Successful Weight Loss
How You Lose Weight Depends on Your Body Shape
Most people think that to become healthy they must lose weight. Actually the opposite is true- in order to lose weight, you need to become more healthy. Every day, many thousands of people around Australia starve themselves or work up a sweat to try and lose weight. Most of them will only lose a few kilos, and when they stop all their hard work, the weight comes back on almost straight way. Getting slim seems to be a constant battle that they can never win.
As we know, having too much weight not only affects your appearance, it also has a damaging effect on your health. Overweight people have a shorter life expectancy, with an increased risk of having heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, etc.
Any therapist will tell you, that if you don’t address the causes, you won’t get good results, or get short-term improvement only. If you are eating well, exercising, and still not losing weight, something is causing your body to store fat instead of burn it up.
As your body becomes healthier, the weight will start to come off and stay off. How you do this depends on your body shape- whether you are an Apple or a Pear. If you have an apple shaped body your metabolism is dramatically different from someone with a pear shaped body- you assimilate your nutrients differently, you store the extra calories as weight in different ways, your hormones work differently, and you even respond differently to supplements and medications. So the closer your diet and exercise routine matches your body shape, the better and quicker results you will get. Your body shape also determines what type of health problems you are likely to develop in the future.
The apple shaped person stores most of their body weight in their belly (abdominal region). Women with this shape will generally have narrow hips, greater breast tissue, as well as a relatively large waist. Apple shapes have more weight surrounding their internal organs (visceral weight), which is associated with insulin resistance (so higher diabetes risk), higher blood pressure, and lower levels of ‘good’ (HDL) cholesterol. This puts them at a greater risk of heart disease – the higher the waist to hip ratio, the higher the risk.
The pear shaped person carries most of their body weight around their hips, thighs, and buttocks. They will generally have a smaller upper body (smaller breasts) and a heavier lower body. A pear-shaped person is more susceptible to cellulite, varicose veins and eating disorders. (However they have much less risk of heart problems or diabetes.)
The main difference between the types is the way their nervous systems work. The nervous system is the main control system of the body, and it has two parts – the Sympathetic and Parasympathetic. Apple shapes have a stronger sympathetic system, and pear shapes a stronger parasympathetic system.
The sympathetic part is the body’s emergency response system (‘fight or flight’). The heart beats faster, breathing is faster and shallower, muscles tighten, blood sugar levels are raised, and non-emergency parts of the body are turned right down, such as the digestive system. The thyroid and adrenal glands are stimulated to provide extra energy for fighting or running away. An over-active sympathetic system can cause exhaustion, nervousness, stress, or feelings of panic. Because of their dominant sympathetic system, the bodies of apple shapes are in a constant state of over-stimulation. The body prepares for emergencies by storing up extra reserves, so more weight is deposited in the abdomen. To become slimmer, apple shapes must have their systems turned down. They:
- Have high adrenaline, cortisol and thyroid activity
- Have a faster metabolism
- Tend to reflux
- Tend to anxiety
- Have more bacterial infections
- Need a balance of cardio and strength exercises
- Are salt sensitive, so must have low salt in their diet
- Don’t lose weight if they cut fat out of their diet
- Put on weight if they eat sugar
- Need a balance of protein, complex carbohydrates and fats in their diet
The parasympathetic part is the body’s nourishing, healing and regeneration system. The body is in ‘rest and digest’ mode, so its nerves stimulate digestion, as well as the immune system and elimination organs. When this system dominates, the body tends to conserve energy rather than use it. The bodies of pear shapes are in a state of under-activity, so they usually feel tired or fatigued most of the time. Because their bodies run too slow, they don’t burn up calories as quickly as usual, so the extra calories are stored as fat. To lose this fat, pear shapes must have their systems stimulated. They:
- Tend to lose weight in the upper body first if they just reduce their calorie intake
- Have a slow metabolism
- Often have blood sugar fluctuations, especially hypoglycaemia
- Tend to bloating
- Tend to depression
- Have more viral infections
- Need cardio exercise
- Are fat sensitive
- Need a high protein, low fat, and low sugar diet
Unless they identify which body shape they are, some people might be trying their hardest, but doing the exact opposite of what they need to be doing to lose weight!
We hope you have enjoyed reading this introduction to successful weight loss. If you are interested in finding out how you can lose weight by having the causes of the problem addressed as well as the symptoms, please call us on 3376 6911 and book in for a free Health Assessment. (The Assessment is valued at $120, but is available at no charge for the moment. There is also no obligation attached to your Assessment whatsoever.) We can then determine the reasons for your weight gain, and the best ways for you to lose it long-term.
Losing weight is one of the best things that you can do for your health and well-being. Not only will you look better, but you will likely have more energy, get tired less easily, and feel younger. As well as enjoying a longer and healthier life!
To get your free 1 hr Health Assessment (valued at $120), and find out how you can lose weight quickly in a way that improves your health, please call us on 3376 6911.