Tag Archives: nutrition

Vitamin D Supplement Aids Weight Loss

Overweight Americans, who are vitamin D deficient, can now take a supplement of the nutrient to help them lose weight, according to a new Italian study (HealthDay 2015).

Vitamin D Aids Weight Loss

Vitamin D may help overweight individuals lose weight who are vitamin D deficient. Photo: Sathit/Shutterstock

I love vitamins because they are good for replacing the nutrients I need for my diet plan during weight loss efforts. Prior research has demonstrated that vitamin D deficiency is related to a risk of obesity and obesity-related issues, says led scientist Vigna of the University of Milan. The team mentioned that past research on the use of vitamin D deficiency to stop obesity has been indecisive thus far.

In northern Italy, it has been estimated that severe vitamin D deficiency varies from 6 percent in overweight people to 30 to 40 percent in morbidly obese individuals. Nearly all obese persons did not have a favorable vitamin D level.

The study consisted of 400 overweight or obese individuals with low vitamin D, who were to follow a low-calorie diet and then were separated into three groups. One group took no supplements, while the other two either took 100,000 international units (IU) or 25,000 IU of vitamin D each month.

After 6 months, people who took the supplements accomplished a significantly greater weight loss and reduction in waist circumference than those who took no supplements. The people who took 100,000 units lost an average of 5.4kg, while 3.8kg was the total fat loss for the 25,000 unit group (HealthDay 2015).

“The present data indicate that in obese and overweight people with vitamin D deficiency, vitamin D supplementation aids weight loss and enhances the beneficial effects of a reduced calorie diet,” Vigna team said. The scientists recommend that all obese and overweight individuals have their vitamin D levels checked.

It is important to note that the effects of vitamin D is only limited to those who actually have a vitamin D deficiency. Consuming the proper amounts of vitamins and minerals is important, said Dr. Christopher Ochner, an expert in nutrition, weight loss and obesity of The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. However, “this study does not suggest that everyone looking to lose weight should start taking large doses of vitamin D – or any other supplement,” he stressed, adding that “most individuals are not vitamin D-deficient.”

Vitamin D has the nickname “sunshine vitamin” because the body produces the nutrient when skin is exposed to the sun. People can also get vitamin D from foods such as eggs, milk, salmon, tuna, orange juice and cereal. If you are obese or overweight and vitamin D deficient, consult with your physician to see how taking this supplement may help you lose weight.

Leeman Taylor
Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice from FAMU
Real Estate Investor & Internet Marketer

Source: Preidt, R. “Vitamin D Supplements Might Help Some Lose Weight” HealthDay 2015

Burn Fat by Drinking Red Wine

Red wine or even grape juice is not only good for lowering your blood pressure but it can also help you burn fat and lose weight. According to a new study at Oregon State University, red wine could spark fat burning when consumed in moderation (Okla, Meshail et al. 2015).

Red Wine - Burn Fat

Muscadine grape phytochemicals (MGP) found in red wine, has been show to help burn fat. Photo The Peregrine Reads

In the study, mice were fed a 60 percent high-fat diet plus given muscadine grape phytochemicals (MGP), a compound found in red wine for 10 weeks. Researchers found that MGP significantly reduced visceral fat mass or helped burn fat and that ellagic acid was a major component in removing fatty acids from liver cells. Neil Shay, PhD, a professor of food science technology at Oregon State University and the study’s lead author suggests, “ellagic acid may constitute a consumer-friendly dietary strategy that may be effective in reducing lipid accumulation and burning fat both in adipose tissue and liver.” I admire this idea because it’s a more natural approach to losing weight instead of the everyday fat loss-promoting supplements.

Venus Factor is a great fat loss system for women and it focuses on controlling the leptin hormone that signals hunger to your brain. Fat loss for women is very difficult than it is for men and this system only focuses on weight loss for women. I personally love grapes and its compound ellagic acid, has also been shown to slow the growth of tumors and eliminate cancer cells which are amazing health benefits.

This new study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry could give way to new dietary strategies for reducing fat in the liver using just natural fruits like grapes. I never knew that drinking red wine had such great fat burning qualities but if it helps to burn fat and lose weight, then why not have a glass of red wine in moderation?

Leeman Taylor
Senior Criminal Justice Major at Florida A&M University
Real Estate Investor & Internet Marketer

Source: Okla, Meshail et al “Ellagic acid modulates lipid accumulation in primary human adipocytes and human hepatoma Huh7 cells via discrete mechanism” Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, Volume 26, Issue 1, 82-90

Less Common Obesity Surgery Better for Weight Loss

Gastric bypass and duodenal switch are two of the most common weight loss surgeries for treatment of severe obesity. A new study published in JAMA Surgery found that duodenal switch, the less common fat loss procedure, was shown to help individuals lose more weight and improve glycemic control (Risstad H, et al. 2015).

Duodenal Switch - Weight Loss

Duodenal switch has been linked to greater weight loss and decreased cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Photo: Bariatrics P.A.

Traditional diet and exercise have always been my choice of natural weight loss methods but I do understand the need for surgical procedures for severely obese individuals. The clinical trial included individuals with a BMI between 50 and 60, aged 20 to 50 years, and had prior fat loss attempts that did not enable sustained weight loss (Risstad H, et al. 2015).

Of the 60 included individuals, 31 underwent gastric bypass surgery and 29 underwent a duodenal switch. Fifty-five participants (92%) returned to the 5-year visit after an average follow-up of 61 months. The total body weight loss was 26.4% after gastric bypass and 40.3% after duodenal switch which is quite shocking to me. Also, cholesterol, triglyceride concentrations and blood pressure levels were significantly decreased after duodenal switch.

The only downfalls to duodenal switch are the more adverse events as compared to gastric bypass. Surgery to correct malnutrition or severe diarrhea was required in 10% of patients after duodenal switch so readmission rates were much higher.

The bottom line is that duodenal switch results in greater weight loss and good improvements in blood sugar and cholesterol levels over a 5-year period in patients with a BMI between 50 and 60. However, duodenal switch was linked to more long-term nutritional and surgical complications compared to gastric bypass surgery for weight loss.

Leeman Taylor
Senior Criminal Justice Major at Florida A&M University
Real Estate Investor & Internet Marketer

Source: Risstad H, Sovik TT, Engstrom M, et al. “Five-Year Outcomes after Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass and Laparoscopic Duodenal Switch in Patients with Body Mass Index of 50 to 60: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Surg. 4 February 2015

New Weight Loss Drug Saxenda FDA Approved

The new weight loss drug Saxenda (liraglutide) has been approved by the FDA for weight-management in addition to exercise and a low-calorie diet. This drug is approved for adults who suffer from obesity or who are overweight and have at least one weight-related issue such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, or high cholesterol (FDA 2014). With more than one-third of adults in America overweight (CDC), this new drug can help millions lose weight and focus on a healthy lifestyle.

Saxenda Weight Loss Drug

New weight loss drug Saxenda is approved by FDA. Photo by PR Newswire

According to James Smith, M.D., M.S., acting director of the Division Evaluation of Metabolism and Endocrinology Products in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, “Obesity is a public health concern and threatens the overall well-being of patients.” He then goes on to say that Saxenda provides an additional treatment option for chronic weight management when combined with physical activity and a low-calorie diet (FDA 2014).

What is Saxenda?

Saxenda is a glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist and should not be combined with any other drug in its class, including Victoza, a treatment for type-2 diabetes. On the other hand, the safety and effectiveness for treating type-2 diabetes has not been established for Saxenda.

In the clinical trials, 4,800 obese and overweight individuals with and without weight-related issues were evaluated. Approximately 50 percent of patients with type-2 diabetes, who were treated with Saxenda, lost at least 5 percent of their body weight compared with 16 percent of individuals treated with placebo (FDA 2014). Patients should be evaluated for 16 weeks to determine if the treatment is working or not.

What are the side effects of Saxenda?

Saxenda should not be used in individuals with a personal or family history of MTC or individuals with multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type-2. The most commonly observed side effects were nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, low-blood sugar, constipation, and reduced appetite. As any weight loss drug, there will be side effects but I still believe the benefits of Saxenda outweigh the bad and still should be considered as a weight management alternative.

Novo Nordisk manufactures and distributes the drug in Denmark and it is expected to be released in 2015.

Leeman Taylor
Senior Criminal Justice Major at Florida A&M University
Real Estate Investor & Internet Marketer

Source: FDA.gov “FDA approves weight-management drug Saxenda” 23 December 2014 U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Fat is Released through Breathing After Weight Loss

When you lose weight, have you ever wondered where the fat goes? Most people believe that fat is converted to energy or heat, which violates the law of conservation of mass. According to researchers from the University of New South Wales in Australia, majority of the fat is exhaled or breathed out as carbon dioxide during weight loss (BMJ 2014;349:g7257).

Fat Released through Breathing After Weight Loss

Fat is released through breathing after weight loss. Photo by Healthy Eggs

Professor Andrew Brown and Ruben Meerman stated that excess carbohydrates or protein in the diet is transferred to triglyceride and placed in the lipid droplets of adipocytes. Extra dietary fat does not need conversion other than lipolysis and re-esterification (BMJ 2014; 349:g7257). When people desire to lose weight while keeping their fat-free mass, they are attempting to metabolize those stored triglycerides.

The complete oxidation of a single triglyceride molecule involves many enzymes and biochemical steps and the atoms that make up this formula are carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Researchers wanted to study the fat storage that leaves as carbon dioxide or water during weight loss so they traced every atom’s pathway out of the body (BMJ 2014;349:g7257). The results showed that the lungs are the primary excretory organ for weight loss and when someone loses 10 kg of fat (triglyceride); 8.4 kg is exhaled as carbon dioxide. The rest of the 28 kg total of CO2 produced is contributed by breathing in oxygen.

When resting, the average 70 kg person consuming a mixed diet exhales 200 ml of carbon dioxide in 12 breaths per minute. At one day of sleeping, resting, and performing light activities that double the resting metabolic rate, each for 8 hours, a person exhales 203g of carbon from the body. If you replace just one hour of rest with exercise, you are increasing the metabolic rate to seven times that of by resting, for instance, jogging eliminates an additional 39g of carbon from your body, increasing the total by nearly 20% to 240g (BMJ 2014;349:g7257). “Physical activity as a weight loss strategy is easily foiled by relatively small quantities of excess food”, says Professor Brown and Meerman.

The main purpose of this study was to demonstrate that the lungs are the primary excretory organ for fat. Weight loss requires unleashing the carbon stored in fat cells, which reinforce the misconception of “eat less, move more.” The researchers recommend these concepts to be included in secondary school science curriculums and university biochemistry courses to correct widespread misconceptions or myths about weight loss.

Leeman Taylor
Senior Criminal Justice Major at Florida A&M University
Real Estate Investor and Internet Marketer

Source: BMJ 2014; 349:g7257

Girl Loses 50 Pounds After Weight Loss Surgery

Alexis was morbidly obese by the age of 12 but denied weight loss surgery by her health insurance company to stop the rare condition. Can you imagine that, being denied health care coverage for a serious health condition just because of your age? I understand weight loss surgery may be a risk factor for young children but if the benefits outweigh the odds then why not go for it? Since Alexis first told her story, donations have been pouring in for a gastric-sleeve procedure to help her lose weight (Shapiro 2014).

Alexis - Weight Loss Surgery

Hope and love for Alexis
I know it’s been a little while since I have updated. It’s been very busy with Alexis’ birthday coming up and Christmas. Alexis has been doing really good. She still doesn’t like going to school and gives me a hard time sometimes but she tries her best. She gets very very tired from school. She likes math, reading, and language arts. She doesn’t like music, or computers. She likes learning! She walks about a half mile or more every day at school. She is still scared to try new things that she couldn’t do while she was much heavier, but we are trying. Thank you everyone for caring! Oh yes and she got glasses!
December 7

About 3 years ago, Alexis had surgery to remove a benign brain tumor. Unfortunately, the surgery caused her hormones and metabolism to go chaos, increasing her appetite to make her feel hungry all the time. She continued to eat despite her family’s efforts to stop her and eventually gained more than 200 pounds – a rare, medically triggered obesity. Her health also decreased very fast (Shapiro 20014). Her last hope was to undergo a gastric-sleeve procedure to save her health and help her lose weight effectively.

The operation was performed in March at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and the operation reduced her stomach size to help curb her appetite. Although the surgery was successful, Alexis still had to endure the agony of recovery but she pulled through very well with the strong support of family and loved ones. Jenny says they have enjoyed so much support and the comments from Facebook shows people really do care about Alexis.

By late June, she had lost 37 pounds and was off to a good start of becoming a new, healthier person (Shapiro 2014). She became a happier person and was back in school for the first time in nearly two years. She had more confidence and became the old, joyful Alexis she was once before. “Hope has been the only thing that has gotten us through,” said Jenny Shapiro, the mother of Alexis. Jenny says that her daughter’s strength and determination have made her even more proud of Alexis and she’s glad she helped her fight all the way.

Leeman Taylor
Senior Criminal Justice Major at Florida A&M University
Real Estate Investor & Internet Marketer

Source: Shapiro, J. “Once obese but starving Texas girl sees a healthy future months after surgery” 11 December 2014 www.today.com