Let’s talk hormones

By admin

Express News Service

Our body has an intelligence of its own and if you are putting on weight, it indicates improper communication between your cells or hormones. For instance, leptin is a hormone that makes you feel full. We don’t feel hungry and don’t consume unnecessary calories and therefore don’t gain weight if this hormone is activated. On the other hand, ghrelin is a hunger hormone.

When turned on more than it should be, it makes you feel hungry constantly, so you tend to eat unnecessarily. These hormones might be the reason why we put on weight even when we are exercising well and eating the right kind of food. There’s one more hormone that should be activated in our system if we aim to burn or lose fat or inches and that is adiponectin—all of us have it, but it needs to be activated. When this hormone is released, activated and stored in the fat cells, it helps burn fat.

Thus, today we know that fat burns fat. Therefore, zero fat or no fat or oil-free diets are all fads because they may help you lose weight but then you look older, age rapidly, experience hair loss, hormonal imbalance, etc. Bad quality fats from junk, trans-fats make you gain weight but good quality fats like cold-pressed oils, nuts, seeds, avocados, etc., will help you activate hormones in the body that burn fat and help maintain and prevent fat gain in your cells.

Scientifically, adiponectin also controls insulin metabolism and therefore blood sugar and insulin levels are maintained, plus this plays a huge role in metabolising your lipids by reducing bad cholesterol (LDL) and increasing good cholesterol levels (HDL). 

So, how do we activate the release of adiponectin in the body that will ultimately help to regulate carbs, lipids and sugar levels? Read on for a few tips:

Omega-3: This works on reducing inflammation in the body. We need the right amount of Omega-3 fats from supplements, walnuts, flaxseeds for vegetarians and from fatty fish like sardines, mackerel, salmon, or in supplement form for non-vegetarians to get the benefits. It helps activate adiponectin to burn fat and also enhances the thermogenesis process in the body that improves metabolism.

Fibre: We have seen that many people are fibre-deficient as they do not consume a good amount of fruit, nuts, seeds, or veggies. The right amount of fibre will help activate this hormone and also control sugar levels, which aids in weight loss.

Exercise: Moderate exercise or walking combined with Yoga, swimming, dance, Pilates and weight training can help activate this hormone’s release. Your body also releases feel-good hormones to control cortisol levels, which brings it back to harmony and enhances the weight-loss process.

Tea/coffee: In moderation, it does help but excess tea or coffee can make your body acidic and may lead to weight gain rather than reducing it. So, let us be mindful with this one.

Dark chocolate: Raw cacao nibs, raw cacao powder, 80 to 90 per cent dark chocolate is great for DNA, fat loss, gut microbiome, and immunity; and it releases adiponectin to help burn fat. One to two coin-sized pieces a day is fine!

Let’s empower our body to use its intelligence and hormones to help us reduce weight and stay fit.

Deepika Rathod
Chief Nutrition Officer, Luke Coutinho Holistic Healing Systems. The writer is a clinical nutritionist with  a focuson healthy lifestyle choices.