Inspired living

Hormones and weight loss for spring

Fresh vegetables and dip

Hormones are often a hidden reason why people have difficulty losing weight. There is more to losing weight than just exercising and sticking to a healthy diet. For optimum weight loss we have to activate certain hormones in the body which are the T3 and T4 hormones released from your thyroid. These help get your metabolism to get moving and when these are out of sync it is difficult for your body to break down food properly. Couple that with oestrogen and testosterone not working properly and often, especially in females, iron deficiency and the weight loss process slows right down. Other crucial hormones for weight loss are insulin, glucagon, and cortisol.

Overeating is a big problem for many people and can often be handled better by sticking to a diet which involves eating more protein. Leptin is a hormone that tells your brain you are full, so helping you stop eating sooner and avoid over eating, and protein helps your brain become more sensitive to leptin. Fatty processed foods can cause inflammation in the brain thus causing leptin to be less effective which can cause you to eat more, even when you are not really hungry. Leptin is produced while you are sleeping and anything less than 6 hours may mean that there isn’t enough of this hormone being produced. This will make it less effective in communication with your brain. Your body will do this on purpose so you will eat more in order to make up for the lack of sleep and energy. This is not what you want when you are trying to lose weight.

Leptin is a hormone that helps you to stop eating sooner and avoid over eating.

Ironically when trying to lose weight it is important to eat regular, proper portioned meals as these will help activate your hormones. Skipping meals will have the opposite effect and slow your metabolism down.

Also what you eat is a deciding factor in weight loss. For example eating less sugar is important as the hormone insulin helps to clear the excess sugar from your blood in the digestion process. If there is too much sugar the insulin doesn’t work properly and this can lead to diabetes which is really insulin sensitivity.

Further to this it needs to be noted that stress can keep that weight on. Oxytocin is a hormone that helps with relaxation and reduce stress. Being stressed can lead to bad habits, eating too many over processed foods, over eating and not exercising. Exercise is important and lifting weights can be an effective exercise in weight loss. It produces testosterone which helps build muscle meaning you lose fat. It is also important to reduce your stress and increase your oxytocin levels. This can easily be done by spending some time with your pets, sharing hugs and even simple breathing. Breathing exercises also helps to boost adrenaline which increases your metabolism.

So now that springtime is on its way perhaps it’s time to pull out those running shorts, head down to the gym, buy some organic veggies for some salads, get some yummy protein, review your supplement intake and start looking at how you can get fit to enjoy the upcoming summer.



Jenetta Haim runs Stressfree Management at 36 Gipps Road, Greystanes, and specialises in assisting your health and lifestyle in all areas by developing programs on either a corporate or personal level to suit your needs. Jenetta has just published a book called Stress-Free Health Management, A Natural Solution for Your Health available from your favourite bookstore or online. For more information and to get in touch, visit her website.