Tag Archives: venus factor

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

Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig Top Diet Plans for Weight Loss

Individuals seeking long-term weight loss should think about trying Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig, as a review of clinical trials ranks them top diet plans in a study (Ann. Intern. Med., 2015). Weight loss is a $2.5 billion growing industry with more than a third of adults obese in the United States. That is why commercial weight loss programs have become so popular but doctors still haven’t had much information to recommended specific programs.

Jennifer Hudson Weight Watchers - Weight Loss

Jennifer Hudson after her amazing weight loss with Weight Watchers. Glamaholic Photo

In the trial that lasted one year, Weight Watcher participants had at least a 2.6 percent greater weight loss than those who received only education. People who used Jenny Craig lost 4.9 percent more weight at 1 year compared to those who underwent education and counseling. Other weight-loss programs such as Nutrisystem resulted in a 3.8 percent greater fat loss, while Atkins had a 0.1% to 2.9% fat loss at 12 months.

I believe that weight loss programs that help individuals restrict calories with a strategic approach to making healthier diet choices is key to long-term weight loss. Other fat loss programs that focus strictly on supplements or prepackaged meals are not successful as Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig. Gudzune and researchers highlighted that “structure and intensity of contact” are highly correlated with program success.

Although diet and exercise are the key factors to weight loss, it seems that frequent coaching and making smart diet choices is what effects long-term weight loss the most. Clinicians may now consider referring obese or overweight patients to Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers as they are reviewed as top diet plans. Programs such as Nutrisystem, demonstrate promising fat-loss results; however, further research analyzing long-term weight loss outcomes are required.

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

Source: Gudzune KA, Doshi RS, Mehta AK, Chaudhry ZW, Jacobs DK, Vakil RM, et al. “Efficacy of Commercial Weight-Loss Programs: An Updated Systematic Review” Annals of Internal Medicine 2015

Eating Chocolate Can Help You Lose Weight, According to Study

If you love eating chocolate, it may help you lose weight as well as satisfy your sweet cravings according to a new study in the International Archives of Medicine. Diet and exercise is essential for any weight loss plan so German researchers analyzed the effect chocolate has on your diets (Bohannon et al. 2015).

Eat Chocolate to Lose Weight

Eating chocolate that’s high in cocoa content can help you lose weight. Clipart Photo

Chocolate has always been one of my favorites when it comes to sweets but it’s good to know that it may also have effects on fat loss. During the study that lasted several weeks, men and women between the ages of 19-67 were divided into three groups. One group followed a low-carbohydrate diet while consuming 42 grams of dark (81%) chocolate each day, another group followed their normal diet, and a control group followed a strict low-carb diet. Besides noting their BMI and weight, participants were also asked to assess their quality of sleep and mental state.

Shockingly, people in the chocolate intervention group experienced the easier and most successful weight loss. Even though there was a delay in the measureable effect of this diet, the weight reduction of this group surpassed the results of the low-carb group by 10% after only three weeks. Furthermore, the fat loss continued, compared to the low-carb group which saw a weight gain after a few weeks.

The chocolate group also discovered a major improvement in their physical and mental well-being while blood cholesterol levels reduced.

For those of you who love chocolate, consumption with high cocoa content can drastically improve the success of weight-loss diets. “To our surprise, the effect of chocolate is real,” says Bohannon. “It is not enough to just consume chocolate, but in combination with exercise and reduction in carbohydrates, our data indicate that chocolate can be a weight loss accelerator.” Eat more chocolate, lose weight easier!

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

Source: Bohannon et al. “Chocolate with high Cocoa content as a weight-loss accelerator” March 2015 International Archives of Medicine

Belly Fat Increased by Diet Sodas

Do you love diet sodas but still want to lose belly fat? If so, drinking diet sodas may not be a good idea according to a new study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Researchers discovered that people who drank diet soda gained nearly 3 times the belly fat over 9 years as those who did not consume diet soda (J AM Geriatr Soc 2015).

Diet Soda Linked to Belly Fat

According to the Journal of the American Geriatric Society, people who drank diet soda gained about 3 times the belly fat over 9 years. ClipArt Photo

In the study, 749 individuals ages 65 and older were asked, every few years, how many cans of soda they consumed a day, and how many of those sodas were diet or regular.

The results were very predictive of abdominal-fat gain, even after the researchers adjusted for factors like smoking, levels of physical activity and diabetes. Individuals who did not drink diet soda gained approximately 0.8 in. around the waistline over the study period, but the ones who consumed diet soda every day gained 3.2 in. The people who fell between – occasional drinkers of diet soda – gained nearly 1.8 in.

This is quite shocking news to me because I always believed that diet sodas were a healthy choice for weight loss but now research shows it increases belly fat over time for women over 40 and 65. Visceral fat – the fat that surrounds the abdominal organs- is associated with increased cardiovascular disease, type-2 diabetes and inflammation which make this kind of fat the most dangerous. These findings, which authors refer to as “striking,” add to the rising body of evidence that no- and low-calorie sweeteners may contain some health concerns.

“Regular sugar has caloric consequences,” says the study’s senior author Dr. Helen Hazuda, professor of medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. And one of those is that it triggers satiety – a sense of fullness or satisfaction. “Your body is use to knowing that a sweet taste means you are ingesting energy in the form of calories that, if you don’t burn them off, is going to convert to fat,” she says. Artificial sweeteners, however, confuse our bodies and weaken the link in our brains between sweetness and calories. That, Hazuda says, can lead to weight gain and cravings for sweeter and sweeter treats.

On the other hand, the Caloric Control Council, an association that represents the reduced-caloric food and beverage industry- disagreed with the study’s finding. “The use of low-calorie sweeteners in fat loss have been shown to have benefits,” the group mentioned.

Researchers found that the belly-fat gain was most common in people who were already overweight. Hazuda says when people think they’re doing something good by drinking artificially sweetened drinks, it’s “actually totally counterproductive.” For the most part, if you are seeking to lose belly fat, it would be a wise idea to reduce those diet sodas and choose a healthier diet choice such as natural fruit juice or water for fat loss.

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

Source: Hazuda, H. William, K. Fowler, S. “Diet Soda Intake is Associated with Long-Term Increases in Waist Circumference in a Biethnic Cohort of Older Adults: The San Antonio Longitudinal Study of Aging” 17 March 2015 Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

Melissa McCarthy Shows off 50 Pound Weight Loss at SXSW

Melissa McCarthy, the ‘Bridesmaids’ star, looked amazing after her 50 pound weight loss on the red carpet at South By Southwest (SXSW) this past Sunday. The 44-year old actor had been losing weight for months now and she finally has a chance to outshine co-stars like Jason Statham and Jude Law (Brow 2015).

Melissa McCarthy Weight Loss

Melissa McCarthy shows off 50 pound weight loss at SXSW. (Photo Credit: Getty [2])

Melissa’s fifty pound weight loss apparently became the talk of the festival as she looked stunning at the Austin film extravaganza. Finding your own weight loss routine is important and Melissa credited diet and exercise for her weight loss, telling Good Housekeeping that she is an avid tennis player and committed to her Pilates routine. But she also said she’s “weirdly healthy’ when it comes to food. I love boxing and running so that’s how I stay fit it’s something I enjoy doing at the same time.

I am very happy for Melissa for her weight loss and upcoming movie ‘Ghostbusters’, which is set to hit theaters soon. I think she is a very funny actor and a person with a great heart as well who is outgoing.  For the most part, losing weight involves finding a diet and exercise plan that works for you and sticking to it, but make the weight loss fun at the same time like Melissa.

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

Source: Brow, J. “Melissa McCarthy Drops over Fifty Pounds –Stuns at SXSW” 16 March 2015 Hollywood Life

High Intensity Workouts Better for Lowering Blood Sugar

Cardio exercise, such as biking or running, is understood to be the key to weight loss but what about high-intensity workouts? According to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, cardiovascular workouts with high-intensity may be better for your heart in lowering blood sugar and fat loss, than lower intensity workouts (Ross R, Hudson R, Stotz PJ, Lam M. 2015).

High-Intensity Workouts Better for Weight Loss

High-intensity workouts like running or boxing have been shown to help lower blood sugar levels. Photo by Sante Fe Spa

Boxing and running are my favorite cardio exercises so I often engage in high-intensity exercises when I have time after class. Researchers studied 300 abdominally obese adults to determine the separate effects of exercise amounts and intensity on glucose tolerance. Individuals were selected to perform either long, lower intensity workouts or short, high intensity workouts five times per week. They were instructed to eat a healthy diet but did not reduce caloric intake.

After 6 months, all individuals had identical reductions in waistline, but only participants in the high intensity workout group obtained reduction in 2-hour glucose levels. This means by adding more intensity to your daily weight loss routine, you can significantly lower your blood sugar levels. This is a great female fat loss tip that’s easy to implement by adding weights that gives you a more challenging workout. Men like me can add dumbbells or weights on our body suits for higher intensity.

According to Robert Ross, a researcher at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, “Higher intensity can be achieved simply by increasing the incline while walking on a treadmill or walking at a brisker pace,” Ross says. Anyone can add high intensity to their workouts and those small changes do improve your strength over time if you stay consistent.

Although high intensity exercises may have some special health benefits, this study showed that any physical activity is better than none. Individuals who exercised lost 5-6% of their body weight. I agree that health organizations should consider intensity as well, instead of issuing guidelines on the time spent while exercising for fat loss.

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

Source: Ross R, Hudson R, Stotz PJ, Lam M. Effects of Exercise Amount and Intensity on Abdominal Obesity and Glucose Tolerance in Obese Adults: A Randomized Trial. Ann Intern Med. 2015;162:325-334. doi:10.7326/M14-1189

High Fiber Diets Lead to Modest Fat Loss

Healthy diets appear difficult when we think of reducing calories to lose weight, but by adding this one type of food may be the key to improving your health and fat loss.

Dietary Fiber Leads to Fat Loss

Adding more fiber to your diet leads to modest weight loss according to a new study in the Annals of Internal Medicine 2015. ClipArt photo

According to a new study in the Annals of Internal Medicine, increasing fiber intake may be a reasonable approach for individuals who had problems with weight loss programs. Past studies show how dietary fiber can control your appetite by making you feel full, but researchers wanted to focus on the one dietary change that resulted in collateral effects (Ann Inter. Medicine 2015).

In the clinical trial, 240 adults with metabolic syndrome engaged in group and individual sessions. The group assigned to the American Heart Association (AHA) diet focused on reducing their calories and limiting saturated fat. The fiber group was only asked to consume more foods high in fiber, like whole grains and fruits, to achieve a goal of at least 30 grams of fiber each day. Neither group had to change their daily physical activity or exercise routine.

After 12 months, both groups had about the same weight loss and showed identical reductions in blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels. I was always a consumer of high fiber diets because I personally love natural fruits and vegetables. I go running about 3 times per week so adding more fiber to my diet would be great for me. “By changing one thing, people in the fiber group were able to improve their diet and lose weight and improve their overall markers for metabolic syndrome,” says study author Dr. Yunsheng Ma.

I agree that weight loss programs should begin to focus more on the good foods that improve your health rather than cutting out foods from your diet. I believe this will make it seem easier to stick to a healthy diet and reduce calories. If you love whole grains, fruits and vegetables like me, I suggest you consume more fiber in your diet for fat loss and to live healthier.

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

Source: Ma Y, Olendzki BC, Wang J, Persuitte GM, Li W, Fang H, et al. “Single-Component Versus Multicomponent Dietary Goals for the Metabolic Syndrome: A Randomized Trial.” Ann Intern Med. 2015; 162:248-257.doi: 10.7326/M14-0611

Chili Peppers May Induce Weight Loss

If you love chili peppers as a spice, it may help you lose weight as well. According to researchers at the University of Wyoming, adding capsaicin from chili peppers can help induce weight loss in mice on a high-fat diet (Biophysical Society 2015).

Chili Peppers - Weight Loss

Chili peppers contain capsaicin, a chief component that stimulates fat-burning to help you lose weight. Photo: Clipart

With nearly one-third of the world’s population being obese or overweight (World Health Organization), obesity has been a major concern for all researchers across the world. We understand that diet and exercise is the key to weight loss but new alternative discoveries seem to appear every day.

Following a restricted diet and eliminating fatty foods is tough for anyone seeking to lose weight but researchers at the University of Wyoming discovered promise in the potential of capsaicin. They found that this ingredient in chili peppers may fight obesity by stimulating energy-burning and converting white fat to brown fat. This study will be presented at the Biophysical Society’s 59th annual meeting this week.

“In our bodies, white fat cells store energy and brown fat cells serve as thermogenic (heat produced by burning fat) machinery to burn stored fat. Eating calorie-rich food and a lack of physical activity cause an imbalance in metabolism that leads to obesity”, explains Vivek Krishnan, a graduate student working in Baskaran Thyagarajan’s laboratory at the University of Wyoming’s School of Pharmacy. This basically means that brown fat cells are better because they have fat burning capabilities that help burn calories.

Researchers found that high-fat-diet obesity and dietary capsaicin –0.01 percent of capsaicin in the total high fat diet—prevented high-fat-diet induced weight gain with wild mice, but not in mice that genetically lacked transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1).

I agree with the idea that creating a natural dietary supplement to fight obesity can be simply advanced to human clinical studies. I enjoy chili peppers to add spice to my foods and if it helps burn fat as well, I will be sure to add more to my diet plan.

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

Source: “What’s next in Diets: Chili Peppers?” 8 February 2015 Biophysical Society

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