By Dr. Angela DeRosa
In my last blog, I mentioned that weight gain is tied to the quality of food you eat and not just the quantity. If you eat a lot of highly processed foods – your body is being programmed to want more food more often, simply because it’s frantically working to keep your blood sugar balanced. That’s where hormone balance comes in – so it’s important to understand how the body processes different fuels.
After eating, food (your fuel) is converted to glucose (sugar), which travels through the bloodstream to the muscles to be burned off for energy. The hormone testosterone unlocks the doorway for glucose to enter the muscles. (Yes, women have testosterone too – just in different rations than men.)
If you don’t have enough testosterone in your system, blood sugar stays high. The pancreas sends out more insulin to lower it, triggering a sudden drop. Low blood sugar produces hunger and cravings, so you eat, and the cycle of highs and lows starts over again. Eventually, your body becomes more and more insulin resistant; the liver begins to convert excess glucose into fat, and the risk of diabetes and disease rises along with your weight.
The Thyroid Factor
Thyroid hormone drives the metabolic engine, but the thyroid gland also needs testosterone to function properly. When thyroid is balanced, your body burns glucose efficiently. When it’s too high (hyperthyroidism), you burn fuel way too fast. If it gets sluggish or starts to fail (hypothyroidism) your body burns fuel very slowly. One in three women and one in five men will be hypothyroid by age fifty, so testosterone and thyroid levels should be properly tested before you begin a weight loss program.
Dr. Angela DeRosa is an author, speaker and advocate for women’s health, and the founder of MiraVita Metamorphosis physician managed weight loss programs with offices in Scottsdale, Chandler and Glendale. Call 844.MV4.LIFE or visit MiraVita.com.