March Healthy Tips: The Hidden Cause of Weight Gain

by guest contributors Barbara Swanson & Mark Segars

In America, well over 1 in 3 adults are overweight. We all know that overeating processed, nutrient-depleted foods is a cause of obesity, as is a lack of exercise. But a hidden cause, even in those with good diets and active lifestyles, is exposure to toxins. Both internal and external chemicals contribute to weight gain.

The Process
Because we create toxins as a byproduct of metabolism, the body has a lot of systems in place to remove them on a daily basis. These include our kidneys, liver, large intestine, lungs and skin. But when these channels fail, or are over-stressed, then we need another way to get the toxic trash out of our circulation and away from key organs.

One way the body does this is by increasing fat cells. A body with too many toxins to safely process and eliminate, makes new fat cells to store those toxins in them.

This process is:
1)  A form of self-defense against being poisoned
2)  A strategy to get toxins out of the circulation and away from major organs.

This means that some people will not be able to lose weight, regardless of how little they eat, until their internal toxic overload is addressed.

A Toxic World
The modern world is polluted with unprecedented amount of toxins. Air, water and soil are contaminated by thousands of tons of herbicides, pesticides and toxic waste residue from dozens of industries. And there are internal toxins–those we create via metabolism. Stress hormones are linked to weight gain. One of the most important causes of weight gain are bad gut bacteria. An overgrowth of bad bacteria within the digestive tract stimulates the formation of new fat cells and promotes weight gain.

HOW TO REMOVE TOXINS (and maybe lose weight!)

The following helps you remember how we cleanse on a daily basis.

Drink enough pure water. 
ALL our cleansing systems rely on water to function. While losing weight, this is even more important. Drink ½ your body weight, in ounces. Mild and appropriate herbal teas (peppermint is fantastic) are fine to use as well. Example: A 120 lb person needs 60 ounces of water. Make it simple: Fill three 25 ounce bottles daily.

Watch what you eat.
Ingested toxins which are proven to lead to weight gain include artificial sweeteners, preservatives, hydrogenated oils and refined sugars. Eat whole foods, which are nutrient and fiber-rich. Fiber is a broom, cleaning out toxins and metabolic debris. The nutrients in whole fresh fruits and vegetables support your entire body and enhance healthy weight loss and maintenance.

Move your body. 
Whether you dance at home or in a club, run or walk, or use a sauna, working up some sweat helps remove specific toxins that are otherwise trapped in the skin and circulatory system.

Take deep breaths.
Exercise helps us breathe more effectively, but even 30-60 seconds of deep breathing, a few times a day, helps remove carbon dioxide, pushes oxygen to the brain and enhances overall body health.

Use a great supplement program.
Probiotics can help support immune health, and produce chemicals that help us remove toxins. Antioxidants can help neutralize internal toxins and protect cell function. And other micronutrients are essential for healthy cell function on all levels. We like this supplement program that includes lots of nutrients and micronutrients, antioxidants, probiotics and more.

The Bottom Line
Make these simple changes–drink more water, eat great whole foods, move more and breathe more deeply; and you may find stubborn pounds finally melting off!

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