Highs and Lows of Weigh-loss
Why is it so hard to lose weight?
It's Friday and I have not lost an ounce of weight in a week! Annoyed, depressed and driving myself mad! Hang on Jen I hear you say, you are a professional nutritional therapist and a Nutrition Coach to so many people, how come you are getting it so wrong?
Well, I am not, it is just the joys of our biochemistry! There are many sessions with clients that come in and the weight has not changed, or even their metabolic age, body fat muscle mass, yet they know they have made changes for the better, eaten fewer calories, had less treats and yes their motivation and willpower is starting to drop!
Fat Burning - Liver Function
Let me explain what is happening, it's your liver function, as its the major fat burning organ in the body and regulates fat metabolism by a complicated set of biochemical pathways. One the function is it to pump excessive fat out of the body through the bile into the small intestines. If the diet is high in fibre, this unwanted fat will be carried out of the body via the bowel actions. Thus the liver is a remarkable machine for keeping weight under control, being both a fat burning organ and a fat pumping organ.
However in recent months as I have been testing a Ketone diet, so the level of fibre in my diet has reduced recently, I also have levels of pancreatic enzymes and lipase in my system, so the minute I put any pressure on my liver it just stores body fat.
The science bit; if the diet is low in fibre, some of the fats and toxins that have been pumped by the liver into the gut through the bile will recirculate back to the liver. This occurs via the entero-hepatic circulation. The term entero-hepatic circulation describes the recirculation of fluids (consisting mainly of bile acids) from the gut back to the liver. The entero-hepatic circulation is very large, with approximately 95% of the bile acids being reabsorbed from the last section of the small intestine (ileum), into the portal vein to be carried back to the liver. The liver re-circulates these bile acids back into the small intestines and the entire bile pool recycles through the entero-hepatic circulation six to eight times a day. If this recirculated fluid is high in fat and/or toxins, this will contribute to excessive weight..
The other contributory factors to our liver function are medication, stress, as well as the food we eat. I have created this diagram to demonstrate the cycle. Interestingly the more I get stressed about not losing any weight, the more my hormones and liver function keep the weight on, it's a vicious cycle.
Do you often lose weight by Friday and regain it all by Monday?
If so don't panic, it's your liver holding on to the sugars and extra calories from the weekend, you will find that by Wednesday you will feel normal again. This because it takes about 3 days for your liver the complete the cycle and metabolises all the stored glucagon from the weekend treats. If you want to lose weight it's about consistency and thinking big picture, what you eat today and tomorrow will impact what you weigh next week! Not tomorrow morning..
In Summary; My challenge of losing 10lbs in 4 weeks is looking a little impossible at the moment, so the most important thing is can do is to gain control of my blood sugars, eat 100% natural or raw and measure the amount I eat to ensure it is sufficient to keep my energy levels consistent. With my constant desire to lose weight and the mood swings associated, my goal is to be happy with myself and if I drop a few pounds along the way that's great, if not it's not the end of the world as my health is the best it can be...