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Stress

Stress and hormones

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Chronic stress is toxic for our body and brain, we ask so much of our body when we don´t treat it the right way. How do we want it to function properly and to keep us healthy when we keep giving it toxins? From the food we eat, lack of sleep, lack of exercise and excessive amounts of stress.

I´ve mentioned before that chronic stress has a negative impact on our body and health, you can think about this type of stress as a toxin for your body and brain. Our body needs to be in balance, all hormones and system needs to be in sync if we want it to be at its best so that we can perform at our best. Chronic stress takes all hormones and systems of our body out of balance, it affects negatively the quality and quantity of sleep, it takes our gut out of balance, it can increase inflammation.

School and jobs can be really stressful, especially if you are bullied, if your classmates make fun of you, if your teachers don´t care about what´s happening and it´s worse when they don´t like your project and your work in general. We all spend too much time worrying, if we think about we all have a never ending list of things we can be worried about and they all makes us feel anxious and this leads to chronic stress.

We live in a very stressful world, we go through a lot of stressful situation during the day the problem is that this stressful situations are not life threatening, they are created by worries and anxiety, our mind is great at creating a whole scenario for every situation always presenting the worst outcome, the most negative results we can get and this triggers the stress response.

You may know by now that stress triggers a hormone called cortisol, it raises adrenaline when you have high levels of stress you have high levels of cortisol, when cortisol is elevated some systems stop working and other hormones get out of sync, it raises blood sugar, this how your body is supposed to react under stress to keep you alive.

One of the hormones that get out of sync is oxytocin. When cortisol is high oxytocin is low, oxytocin is the love hormone, it controls our behavior and interaction with other people. This may be one of the causes of relationship issues.

Lowering stress will not only improve your health, it may also improve your relationships so here are some steps you can take today to lower stress:

1.- Do not believe all negative thoughts that come to mind. Usually we tend to focus on the negative and think about the worse scenario so instead of focusing on the negative stay on the present moment and see the situation from a different perspective. Ask yourself what can go right and how can you achieve that positive outcome?

2.- Practice breathing exercises like mindful breathing and when you are under a stressful situation stop for a moment and take some deep breathes.

3.- Stop worrying about everything.

How you respond during stressful situations play a huge role on how they will impact you, having a more optimism attitude and perspective is one way to keep stress low. Being in the present moment also helps it keeps you concentrated on reality on what´s really happening and avoid thinking about the future in a negative way. It´s about what´s really happening right now and what can you do to get a positive result. This is so hard to do because we´ve been surrounded by negativity so many years and we´ve let our mind take control, we´ve let our mind and body react instead of stopping and taking some time to breathe so that we are able to think consciously and make a better decision which lower stress in that moment and give you better results in the long run.

Let me know by leaving a comment on Facebook and Twitter if you have a long list of worries and if you let your mind react when you are under stress.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Food

Food and hormones: Ghrelin

10-BEST DIET
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In the past nutrition post with talked about leptin and how this hormone is one of the reasons why is hard for you to lose fat and stay lean because you are not satisfied and you feel hungry. In today’s post will talk about another important hormone that works together with leptin, this hormone is called ghrelin.

Ghrelin is the hormone that increases appetite, it tells us when we´re hungry and we need to eat which is the contrary of what leptin does. To keep it simple ghrelin is the hormone that makes us eat. This hormone can also be triggered by several factors and if we triggered it the wrong way it will cause so many problems and make it harder for us to lose weight and stay lean.

Some of our unhealthy habits are triggering this hormone the wrong way and one of them is lack of sleep or poor quality sleep which increases ghrelin and this increases our appetite throughout the day and make us feel hungry.

Studies show that when we follow a weight loss program and reduce calories, ghrelin increases as a response of our body to protect us from starvation, the lower we go in calories the high this hormone goes and the longer we stay with the diet the higher this hormone goes.

So if ghrelin increases and leptin decreases it´s the best way to gain weight and it´s so hard to lose weight and stay lean, we need to keep ghrelin low and leptin high so that our brain gets the right message. We don´t feel hungry all day long and we know when it´s enough at every meal. There are some steps we can take to make this happens which are:

1.- Get enough good quality sleep every night, at least 6 hours per night and make those 6 hours of good quality.

2.- Follow a high fat, moderate protein, low carbohydrate nutrition program at least for a period of time to improve insulin and which also helps to keep appetite more in control.

3.- Follow some type of intermittent fasting having 2 meals per day which also helps lower insulin which helps us lose fat and keep hormones more balanced.

As we´ve seen there are several things that come into play when we talk about getting in amazing shape and sustain it, it´s more about hormones, macronutrients and how everything works together. It´s not only about following a very extreme and restrictive diet low in calories, and just to lose weight fast which will cause more harm to our body, it´s about understanding how things work and doing the right things to be able to sustain our results.

Our body is a complex machine there are different systems and hormone working together and they need to work in harmony to the same goal not only to make our fat loss journey easier but for health reasons.

As we´ve seen, leptin and ghrelin are 2 important hormones that need to be working the right way if we want to lose fat and stay lean and one of the most important fitness principles that trigger them is sleep. If we don´t get high quality sleep every night this 2 hormones won´t be working properly and we have the recipe for weight gain. This is why it´s important to develop good healthy habits for the 5 principles of fitness not only to lose fat and maintain a great physique but for health reasons.

It would so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Food

Food and hormones: Leptin

10-BEST DIET
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73

Have you ever heard about leptin? Have you tried the leptin diet? if your answer is no then continue reading to learn about this hormone and if your answer was yes, also continue reading, you may learn something new.

Most traditional or commercial weight loss programs focus on calories, they make us follow diets too low in calories and the workouts are based on cardio or circuit training to lose as much weight as possible but when we stop following the program we start gaining all the weight back and the reason is simple, hormones and metabolism.

Our goal is to help you get an amazing physique and sustain it effortless and to do that we need to focus on what matters which is increasing metabolism and managing our hormones in a good way to get the best results and to be healthy, leptin is one of those hormones.

Leptin is the satiety hormone and it´s job is to tell us when we´ve eaten enough and we need to stop. To keep it simple leptin tell us when to stop eating because we´re full. This hormone can be triggered by several factors and if we triggered it the wrong way by doing the wrong things then it won´t be doing its job effectively and if we add to this that some of our unhealthy habits are causing problems  like lack or poor quality sleep, which reduces leptin which is why we are hungry and have more cravings during the day and this is one of the short term effects of poor sleep.

When leptin is low it won´t send the message to our brain that we are full and we need to stop eating, on the contrary we will eat more in each meal and we´ll feel hungry throughout the day this is why weight gain is related to lack of sleep.

Fat cells increase leptin so the more fat we have the higher this hormone will be.

As with insulin there´s something called leptin resistance which is when our body produces too much leptin in this case the fat cells when we are obese or overweight and it gets to a point where the receptors block all that leptin so it can´t do its job and instead of getting signals that we are satisfied we feel hungry.

So as you can see, weight loss is not as simple as eat less and move more, there are other things that come into play, what we can do to improve leptin, one simple step is start by getting enough high quality sleep every night, this is a simple tool that gives a lot of benefits and makes everything easier.

If you are overweight the best thing you can do is reduce insulin, we´ve talked about insulin in other posts and by improving insulin is easier to burn fat, when you start losing weight and getting rid of that excess fat, leptin also start to lower, you can do this by trying some type of intermittent fasting like limiting your meals to 2 meals per day in an 8 hour window, another way is by reducing carbohydrates and follow a low carbohydrate, moderate and high fat diet like ketogenic for a period of time. Exercise also helps lower insulin specially HIIT.

What I recommend if your nutrition program is based on unhealthy foods, you´ll need to eliminate those unhealthy foods and focus on eating meals cooked with whole fresh ingredients and try intermittent fasting, go for 2 meals a day you can have breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. Do this for 4 to 6 weeks and see the results and how you feel.

It would so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam