Prescriptions - July 2016

The Skinny on Weight Loss

Weight Loss headline

Which is better for weight  loss, diet or exercise?

We hear this every day in our center for medical weight loss; “I exercise but I can’t get this extra weight off!” Sadly, despite what those machines and computer programs say, we really burn 4-5 calories a minute during exercise. So after an hour of jogging, cycling, cross fit, or swimming, we have only burned 300 calories on average. It’s a common practice to eat something before exercising for energy or reward yourself after for a job well done. So, at best in the end of the exercise session we are calorie neutral and there is no weight loss benefit. Often the protein bar we consumed had more calories than we burned resulting positive calorie balance and weight gain. So the short answer is yes, exercise is great for a multitude of reasons but is a poor weight loss tool on its own, unless you are training for a triathlon, riding in the Tour de France and exercising 6-7 hours a day.

Diet must change to lose weight and exercise is beneficial if it is done appropriately.
It is essential to understand how many calories you are burning at rest to successfully lose weight. Calorie intake must be less than calories burned and the greater the difference the faster the weight loss. It takes 3500 calories to burn 1 pound of fat.

BMR is at rest so add
your hour of exercise and an extra pound of fat can be burned off per week!
For example:
Basal metabolic rate (BMR) is1500 calories per day
Calorie Intake is 1000 per day
Negative calorie balance is 500 per day.
So 3500/500 = 7 or 1 pound of fat burned in 7 days.

Jonathan L. Sack, M.D. is the owner and medical director of Island Family Medicine and Transformation Medical Weight Loss and MedSpa. His focus is helping patients understand the impact of a healthy weight and optimum fitness on our overall health and keeping patients on track in achieving and sustaining a health-centered lifestyle.

How do I cut carbs?

Cutting carbohydrates is one of the best things you can do when choosing a healthy lifestyle and it’s not as hard as you think! The body uses carbohydrates for energy, and if you don’t burn it off as energy (like doing exercise), it gets stored as fat. If you eat fewer carbs, your body will burn off its fat supply as energy more quickly. But if you eat a lot of carbs, it will be easier to gain weight.

Carbohydrates can be found in bread, cereal, beans, pasta, rice, potatoes, sugar and fruits. They are in many foods, especially processed foods like cookies, crackers and chips. Cutting out all carbs is not the answer to sustainable weight loss. It is better to limit carb intake to under 50 grams a day and choose healthier carbs.

There are easy tactics to reduce daily carbs. When dining out, ask the server to not bring bread to the table. It’s so much easier to refuse it when it’s not on the table. Order chicken grilled and not breaded. Don’t eat the bread on your sandwich, instead turn your sandwich into a salad. Skip the chips and fries and opt for the crunch of a vegetable. Simple changes add up!

Suzanne Hobbs is the co-founder of Fast Fit Body Sculpting. Fast Fit uses light technology to quickly
 and safely target and shrink stubborn fat anywhere on the body.

How do I wrap my head around losing weight?

Most all weight-loss regimes focus solely on nutrition and exercise. In fact, the basic premise of almost all diets is creating a calorie deficit—calories-in verses calories-out. But there’s more to it. Individuals looking to lose weight should start by doing an honest inventory of how and why they eat? Many eat to avoid or sooth uncomfortable emotions, such as loneliness and anger. Instead of being comfortable in stillness, we eat to fill a temporary void in our day or mask boredom. Some eat to keep on excess weight because it protects us from unwanted attention or allows us to stay invisible. Knowing why you eat is necessary insight for reducing triggers and cravings. It helps you understand the deeper meanings behind your eating behaviors, which is an important ingredient in long-term sustainable weight loss.

Lisette Cifaldi, MSW, LMSW is a food addiction specialist and a motivational speaker. She is an advocate for food addiction recovery and research and challenges companies nationwide to increase their bottom line by increasing the cultivation of gratitude in the workplace.

How often should I weigh myself?

Stepping on the scale is a very multi-faceted event!  The inanimate scale can provoke a slew of emotions ranging from frustration and depression to hope and elation.  Is it just a number?  In many respects the “number” that (the scale) glows back at us reveals a lot about our lives.  It asks the questions: “Did I eat the right foods?”  “Did I burn enough calories through exercise?”  “Am I on the right track to feeling better, more energetic and healthier?”  

Weighing yourself every 5 to 7 days is sufficient.  You can be pleasantly surprised at the end of the week when the scale reflects a lower number and you receive the kudos knowing that you made healthy food choices, exercised and drank plenty of water.  Remember to eat for what your body needs, not for what your taste buds want!

With a diversified background as an Ultrasound Technologist, Massage Therapist and Certified Health Coach, Carol Hunter of SunGate Medical Group brings 20 years of experience to the health and wellness industry.  Educating and guiding others to achieve their optimum wellness is her life’s passion!

Are there any foods to help my metabolism?

Make 4 rights: Right foods, right combination, right amount and at the right time will keep your metabolism soaring! I recommend all my clients (without medical contraindication) start their day with 12+ ounces of water. Water will help to rehydrate your system and keep things “flowing” smoothly.  Try to drink half of your body weight in ounces of water every day.

Always Eat Breakfast!  A few great options are: 1) Whole Grain toast with natural peanut butter and half of a banana 2) Veggie omelet with Whole Grain toast and a piece of fruit 3) Organic breakfast cereal or Oatmeal with blueberries/raspberries and almond milk.

For lunch and/or dinner have a dark leafy green salad with your favorite veggies (Fiber!) topped with chicken, lean beef or fish (Proteins!).  Wanting to rev up your metabolism is a good excuse to spice up your life!  Hot peppers stimulate fat and calorie burning so be sure to incorporate some jalapeno and cayenne peppers into your recipes, as well as cinnamon, clove and garlic.    

With a diversified background as an Ultrasound Technologist, Massage Therapist and Certified Health Coach, Carol Hunter of SunGate Medical Group brings 20 years of experience to the health and wellness industry.  Educating and guiding others to achieve their optimum wellness is her life’s passion!

How do I stop sugar cravings?

There are many reasons—both psychological and physiological—why we crave sweet foods. Carbohydrates, including sugar, stimulate the release of serotonin, which gives our bodies a feel-good sensation. While sugar can sometimes satisfy these cravings temporarily, we often overindulge in these high-calorie foods.

If you find yourself craving sugar often, follow these tips:

• Be sure to eat regular meals and snacks that include protein and fiber. Skipping meals increases hunger and can make cravings worse.
• Avoid artificially sweetened drinks if you notice they trigger cravings for you. Although research is ongoing, some studies show artificial sweeteners increasing appetite. 
• Stay hydrated. Drink a glass of water or sip on an unsweetened hot drink. We sometimes confuse cravings with thirst.
• Try fruit instead. Eat a piece of fresh fruit or top baked fruit with a little cinnamon and greek yogurt!
• Take a walk and see if the cravings pass.

Jenny Craft RD,LD,CDE, is a board certified Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator with Beaufort Memorial Hospital’s LifeFit Wellness Center. A resident of Bluffton, she sees patients in both Beaufort and Bluffton.

Do I count calories or fat grams for weight loss?

Attempting to lose weight can make you feel overwhelmed. With all the new fad diets out there, it’s hard to know what will actually work. It is important to lose weight in a healthy and practical way. Fad diets are a quick fix and will not help you make lifelong changes for maintaining a healthy weight. The overall goal is to monitor calorie intake rather than extreme restriction of a macronutrient (carbohydrate, fat, or protein). Any long term weight management plan will focus on a more balanced diet to include all macronutrients.

Here are some tips on how to manage your daily calorie intake while maintaining a balanced diet:

• Choose foods that are nutrient dense. Avoid overly processed foods that have been stripped of their natural, nutritious parts. Aim for whole grains, lean meats, fruits and vegetables.
• We tend to underestimate our caloric intake during the day. Try using a tracking tool like MyFitnessPal to keep yourself accountable.
• Use nutrition labels to determine the serving size and calorie content per serving. Break out those measuring spoons to stick to the right serving size. Portion control is a huge component when it comes to weight loss and weight management.
• Be sure to plate your food for all meals and snacks, including potato chips! Try using smaller plates to help with portion control.

Kassie Nicknadarvich, RD, LD, is a board certified Registered Dietitian with Beaufort Memorial Hospital’s LifeFit Wellness Center. She also has a Certificate of Training in Adult Weight Management through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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