers a night, you're adding 600 calories to your daily intake, so stopping that makes a huge difference," she says. Replace those beers with a healthy, low calorie (and delicious) drink like GT's Kombucha, and you can drop up to a pound a week.

"Our fast-paced lifestyle also means we don't take the time to cook well for ourselves, we go for the quick fix," says Dr. Lee, citing processed and high-sugar foods as a culprit in packing on the weight. Try to plan meals in advance so you can avoid eating after 7 p.m., she adds. "People who eat right before bed tend to wake up hungry, and that starts a really mean cycle." Instead, allow your body a chance to rest and relax after a job well done.

Come to Pharmaca today for customized advice on getting serious about your weight-loss and other health resolutions.

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