Weight loss is such a personal journey and whether you want to lose a few pounds to increase your athletic performance or lose 20lbs to finally get you back on a fitness path that prolongs yourwellbeing.
Here’s some further secrets to weight loss that is relevant to everyone trying to reach their health and wellbeing goals.
SECRET 4: AVOID OXIDATIVE STRESS:
Like an apple turns brown when exposed to air, our cells can rust when we breathe due to oxidative stress, a process caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage or oxidise cells throughout the body in a process called oxidative stress. Over time, oxidative stress can leave our cells and tissues unable to function properly. According to anti-aging specialist Dr. Catherine Waller, this means that free radicals can have serious consequences for our health. They damage tissue, they damage our DNA, they damage our cell membrane, DrWaller says.They’re the underpinnings of almost all of our chronic diseases.
Free radicals are a by-product of energy consumption in our mitochondria, the factories that produce energy in each of our cells. As we breathe, we can’t help but make some free radicals, but many other factors in your lifestyle and environment can also contribute to their production, like:
- Eating too many calories, sugars and/or refined carbohydrates. When we eat more, our mitochondria release more “exhaust” creating higher levels of free radicals as they burn fuel from food for energy.
- Exercising too much or too little. Exercise is an important part of any healthy lifestyle, but too much can increase oxidative stress in our bodies. In general, more than 60 minutes per day is considered excessive, while less than 30 minutes five times a week is not enough.
- Excessive alcohol consumption. Drinking alcohol increases your levels of cytokines, inflammatory molecules that are linked to oxidative stress.
- Exposure to tobacco smoke. Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 toxic chemicals that lead to oxidative stress.
- Exposure to air pollutants. Allergens and industrial pollution increase oxidation in our bodies.
- Excessive stress. Stress and the stress hormone cortisol increase inflammation, which further increases free radical production. Ionising radiation. Exposure to the sun, x-rays, radon, hair dryers, mobile phone, airplanes, electric blankets and waterbed heaters can contribute to oxidative stress.
- Eating charbroiled foods. When we BBQ and char the food, we create hydrocarbons, which can contribute to oxidative stress.
- Exposure to fungal toxins. Environmental moulds (like those in bathrooms and basements) and internal moulds and fungi (those related to your gut) can produce toxins that increase oxidative stress.
- Poor liver and gut detoxification. When the liver becomes overwhelmed with toxins from food (like when you eat too much sugar) or the environment (like exposure to pesticides or mercury), it becomes inflamed and produces more free radicals.
- Chronic infections. Dental infections and chlamydia can cause hidden infections that contribute to oxidative stress.
- Lack of sleep. Sleep deprivation increases oxidation.
Preventing oxidative stress can begin by avoiding the causes of free radicals above. You can also prevent free radical formation and control oxidative stress by:
- Improving your breathing and oxygenation as this will help your body flush out toxins, free radicals and inflammatory molecules.
- Eating foods that reduce oxidation (take a look at the 100 Star Foods List). Many foods contain antioxidants (like vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and polyphenols) that are major factors in protecting us from free radical damage. To avoid oxidative stress and inflammation, it’s important to eat a diet full of many different colourful fruits and vegetables that contain these antioxidants. A nutrient-poor, calorie-rich, high glycemic, antioxidant-deficient diet should be avoided.
Sleep hygiene is a set of habits you have around sleep. You can’t just sit in bed watching your favourite program while drinking a big cup of coffee one minute and expect to nod off the next… or even in the next hour. You need to set up an environment to facilitate sleeping. You need to chase sleep.
Here is a list of good sleep hygiene practices.
- Don’t consume caffeine, cigarettes, and other stimulants (such as decongestants) late in the day. Many folks find that any caffeine after noon is a problem. 2. Don’t drink alcohol in the evening. It sedates you at first, but then screws up your sleep rhythm, leading to worse sleep.
- Keep a regular sleep schedule. Go to bed and get up at roughly the same time. 4. Exercise regularly, but not too close to bedtime. Save the tough, adrenaline-pumping workouts for earlier in the day.
- If you do nap, don’t do it for too long or too late in the afternoon.
- Actively address relaxation — don’t just expect it to happen. Build relaxation practices into your day.
You can strength train closer to bedtime without affecting your sleep, but after any type of metabolic training (circuit, soccer, basketball, intervals, or general aerobics) you need to give yourself 4-6 hours to unwind.
Other practices recommended:
- Turn off your computer, TV, cell phones, and any other devices with a screen at least an hour before bed.
- Don’t watch TV in bed. (FYI: TV kills your love life too.)
- Get up at the same time every day (including weekends).
- Take a warm bath before you go to bed.
- Keep your home a degree or two cooler at night.
- Keep your room really dark, or use a sleep mask to block out any light. You think these recommendations are too restrictive and crazy? With a few exceptions (such as regular bathing), nearly all of these habits happened normally as a part of life up until about 100 years ago.
Cellular nutrition acts at the cellular level and offers all the essential nutrients that the body needs in order to function properly. As we age, our body cells get covered with toxins every single day, and our metabolism slows down which makes it very hard for the body to absorb all the essential nutrients from foods, in order for the body to function properly and maintain an optimal weight and health. Cellular nutrition helps to clean the body cells of toxins, and to keep them active in order for the body to be able to absorb all the essential nutrients from foods, supplements and vitamins.
Put all the 6 secrets to weight loss into practice and after practising these secrets so they become habit, you will undoubtedly reap the rewards.