I just read about some findings at the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions Weight of the Nation conference that is being held this week in Washington, D.C. Experts now report that obesity costs our nation $147 billion per year in medical costsand obese people spend almost $1,500 more on health care each year than people of average weight.
Clearly obesity has been a serious problem for many years, but whats so disconcerting is that its only getting worse, as is evident by this report. Admittedly, losing weight isnt always easy, especially as you reach midlife and beyond. It takes commitment and dedication to follow a natural weight loss planbut it can be done. I recommend taking the following supplements, some of which provide natural appetite control and others that help boost your metabolism and help your body burn fat.
- L-carnitine is an amino acid found primarily in meat (especially beef and lamb) and dairy products, with smaller amounts also present in grains, fruits, and vegetables. Several studies have been conducted on L-carnitine and weight loss. One study in particular found that individuals who took supplemental L-carnitine every day, in addition to eating a well-balanced diet and engaging in moderate exercise, lost an average of ten pounds in three months — a 25 percent greater weight reduction than patients who did not take L-carnitine. Additionally, participants taking the supplement reduced their body mass index by 1.5 points, and reduced their low density lipoprotein (LDL) and total cholesterol levels as well as their blood sugar and blood pressure levels. I recommend taking 1,000 mg of L-carnitine per day, in divided doses.
- Green tea contains polyphenols, remarkable compounds with a host of therapeutic actions. Polyphenols appear to block the enzyme that breaks down norepinephrine, a brain chemical that regulates your metabolism. The higher your levels of norepinephrine, the faster your metabolism, which in turn allows you to burn calories even more efficiently. I recommend 300 to 400 mg of green tea extract a day.
- Hydroxycitric acid (HCA) is an extract of Garcinia cambogia, a small, pumpkin-shaped fruit from India thats traditionally used as a culinary spice in curry dishes and in traditional folk remedies for a number of ailments. It appears to direct calories away from storing fat and, instead, toward building muscle. In addition, HCA inhibits an enzyme called citrate lyase, which plays a role in turning carbohydrates into fat. By blocking this enzymatic process, HCA is believed to boost the bodys tendency to burn, rather than store, excess carbs. HCA can be found in a variety of diet supplements that are available at most health food stores and vitamin retailers. Some good brands include Life Extension HCA Citrimax (available at www.iherb.com) and Natural Max Super CitriMax (available atwww.nutraceutical.com).
And remember, you simply cannot lose weight and keep it off without engaging in a regular exercise program that combines aerobic and strength training, and following a healthy, mostly organic, vegetarian-emphasis diet.