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Hormones, Hunger and the Ketogenic Diet

When we look back in history, we see that through the 1800’s and up into the 1950’s it was fairly common medical knowledge (and street knowledge) that if you wanted to lose weight, you cut out eating sugars and carbohydrates. Doctors would instruct their obese patients to abstain from breads, potatoes, cakes, desserts, etc., all starches and sweets, and if the patients did this they would lose weight. Quite simple and straightforward.

Then in the 1950s everything changed. For 50-plus years the American and Canadian public have been led to believe that carbohydrates and sugar are better to eat than fat and protein. This is absolutely wrong, and is all very well researched and documented in many books, magazine articles, and clinical trials. This could be called old information made new again.

The truth is that, over the last fifty years, while the public has been following government recommendations and eating more carbohydrates, sugar, and factory-produced fats (vegetable oils) and eating less natural fat, the rates of obesity, cancer, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, dementia, and many other diseases of modern civilization have increased. The proof is in the pudding.

Sugar can definitely shoulder a large part of the responsibility for the obesity epidemic. Why? Because of how it affects your hormones.

Weight loss and weight gain are all about your hormone insulin. There are some other hormones and enzymes that also have roles, but the big main player is insulin.

Eating sugar and carbohydrates causes your pancreas to promptly release insulin. And insulin causes your body to store fat. Eating protein and fat allows your insulin levels to stay low, and then fat can be burned by your body and not stored.

So, sugar and carbohydrates produce insulin, which produces fat.

One of the more fascinating pieces of information I came across in my research concerns the attitude that many people have towards obese people compared to the actual reality of obesity.

The prevailing assumption is that if overweight people would exercise more and eat less, they wouldn’t be overweight. The prescription that we write in our minds, or the actual one that many of the medical profession give to overweight people is to “EAT LESS AND MOVE MORE.” But this has had a proven failure rate of approximately 95% for 60 years or more.

On the other hand, when we eat only fats and proteins, we can eat until we are satisfied. We don’t need to count calories. You may feel like skipping meals here and there as fats and proteins take longer to digest. Skipping meals is a good thing but not a necessary thing. The longer time you have between meals, the better ketosis can work. One of the reasons for the current obesity epidemic is that nowadays we are constantly eating, eating, eating, many, many times a day.

When you go Keto, even if you skip a meal, your body still has a constant supply of food - YOUR FAT. SWEET! Bye, bye, pounds and inches.

I personally have experimented with the Keto diet, and I have been very pleased and impressed with how long a keto meal keeps hunger away and how good it feels to move beyond carb and sugar cravings.

So to sum it up, hormones tell us when we are hungry and when we are full. They tell your fat cells when to form, and when to stay and when to leave. You can make your hormones work for you by what you eat and by how much you eat and by how often you eat and by how long you go without eating. And physical activity and exercise usually produce good hormonal effects.

Should a person stay on a Ketogenic diet for life? Perhaps, if you really like it. Or you can just use it as a means to an end, to get power and control over food, eating, and your weight. There needs to be a shift in power from food having the power over you, to you having the power over food. This shift in power will keep the weight off. On a Ketogenic diet you will eventually lose some or all of your sugar and carbohydrate cravings, and that strengthens and reinforces your whole purpose and program. A Ketogenic diet can be a mind expander.

However, one of the realities of life is that any type of restrictive eating program may get boring and old. If that happens, you will still have a new nature that says, ”Whatever it takes I will give.” And you will modify things to overcome boredom, while maintaining results.

Text extracted from the book The Two Keys to Permanent Weight Loss, by Ken Flett

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