This is the final one of a series of posts on Balancing Hormones and Getting Lean.
At the end of the series, you will be given the practical steps that encompass all 6 major players to balancing hormones and getting lean.
In my last article, The #1 Secret To Balancing Hormones And Getting Lean I shared with you how getting lean requires good hormonal balance.
Gone are the endless days of the eat less and exercise more strategy. While eating less and exercising more does have its place in fat loss, it’s designed to be a tool to incorporate into your long-term health and wellness strategy.
So, to get lean in a healthy way, there are 6 major areas to balance and make that goal happen – I’ve already outlined the first of the 6 in this post.
The other 5 are: A Hormone Balancing Diet; Safe and Easy Detox; Restorative Sleep; Stress Management; and Proper Exercise/Movement.
Without going into great depth of all 5 of these areas, instead, I would like to focus in on the diet, detox, and sleep, and leave stress and exercise for another blog post.
I will wrap this post up in a nice Xmas bow and end with an easy to follow Fit ‘n Healthy Daily Routine that covers all these 6 Major Players to Balancing Hormones and Getting Lean.
11 Hormones Responsible For Getting Lean And Building Sexy Muscle
There are 11 hormones responsible for getting lean and building muscle.
These Hormones are:
1. Insulin – The Fat Storer
2. Glucagon – The Fat Burner
3. Ghrelin – The Hunger Hormone
4, Leptin – The Fuel Gauge
5. Thyroid Hormone – The Metabolic Manager
6. Cortisol – The Stress Hormone
7. Adiponectin – The Satiety Hormone
8. Human Growth Hormone (HGH) – The Fountain of Youth
9. Estrogen – The Feminizer
10. Progesterone – The Partner of Estrogen
11. Testosterone – The Body Sculptor
Therefore, creating a Diet and Lifestyle Plan that balances these 11 hormones would be a good, sound strategy to getting and staying Fit ‘n Healthy.
Let’s start with Diet.
Hormone Balancing Diet
Out of all the 11 hormones listed above, balancing Insulin and Glucagon will give you the fastest results and simplest solution to getting lean and building sexy muscle – long term.
A good start to balancing Insulin and Glucagon is consuming a diet rich in high-quality protein and omega 3 fats while swapping highly processed, high glycemic carbohydrates with high fibrous, low glycemic ones.
For more details on this way of eating, check out my Slim, Strong, and Sexy Diet Plan.
Are You 15 + Pounds Overweight?
If you are struggling with 15 + pounds to lose, you will most likely need to start by balancing Leptin and Ghrelin. Take the Leptin Resistance Quiz and fix it here.
One other consideration, when it comes to a Hormone Balancing Diet, is eating just enough. This means NOT overeating. Overeating is another way insulin rises independently of a carefully balanced diet.
A good trick to help you NOT overeat is to ensure you’re well hydrated. Sometimes, you may feel hungry when in fact, you’re actually thirsty. This is why I recommend my clients to start their day with 1 litre of filtered water and drink the rest of your required water intake between meals and not to close to bedtime.
A good rule of thumb is 1 litre of water for every 50 lbs of body weight.
Safe And Easy Detox
Toxicity is of much greater concern now than ever before. We are exposed to many new and stronger chemicals, many of which we place on our skin and consume in our foods every day.
And with new threats, like genetically modified foods and an excessive amount of EMF exposure, we need to be even more diligent to clean ourselves out.
For these reasons, getting lean, feeling strong and reaching peak performance needs to include a solid, safe and easy detox.
Simply put, excess toxins cause havoc on your hormones. Your liver, kidney, lung, and to some extent, your gut are the organs that play the biggest part in getting you lean.
These are your primary organs that keep your insides, clean. If any one or more of these ‘organs of elimination’ are sluggish, then your ability to burn fat is diminished as well.
‘When you get cleaner, your body will get leaner’
This is a direct quote from fitness and nutritional expert Shawn Stevenson of The Model Health Show.
“One of the ways excess toxicity leads to weight gain is through inflammation. Just think of how Estrogen Dominance plays a role in being overweight? In fact, some recent research points to the inability of our bodies to burn fat as fuel even when on a Ketogenic Diet.”
Mike Mutzel, fitness and nutrition expert and author of The Belly Fat Effect, does a great job explaining how important going on a good detox is essential before going on a fat burning diet.
He sums it up by saying, “constipation is common with ketosis and can kick you out of ketosis. Constipation can also cause the recirculation of nasty chemicals, negatively impacting your liver. Do a detox before going on a ketogenic style diet. Clean house.”
I fully agree. Another factor to consider when your body starts to burn body fat is that toxins are being released into your bloodstream. Your liver, kidneys and gut go to work trying to get these out. If anyone of these ‘fat burning’ organs are sluggish, then you feel crappy!
Doing a safe and easy detox alongside a solid weight loss plan is essential.
Are your ‘fat burning’ organs clean enough?
Go here and find out:
Detox is actually quite simple.
First and foremost, start by eliminating as many Sources of Toxicity as you can. This is exactly how I begin the detox process with all my clients – by handing them my Sources of Toxicity Checklist with Simple Solutions on How to Eliminate Them.
To assist your kidneys, start your day with 1 litre of filtered water with added freshly squeezed lemon juice and a pinch of unrefined salt.
Do this BEFORE or along with your morning organic coffee or organic green tea. Always drink your water away from meals. Drink nettle tea during the day also to help with kidney function.
Additionally, to support the gut with having 1-3 good sized bowel movements per day, incorporate non-starchy, fibrous carbs (just think of above ground vegetables like kale, radishes, peppers (all colors), broccoli, and celery). Remember to save your starchy carbs for your evening meal (think of below the ground veggies or properly prepared grains, beans or legumes). Drink peppermint tea!
Enjoying little-fermented foods prior to your evening meal will also aid in proper bowel movements along with about 300 mg of magnesium. I like magnesium glycinate.
For your liver, eat Liver Friendly Foods like broccoli, broccoli sprouts, artichokes, beets, onions, garlic, and incorporate lemons and limes into your meals. Drink dandelion tea.
Practice deep breathing to support lung function. I recommend performing 5 deep belly breaths in the AM and again in the PM, being careful to keep the shoulders down and breath from your belly.
To take it a step further, go on a safe and easy detox. The one that I perform regularly and get great results is using a method called Biotherapeutic Drainage.
Burn fat, get smart, and heal your body while you sleep! This is by far the ‘lazy persons way’ to cut fat, build lean muscle tissue and set up the stage for peak performance!
You heard right! A solid nights sleep is a great way to burn fat!
Did you know sleep is the only time your brain detoxifies? This is also the time you repair and regenerate from the day’s activities?
Just think about those days when you’ve had the best sleep – you feel pretty remarkable don’t you?
I always liken a good nights sleep to going the spa. That’s exactly how I feel when I’ve had the best sleep ever.
It’s one of the secrets to fat loss, and much has to do with keeping Leptin and Grehlin in balance, along with Insulin and Adiponectin, with a subsequent increase in Human Growth Hormone and Testosterone.
Having a good night’s sleep is essential in getting these hormones in balance.
What A Normal Sleep Cycle Looks Like
Starting at about 6 am, you get a surge of Cortisol. This wakes up your brain and body. Soon after (within 2 hours), Ghrelin rises signalling you to eat along with Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide (VIP) signalling you to ‘poop’.
At around 9 am or 10 am your sex hormones rise (which is a good time to enjoy sex). This can help reset your circadian rhythms if you are having troubles sleeping at night.
Sometime around sunset, your hormone Leptin gets released from your fat stores. If your circadian rhythm is in sync and leptin is able to do its job properly, leptin can actually shift your body into burning fat, suppress your appetite and control any late night food cravings. This continues until bedtime along with another hormone, adiponectin.
Snacking after dinner and before bedtime stops leptin and adiponectin from doing its job. This leads to a complete halt to the magic of burning fat while you sleep.
Assuming you haven’t been dosing yourself with artificial light (computers, tv, cell phones), melatonin gets released at 10 pm. At around midnight, melatonin peaks allowing leptin to enter into the hypothalamus. This is super important from a fat burning perspective because if this all happens, thyroid gets the signal to be upregulated.
Next, your mitochondria begin to produce heat (as your core temperature drops). A proper sleep cycle allows your mitochondria to burn fat for heat while you sleep.
Do you see how obesity can be linked to chronic lack of sleep?
Another great advantage of melatonin peaking at midnight is the surge in prolactin. This is an incredibly important hormone as it promotes the release of Human Growth Hormone (HGH).
According to NIH research cited in the book, Lights Out, 6 hours of prolactin production in the dark is the minimum necessary to maintain immune function like T-cell and beneficial killer-cell production.
But you can’t get 6 hours of prolactin secretion on 6 hours of sleep a night; it takes at least 3.5 hours of melatonin secretion before your body even makes prolactin. That’s 9.5 hours of needed sleep IN THE WINTER MONTHS (7 hours in the summer), every night, for proper immune function.
The connection is clear. Scale back on too much gym time and unnecessary calorie counting. There is a MUCH easier way to slim down and get Fit ‘n Healthy – enjoy a restful nights sleep!
Simple Solutions For A Restful Sleep
- 10 hours before bed – no more caffeine
- 3 hours before bed – no more food
- 2 hours before bed – no more work
- 1 hour before bed – no more screen time (TV, computers, phones)
Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips on 3 of the 6 Major Players to Balancing Hormones and Getting Lean. I promise to get the other 3 out to you sometime soon.
As an XMAS GIFT TO YOU, I want to leave you with my easy to follow Fit ‘n Healthy Daily Routine that covers all these 6 Major Players to Balancing Hormones and Getting Lean.
FIT ‘N HEALTHY DAILY ROUTINE
GET FIT ‘N HEALTHY WITH THESE 4 STEPS:
STEP: 1 MORNING ROUTINE
- Drink 1 litre towards your required amount of filtered water. Drink the rest between meals and not too close to bedtime. BENEFITS: Aids in detox. Rehydrates for easy fat loss. Recharges energy. Your required amount of water for the day is ___ litres of filtered water per day. Always away from meals.
- Get outside within 30 minutes of waking for 2-5 minutes and let the natural sunlight enter your eyes. Look about 15 degrees away from the sun. If the sun is not up yet, then look in that direction. This sets the stage for proper Circadian rhythm (best sleep, best digestion, best mood).
STEP 2: DIET
- Make sure your breakfast has ______g total protein and 1-2 tbsps of extra fat (ideally from coconut oil, grass-fed butter or fat from your pasture-raised meat) with some non-starchy fibrous carbohydrates. See ‘The Fit n Healthy Diet – Create your healthy meals in 4 simple steps’ handout for sources. Use as your new template to make your meals. Breakfast ideas include: Eggs and bacon or leftover meat from last night’s dinner, plus a cup of lightly cooked green leafy veggies with or without extra above ground, colorful veggies OR a smoothie: Grass-fed Protein Powder (to yield 25 grams) plus 1/2 cup of coconut milk or coconut kefir, plus 1-2 cups of dark leafy greens, plus a handful of seasonal berries, plus 1 tbsp of sprouted seeds. Blend. You know you’ve eaten enough when you can wait for 4-5 hours before lunchtime. If you can’t, you need to eat more fat. CHEW YOUR SMOOTHIE OR FOOD VERY WELL!
- LIMIT CARBS TO ______ GRAMS FOR THE DAY IF YOU ARE OVERWEIGHT BY MORE THAN 15 LBS. IF YOU ARE ACTIVE, YOU CAN UP YOUR CARBS BUT KEEP BETWEEN 100-150 GRAMS. WHEN YOU ARE AT A NORMAL WEIGHT, BEST TO KEEP CARBS AROUND 100-150 GRAMS DEPENDING ON YOUR ACTIVITY LEVEL AND AGE.
- ACTIVITY LEVEL AND CARBS: CYCLE YOUR CARBS DEPENDING ON ACTIVITY LEVEL (EM-EM PLUS EL-EL)
EM = Exercise More
EM = Eat More
EL = Exercise Less
EL = Eat Less
- For those weight training: CONSUME 0.7 GRAMS OF PROTEIN PER POUND OF BODY WEIGHT (in divided doses). This will keep you in a healthy ‘nitrogen’ balance for optimal regeneration and repair. ONLY for those who perform some type of ‘strength training’ exercise for 20 minutes 2-3 times a week.
For example, if your ideal weight is 160 lbs, you would consume 110 grams of protein in a day. A good example would be 55 grams of protein at breakfast, 35 grams of protein at lunch, and 20 grams of protein at dinner.
Your daily protein requirements are _____ g per day.
Breakfast: __________ grams
Lunch: __________ grams
Dinner: __________ grams
- For those NOT weight training: CONSUME 0.55 GRAMS OF PROTEIN PER POUND OF BODY WEIGHT (in divided doses). This will keep you in a healthy ‘nitrogen’ balance for optimal regeneration and repair. Once you begin strength training (only when you are leptin sensitive), then you can up your protein to 0.7 grams per pound of body weight.
Using the same example: if your ideal weight is 160 lbs, you would consume 88 grams of protein in a day. A good example would be 45 grams of protein at breakfast, 25 grams of protein at lunch, and 20 grams of protein at dinner.
Your daily protein requirements are _____ g per day.
Breakfast: __________ grams
Lunch: __________ grams
Dinner: __________ grams
- EAT THE MOST FOOD IN THE MORNING WITH DECREASING AMOUNTS AS THE DAY GOES ON.
- SAVE YOUR ‘STARCHY’ CARBOHYDRATES FOR YOUR DINNER MEAL. Starchy carbohydrates can help ensure a better, quality sleep (which is why we save them for the evening meal). See The Fit ‘n Healthy Plan, STEP 2: Choose your carbohydrates. Always with your protein and fat.
- CONSUME 1-2 TBSP OF ADDED FATS TO EACH OF YOUR 3 MEALS OF THE DAY. Add coconut oil to your morning organic coffee or tea, or eat 1 tbsp of it. Your best fats are coconut oil, MCT oil, pastured butter, heavy cream, red palm oil, ghee. Avocado and olives are good too. Limit nuts and seeds (exception: use when on a hormone balancing protocol)
- EAT PREBIOTIC, PROBIOTIC, AND FOODS RICH IN POLYPHENOLS. Part of becoming leptin sensitive is healing the gut. Prebiotic, probiotic, and foods rich in polyphenols nourish your gut. This, in turn, lowers inflammation and fixes leptin signalling. See The Fit ‘n Healthy Plan, STEP 4: Choose your extras.
- EAT 3 MEALS A DAY INITIALLY, BUT AS YOUR HUNGER AND CRAVINGS FADE, YOU CAN ADAPT TO EATING 2 TIMES A DAY, IF YOU LIKE.
- STOP EATING 4-5 HOURS BEFORE BEDTIME IF YOU ARE 15 LBS PLUS OVERWEIGHT. OTHERWISE, STOP 3 HOURS BEFORE BEDTIME.
- SNACKING IS NOT RECOMMENDED. This completely stresses the liver’s metabolism. Your liver needs to relearn how to use gluconeogenesis when you are asleep and awake. Snacking destroys the timing and circadian clocks that work in unison with leptin.
STEP 3: LIFESTYLE
- GET OUTSIDE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN. Spending time outside (sunglass free) keeps your Circadian Rhythm in check. This helps with the entire hormonal cascade and leptin to work properly. Getting outside and in nature is an excellent way to balance stress. Strive for 20 minutes in the morning and 20-30 minutes in the afternoon. Ideally, go for an easy walk after dinner. This helps with good digestion, fat loss and best sleep.
- MOVE. Move as much as you can during the day. Try not to sit for more than 2 hours. READ YOUR BODY. Rest when you need. Move when you can. If you have an office job, invest in a standing desk.
- WITHIN 1 HOUR OF SUNSET, MAKE YOUR SURROUNDINGS AS DARK AS POSSIBLE. See ‘Tips for Optimal Sleep’ handout.
- ELIMINATE AS MANY SOURCES OF TOXICITY AS YOU CAN. See ‘Sources of Toxicity Checklist with Simple Solutions’ handout. An over toxic body is a body that is in constant inflammation. Inflammation is what drives excess body fat. You must do everything you can to reduce inflammation. Not only do we need to eat ‘clean’, we need to live ‘clean’.
- LEARN TO MANAGE STRESS. A lifestyle with too many demands, time pressures, without enough ‘down time’ and rest, put our hormones out of balance, no matter what diet or movement plan we are following. Best stress management techniques are; meditation, yoga, walking in nature, having a bath, listening to great music and laughing out loud!
- START A JOURNAL. Begin by writing down what you are grateful for and why you want to be Fit ‘n Healthy. Making change can be difficult. TRY THIS: OPAR – VISION (what is your vision); O – OBSTACLES (what are your obstacles), P – PLAN (what is your plan to overcome the obstacles), A – ACTION (take action), R – REFLECTION (look back at the result and tweak if needed).
- ‘LOVE HOW FIT ‘N HEALTHY FEELS’ – take this mantra and remember it to stay on track.
STEP 4: DETOX PLUS SUPPLEMENTS
Struggling to get Fit ‘n Healthy? I would love to create a Personalized Nutritional Plan for you. Get one on one help!
Whether it’s to drop some extra weight, balance your hormones, build some sexy muscle or even just do a whole body tune-up!
Simply GO HERE to learn more and get started NOW.
What’s it going to cost you if you don’t take action now?
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