The most important weight loss tips are probably not what you think they should be, and you may be surprised to learn that weight gain isn’t about food!
As God said “My people perish for lack of knowledge,” and nowhere is this truer than with obesity and weight gain. Fortunately, we can change things. There’s no reason to lose hope!
Table of Contents
Why You Should Lose Weight
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
~ 1 Corinthians 10:31
First, it’s important to know your why – i.e. the reason why that motivates your behavior to lose weight or shed body fat. Once we do this, we’ll be prepared to set up some actionable steps that can help you overcome some struggles you may be having
The effects of being overweight and obese are endless. Weight loss is one of the biggest challenges Americans face. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says, “Obesity-related conditions, including heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer, are some of the leading causes of preventable death.” Obesity is the leading cause of preventable death, second only to smoking.
Being overweight can cause economic and psychological pressure. Sadly, obese people are discriminated against on a regular basis. The airline industry requires obese passengers to purchase two seats, and the Boy Scouts of America recently banned obese children from attending Jamboree summer camps. Plus, there is an increasing amount of “fat” jokes on TV and movies, which make it socially acceptable.
Here are three good reasons to lose weight:
- For God – Our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit and the Bible says that we are to present them as living sacrifices to God. We should be healthy, happy, and strong to overcome life’s challenges. Have you ever wondered about the Golden Rule? How can you love others if you do not love yourself? To be a Christian and treat others well, you need to love yourself so that you can love others.
- For Yourself – It is your God-given inheritance to live an abundant life and feel confident in who you are and what you look like. You must love yourself without reservations.
- For Your Family – You want to always be present with your loved ones with clarity of mind and energy. You can share more memories with them when you live a longer life.
3 Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Weight
Next we need to discuss some reasons why you’re not losing weight.
Contrary popular advice, according to the NHS, calorie restricting diets should be avoided. Instead, it is suggested that you take a balanced eating approach when attempting or struggling to lose weight. Furthermore, exercise like burst training can help tremendously.
Calorie restricted diets, on the other hand, make your body break down its own muscle so that you have enough energy to live day to day. Naturally, when this happens, your BMR is lowered because your muscle mass decreases, and this only slows down your metabolism. This is why many people will gain weight immediately after stopping a calorie restricted diet.
Everyone aims for an abundant life, and this is all about balance. Balance is something that most Americans need to work on. Just look at how most people spend their days and what they allow to enter their bodies by way of food and drink and you’ll see reasons why they are not losing weight.
Here are three of the primary reasons people cannot lose weight and/or cannot keep it off.
1. Hormone Imbalance and Toxicity
Hormone imbalance and toxins from the environment are intricately intertwined. This is one of the reasons that chronic disease (like diabetes and obesity) has been linked with toxic overload. One of the most alarming examples of this was observed and discovered by the American Diabetes Association.
Researchers looked at the connection between insulin resistance and organic pollutants. Adult volunteers were tested in the 2016 study, and it was found that 80 percent or more of the volunteers had low levels of six POPs (persistent organic pollutants) in their blood streams.
Oxychlordane was one of the six POPs found in the bloodstream. This is actually an insecticide that is used for citrus crops and corn crops. It is used on domestic gardens and lawns as well. All six POPs also had diabetes strongly associated with them.
It was found that POP exposure puts people at risk for a higher body mass index and waist circumference. This perpetuates the idea that diabetes and the obesity cycle is definitely occurring in America today and has been at its worst for the last 20 years.
The Lancet, a world-renowned journal, recently published results from this study. The results were “a surprise for many people working in diabetes research, because most studies to date have focused on the effects of genetics and the westernization of dietary habits and lifestyle, while ignoring the potential effect of xenobiotics.”
The article also suggested that, “more than 90 percent of POPs comes from animal foods in the general population without occupational or accidental exposures.”
This is why it is so important to choose your meats wisely. Ultimately, you are eating what the animal did. That’s why you should choose grass-fed beef that is organic and has cancer-fighting properties when you can. If you don’t, you’ll be eating POP-ridden trash feed that has been genetically modified and used to fill up the animals that you eat for dinner.
In addition, watch out for where your kids play. Often, parks and schoolyards have pesticides and POPs sprayed on them. These organophosphates, say the Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility, disturb growth hormones and the neurotransmitter balance in the body. They have been linked to ADHD and autism and many other neurodevelopmental disorders.
Here’s a good rule to follow: if the grass that your kids are going to play on looks lush, green, and perfect, it’s probably been sprayed with pesticides and toxins, so don’t allow them to play there.
2. Poor Digestion
In order to properly keep off the pounds, you must have an optimal functioning digestive system. The digestive system is responsible for the nutrients being absorbed into your body and for waste removal. Of course, poor digestion has also been linked to numerous problems, including toxic overload, diarrhea, not losing weight, and constipation. Here are some specific diseases that have been linked to excess BMI and poor health:
- Yeast overgrowth, especially Candida
- Food allergies/sensitivities
- Celiac disease/gluten intolerance
- Leaky gut
Certain causes of bad digestion include eating lots of processed and unhealthy fats, living a stressful life, and living a sedentary lifestyle. Additionally, there’s another common marker for poor digestion: antibiotic use. This has been linked to dysbiosis, yeast infections, and constipation.
Antibiotic use is on the rise. In fact, four out of five U.S. citizens have been prescribed antibiotics. This means that antibiotic prescriptions make up 17 percent of all prescriptions on the market today.
The so-called benefits that antibiotics offer do not mean that they are worth it when you look at the countless risks that have been associated with them. It is much better to take a natural approach to healthcare before resorting to antibiotic use.
Nearly every chronic disease is linked with inflammation, which means that it is essentially America’s number one silent killer. It’s the main reason why reducing inflammation is one of the five primary targets of the Healing Foods Diet.
As far back as the 1990s, it was found that inflammatory peptides like TNF-alpha and leptin (both hormones) are secreted from adipose cells. Since that time, there has been substantial research looking at the connection between low-grade systematic inflammation and obesity.
“Meta-information” is the phenomenon that represents this connection. University of Ulster, UK researchers have been examining this phenomenon and have found that inflammation goes down when obese people and overweight people lose weight.
They published an article in Nutrition Research Reviews which showed that those people who lost 10 percent of their body weight had the best improvements in inflammation. The researchers also found that lowering inflammation itself has great positive effects on weight loss. Consider making healthy switches like coconut oil for inflammation control and weight loss.
Is There Such a Thing as a Slow Metabolism?
The NHS (National Health Service) of the United Kingdom says that your metabolism is: “All the chemical processes that go on continuously inside the body to keep you alive and your organs functioning normally, such as breathing, repairing cells and digesting food.”
Your BMR or basal metabolic rate is the minimal amount of energy that your body needs to maintain and carry out all of its chemical processes. Therefore, a low BMR represents an example of someone who has a slow metabolism.
Actually, however, it doesn’t seem that having a lower BMR means gaining weight. According to the NHS:
“People who struggle to lose weight often blame a slow metabolism. But there’s little evidence to support this claim.
Interestingly, research shows that overweight people have faster metabolisms than thinner people because larger bodies require more energy to carry out basic bodily functions.
This is rather interesting. It shows that a common scapegoat for those who are horribly obese and overweight is a low metabolic rate. According to Mayo Clinic doctor Donald Hensrud, M.D., “There is such a thing as a slow metabolism. But slow metabolism is rare, and it’s usually not what’s behind being overweight or obese — that’s usually a matter of diet and exercise.” Instead, Hensrud says that these are the biggest reasons for not losing weight:
- A family history and genetics
- Too little exercise and a sedentary lifestyle
- Eating too many calories
- Bad habits that are unhealthy, like not getting enough sleep or skipping breakfast (Instead of skipping, try a healthy breakfast like homemade granola.)
The NHS agrees:
“Research has also shown that people tend to eat more than they think they do. When asked to write down everything they’ve consumed in a day, many people tend to report eating far less than they actually do. More often than not, the reason you’re putting on weight is not because of a slow metabolism, it’s because you’re eating and drinking more calories than you’re burning. It may be hard to accept, but staying on top of the number of calories you eat is key to losing weight and keeping it off.”
5 Weight Loss Tips to Achieve Your Life Vision
Losing weight is more than just having an exercise program. It is a lifestyle. When you view it as a lifestyle, you can achieve your true potential. If you want to lose weight, you need to have a regular exercise regimen and put healthy food on your plate. Follow these weight loss tips to lose weight and keep it off forever.
Proverbs 29:18 says “Where there is no vision, the people will perish.” This is true for people who die early from diabetes, obesity, and other chronic diseases. We can achieve great power by using positive words and visualization.
It’s great if you can get away from work and go on a “natural health retreat” to focus on your goals. Use this experience to prayerfully plan your future health. Do not be consumed with work deadlines and stress. Make sure you spend a few hours over a few days to fall in love with the new you.
Make big goals and make you sure set a time frame. This is important so that your goals are realistic and challenging. It’s helpful to look at short and long-term goals. This makes your vision manageable and achievable. Create a vision board to look at every day that highlights weight loss, health, and life goals. Make it large and colorful so it catches your attention each day.
“In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and he will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:6. With prayer and spending time with God, you can develop a plan and schedule to reach your success in the way the Lord is providing for you. Seek His advice as your mentor and counselor, and be sure to use a calendar to track your success so you can to see your results over time. Plan healthy options.
Write down your results in a diary or notebook, or track them on your phone. Pick a day that you can track your goals (example- sleep per night, waist circumference, total weight, BMI, body fat, etc). Keep a food journal to monitor your consumption for 30+ days. This way you can evaluate your progress and see what areas need improvement. Your notes will not lie to you. If you eat at McDonald’s three times a week, you will see it in your journal and you will see it on your body.
Ecclesiastes says, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.” It is vital that you have a partner who can support you. Your healthy lifestyle is so much easier when you share it with a friend. If you are on your own, consider hiring a health coach or life coach to encourage you and to help you make healthy lifestyle choices.
Take some time to think through these weight loss tips and tell us in the comments below which of these weight loss tips work best for you.
The Importance of Listening to Your Body
There is a Navajo proverb that says, “If you want to see what your body will look like tomorrow, look at your thoughts today.”
There’s an important reason why you cannot let your body become numb and why it is dangerous to continually put toxins into your body. God designed us so that fevers, stomachaches, rashes, and headaches would be red flags. These would be clues and warning signs that tell us that the balance of our bodies has been challenged.
Today, however, these natural red flags are masked with makeup, prescription medications, and other “Band-Aids.” People want to avoid being bothered by unsightly acne, pesky acid reflux, skin rashes, or leaky gut. This is true even though these are the results of making poor health decisions.
Judith Orloff, MD said, “Your body is a richly nuanced intuitive receiver.” Therefore, the importance of you being aware of your “body’s signals” cannot be emphasized enough as you continue your path toward optimal health and wellness. According to Orloff, it is critical to keep watch for what she refers to as the “5 Warning Signs That Your Body Sends.”
- Feeling out of focus, oddly numb, off-center, or detached
- Feeling toxic: as if you’re about to get sick or come down with the flu
- Experiencing symptoms that you can’t explain that last for years at a time. Some people might have a knot in their stomach, an empty feeling in their core, an achy heart, or a lump in their throat
- Feeling exposed without a defense
- Feeling tired all the time
Essentially, as Americans continue to ignore these warnings signs, they lose connection with their bodies, and they lose the ability to sense the warning signs. They become literal toxic waste dumps.
They suffer from imbalanced hormones and have excess inflammation all the time. This puts them at serious risk for many chronic diseases like heart disease. In the end, these are the symptoms that contribute to struggling to lose weight, continuing the cycle even more.
An Olympian Mindset for Weight Loss
One of the primary reasons people hate themselves is because of how they look. It can be extremely challenging to overcome the mental roadblocks related to being overweight, and it takes an Olympian effort to overcome them.
What do I need to do to be the best I can be?
Have an Olympic-level mindset. Ask yourself what you need to do to be the BEST!
What do I need to do to have an Olympic-level mindset?
It takes years of training, a drive of passion, and a willingness to never give up, to reach greatness. Here are some inspiring Olympic medalists:
“The only victory that counts is the one over yourself.”
~ Jesse Owens, American sprinter and long jumper
You need to believe in yourself to reach your goals. Jesus said that “anything is possible if you believe.” It is important to surround yourself with positive people who are seeing their dreams become realities and glean off their confidence. Choose your friends wisely, because success is contagious.
“I didn’t set out to beat the World; I just set out to do my absolute best.”
“~ Al Oerter, four-time gold medal winner in the discus throw
It can be challenging to keep up with a culture that lives in vanity and hedonism. It’s important to remember that it is about you and not the person working next to you. Men and women are both impacted by societal competition. You should do your best with what God has given you.
Scientifically speaking, we each have our own “biochemical individuality.” Not every woman can be skinny like Taylor Swift, and not every man can become strong like Chris Hemsworth. We all have different strengths and weaknesses. We can set realistic goals for our body types so we can be successful.
“The first thing is to love your sport. Never do it to please someone else. It has to be yours.”
~ Florence Griffith-Joyner, three-time gold medalist in 1988
This is why you should surround yourself with positive people. You may not be able to close the mouth of your critics. You need to focus on the prize of the future to reach your goals.
“I’m trying to do the best I can. I’m not concerned with tomorrow, but with what goes on today.”
~ Mark Spitz, gold medalist in swimming in 1972 and 1968
We need to remember to focus on today rather than the troubles of the future. We discourage people from weighing themselves every day. Your body will fluctuate and can be discouraging.
“It’s all about the journey, not the outcome.”
~ Carl Lewis, gold medalist in 1996, 1992, 1988
We need to enjoy the process to have a rewarding and exciting life. We need to embrace the rough times too. If we don’t have low moments, we cannot fully appreciate the great moments.
“Hard days are the best because that’s where champions are made. So if you push through the hard days you can get through anything.”
~ Gabby Douglas, two-time gold medal winner in the 2012 London Olympic Games
In the book of Romans, Paul says, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”
When we have challenging days, God will strengthen us with faith and we will see His glory. When we commit to weight loss and health, the Lord is in control and will show his eternal goodness.
“I am building a fire, and every day I train, I add more fuel. At just the right moment, I light the match.”
~ Mia Hamm, gold medalist in women’s football in 2004 and 1996
Mia Hamm is defining her breakthrough moment. God has perfect timing for you to control your health and destiny. This is an important moment for athletes because they put everything on the line to “go for the gold.” Once they set this goal, they never look back.
“Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this notion: The potential for greatness lives within each of us.”
~ Wilma Rudolph, gold medalist in athletics in 1960 and bronze medalist in 1956
You are only limited by your drive and creativity to make goals happen. Remember to keep pushing your limits and dreaming. If you say, “I am destined for greatness. I will reach my goals,” then your positive attitude will be reflected in your results.
“Nothing can substitute for just plain hard work.”
~ Andre Agassi, gold medalist in tennis in 1996
“Never put an age limit on your dreams.”
~Dara Torres, gold medalist in swimming in 2000, 1992 and 1984, silver medalist in 2008 and 1988 and bronze medalist in 2000 and 1988
You are never too old to become a better version of yourself. Dara Torres was 41 years old in the 2008 Olympics. She was the oldest swimmer to place on a U.S. Olympic team and won silver medals in each of the events she did. You need to overcome your insecurities about your age if you want to look and feel younger.
“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
~ Muhammad Ali, gold medalist in boxing in 1960
When you take the first steps toward a new healthy life, you will need to be courageous. It is terrifying to change. We applaud you for reading and researching all things natural, and we encourage you to make your dreams a reality.
The founder of the modern Olympic Games, Pierre de Coubertin, said, “The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well.” You will experience high and low points during your health journey. Remember to focus on why you are becoming healthy.
- Orloff J. How listening to your body can improve your life. Huffpost Healthy Living (Internet). Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judith-orloff-md/better-life_b_893593.html.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overweight and Obesity. http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/adult.html
- Jones OA et al. Environmental pollution and diabetes: a neglected association. Lancet. 2008; 371(9609): 287-8.
- Lee DH, et al. A strong dose-response relation between serum concentrations of persistent organic pollutants and diabetes: results from the national health and examination survey 1999–2002. Diabetes Care 2009; 29(7):1638–1644.
- Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility. In Harm’s Way: Toxic Threats To Child Development. Cambridge. 2000.
- Lang IA, et al. Association of urinary bisphenol A concentration with medical disorders and laboratory abnormalities in adults. JAMA 2008; 300(11): 1303-1310.
- Qatanani M, et al. Mechanisms of obesity-associated insulin resistance: many choices on the menu. Genes & Dev 2007; 21: 1443-1455.
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- CBS News. CDC: 4 out of 5 Americans prescribed antibiotics each year. 2013. Available at: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/cdc-4-out-of-5-americans-prescribed-antibiotics-each-year/
- Mayo Clinic. Metabolism and weight loss: How you burn calories. 2011. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/metabolism/WT00006.
- NHS. How can I speed up my metabolism? 2013. Available at: http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/loseweight/pages/how-can-i-speed-up-my-metabolism.aspx.
- Zhong W, et al. Age and Sex Patterns of Drug Prescribing in a Defined American Population. Mayo Clinic Proceedings 2013; 88(7): 697-707.