What foods help with weight loss – By Dr. Holly


There are a number of different reasons for weight gain. From mineral or vitamin deficiency to imbalances in your microbiota to adrenal fatigue to medications to belief systems and a huge number of other issues. AND 70% of obese people DO NOT have diabetes. Further, diabetes can be caused by a wide number of issues from adrenal, gut, liver dysfunction to infections…so keep that in mind. So let’s just focus on healthy weight management in this article.

Almost any diet or supplement or protein drink or other program can claim success.  In addition, whenever people start looking at their weight and health they usually stop eating the problem foods:

  • fast foods
  • deep fried foods
  • processed foods
  • microwaved foods
  • GMO foods
  • GMO grains or grains sprayed with Roundup

For many people, the simple elimination of these problem foods will cause a drop in weight, regardless of the program, supplement or diet shake or protein they engage in.

Having said all that, there are a variety of foods that can help with weight loss. Let’s look at a few of them and figure out why they work for some of the people, some of the time:

Fats that burn / break down fats.  Good healthy fats break down fats. Your body knows that and that is why the liver uses some of the cholesterol to make bile – a fat that breaks down fats. The bile gets stored in the gallbladder and is then released into the intestine when we eats fats. This healthy fat breaks down fats so that we can absorb the good healthy fats that are used in a variety of ways throughout our body – including breaking down fat cells.

  • In general these are good healthy fats:
    • Eggs
    • Avocados
    • Fish
    • Coconut oil
    • Nuts
    • Seeds

There are many kinds of omega 3 fatty acids in our diet and in our bodies, but the three most common groups are the ALAs (short chain omega 3) and the DHAs and EPAs (long chain) that we can make from ALAs. EPAs and DHAs are found in:

  • ALA  – a particular type of fat that is required by the body. Plants and fish usually do most of the conversion to ALAs for us:
    • Chia seeds
    • Flaxseeds
    • Hemp seeds
    • Pumpkin seeds
    • Walnuts
  • CLA – another kind of fatty acid – can be either a CIS or a Trans – the trans fats are unhealthy, but the CIS are very important to our health especially for our gut & microbiota:
    • beef & dairy when grown and fed naturally
    • Eggs
    • Yogurt
    • Cheese
  • EPA/DHA:
    • Fish
      • Cold water fatty fish: salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, tuna
      • Fresh water fish: catfish, tiapia
    • Vegetables
      • Seaweed
    • Fortified foods
      • Milk, yogurt, eggs
    • Nuts/seeds
      • Flaxseeds,
      • Walnuts

But don’t forget the medium fatty acids that foods like coconut oil provide us with – they are also very helpful.

High protein consume more energy and thus help us regulate weight

  • Fish:
    • Salmon
    • Sardines
    • Tuna
  • Lentils
    • Chickpeas
  • Meat:
    • Beef
    • Chicken
    • Pork
  • Poultry
    • Turkey

Foods that provoke an increased metabolism

  • Spices:
    • Black pepper
    • Cayenne chilles
    • Habaneros
    • Jalapenos
    • Peppers in general also help us metabolize and utilize many nutrients more efficiently and effectively

Foods with chemical compounds that provokes weight loss:

  • Drinks:
    • Green tea (ECGCs – but it has to be a high quality good green tea – there are over 600 varieties with a variety of levels & types of ECGCs)
  • Fruit:
    • Lemons
    • Mandarins
    • Mangoes
  • Spices:
    • Chillies
    • Garlic
    • Onions

High fiber foods that regulate blood glucose uptake & create a sense of fullness

  • Fruit:
    • Blackberries
    • Blueberries
    • Raspberries
    • Strawberries
  • Grains – make sure your grains are NON-GMO and not sprayed with RoundUp:
    • Oatmeal
    • Oats
    • Whole grain bread
    • Rice
  • Vegetables:
    • Broccoli
    • Cauliflower

Probiotic foods can also help with weight regulation: we now know that the microbiota in your gut can effect your thoughts, emotions and behavior AND your weight:

  • Dairy based:
    • Kefir
    • Yogurt (Greek yogurt and without fruit)
  • Drinks:
    • Kombuccha – make your own
  • Fermented foods:
    • Saurkraut
    • Kimchi
  • Vegetables:
    • Cabbage
    • Broccoli
  • Any pickled foods – again make your own

Other issues may be the problem, for instance,

  • If the weight gain is due to Adrenal dysufnciton (hyper or hypo) then specific food groups for the adrenals are required.
  • If there is immune dysfunction &/or inflammation in the gut then other foods would be required.
  • If the liver is overloaded with toxins or unhealthy fats (non alcoholic fatty liver dysfunction) then other foods are required.
  • so while the above foods may be beneficial, you may have specific needs to help regulate your weight

All of the above identified foods can be integrated into your every day diet. In addition, to the direct means of helping weight management – they also help because of a number of other compounds like alkaloids, polyphenols, bioflavonoids, etc.  All we have to do is go back to simple, old fashioned eating REAL food, herbs and spices. The old saying ‘the more man gets involved with nature the more detrimental it is’ has a huge ring when it comes to what we ingest.

Start your day with protein also is known to increase your metabolism by 12- 15%. On the other hand, some people need to start the day with ‘steel cut oats’ to clean out their gut. Of course, starting your day with hot water and lemon, unpasteurized honey and Himalayan salt will work wonders for another group of people.  Find a health practitioner who can help determine what is the best method for you…

Here’s to your health!

For more information, contact: holly@choicesunlimited.ca

Dr. Holly is a naturopathic doctor that holds a PhD in Psychology and Biochemistry, specializing in balancing mind, body and energy of the system.

Disclaimer: This article provides general information only and is not a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or other health care practitioner.

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