Category Archives: Blood

Successful Weight Loss Based in Blood Chemistry Fuel

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Eat less processed foods and more whole foods.

Updated 16 December 2016,                    by Marc Woodard

Doctor’s and Dieticians tell us to limit bad fats “saturated (animal products, meat, eggs, etc.) including Trans fats, which also correlates with bad LDL cholesterol and plaque buildup in the arteries.”  Both of these fats are associated with risk for cardiovascular heart disease.  Also diabetics are at great risk for heart attack or stroke.

However, too little saturated fat in the diet replaced by carbohydrates is causing an epidemic of obesity and many secondary health issues.  The more saturated fat in a diet, the less likely men will have an incident of stroke and heart disease in post menstrual women.  There is a balance of dietary fats necessary in the diet to maintain good health for men and women.

It appears saturated fats are necessary in the diet because when animal products are consumed this increases HDL’s (the good cholesterol) when metabolized and  also lowers triglycerides.

High carbohydrate intake appears to be a big part of the health risk issue when out of balance in the diet.  It appears the body chemistry requires a certain amount of saturated fats (not manmade Tran’s fats).  And complete avoidance of animal fats does not seem to be a good ideal as far as the body chemistry is concerned.  Science can not accurately tell us the perfect diet.  But it is overwhelmingly apparent you are better off with a “low carbohydrate diet as opposed from animal product avoidance all together.

One big common denominator we did not have when I was a kid was obesity run amok.   Nor do I remember many fast food chains.  We certainly didn’t have energy and diet drinks like we have today.  The fast and convenient foods of the 70’s I recall was McDonald’s, Dairy Queen and KFC.  There was one artificial sweetener I recall [saccharine], and a few artificial flavorings and preservatives in products.

Everything else seemed pretty natural.  Even the Swanson TV dinners, meat pot pies tasted pretty good back then.  And the other thing I remember as a kid, most of the dinner meals consisted mostly of meat, chicken, fish, potatoes and vegetables and a lot of casseroles made out the same staples.   And almost everyone around us had gardens and canned fruits and vegetables.

In today’s marketplace everything has changed to quicker, cheaper, convenient processed foods with lots of chemical ingredients in them.  Be sure to read “Restaurant Foods Healthy?”  If you haven’t read this article, you really need to.  Many restaurant chains serve processed everything.  “That’s why you can’t quit eating at these food places you’re addicted to the food chemicals!”

Also back then we rarely heard about heart disease, strokes, diabetes, cancer, etc., compared to today.  And to see an obese kid back then was really rare.  Today, I see kids while I’m on my daily walks that appear to have body fat typical to those in of my age (25-45%).  The kids I’m talking about appear to be around 25-60%.   I fear our children will experience an epidemic of illness/disease pain and suffering not seen in of our generation when they reach our age.

Now when I look at food and blood chemical science; including my consumption exercise lifestyle today I note the following.  My habits have not changed much from when I was a kid.  For example, I exercise daily through various activity and still consume mostly a meat, potato, chicken, fish and vegetable diet.  However, I do consume the occasional fast food, or additional carbohydrates when pasta’s, breads, chips, soda craving strikes, but not often.  I also did not consume a lot of deserts as a kid.  I guess that’s why I don’t really crave them.  But when I do eat deserts, I do enjoy them.  Of course, when processed foods are so abundant in our marketplace a little bit is going to get incorporated into the diet.  And this requires awareness, especially if one is experiencing weight loss difficulties.

I attribute my good blood chemistry results to my childhood eating habits.  I eat more organic protein type food sources than carbohydrates.  My blood chemistry reflects a High HDL count (good cholesterol), Low LDL count (bad cholesterol) and low triglycerides (read  “Why you should be concerned about triglycerides“).  My eating habits are still predominately high intake of proteins (40-50%), carbohydrates (20-30%) and fats (~25%).

I know if I cut the carbohydrates in half and increased the proteins my blood chemistry would support lowering my body fat weight over a long period of time.  “I would lose weight slow and safe, not fast like extreme dieting.”  I know this because I’ve experimented with blood chemistry lab results and body weight [used as a baseline] and compared those results later.

I’ve changed my fuel mix and exercise habits based on these results to lose and maintain stable weight.  I also use a weight scale every other day and base my weight loss success on how my clothes fit.  If you’re eating and exercising correctly you’ll lean out safely while losing body fat without breaking your metabolisms regulatory mechanisms.

Exercise is an important component to a successful weight loss.  Regardless of age, this is a fact.  The human body is designed to walk in order to accomplish all tasks necessary in life.  And to quit walking and become a couch potato is the worst habit you could get yourself into.  If I didn’t participate in daily exercise activity it would be more challenging to maintain ideal body weight no matter how I balanced my diet because of age, lifestyle habits and slower metabolism.  Balanced consumption and exercise activity go hand in hand.

Reference

Learn About Triglycerides and Levels

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2010 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.org,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.

Why Should You be Concerned about Triglycerides?

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Q.   What are Triglycerides, should I be concerned?   I received my blood test last week and my triglyceride count was 184.  I was told this is average for my age.  I also had another friend of mine tell me this is high.  I’m not sure I understand what this means to my health.  Can you help provide a little insight?

A.    In a world where everyone is pinched for time; meal preparations within most family units now rely heavily on processed foods for convenience.  Our country has an obesity epidemic in mass proportions occurring especially seen within our children.  It is my opinion triglycerides should be as concerning to an individual that watches their cholesterol intake.  If you are concerned about your cholesterol also take stock of your triglyceride count.   Before I answer your question directly, let me provide a brief outline of what triglycerides represent to our health and why we should care about them.

Triglycerides are a type of fat in your blood much like cholesterol.   Neither one of these fats can dissolve in the blood.  Both fats use lipoproteins to circulate these fats throughout the body to be used by the metabolism.  Cholesterol function is to build cells and various hormones.  Triglyceride function is to provide the body with energy.   However, too much (high levels) of either of these blood fats for long periods of time create health risk and disease.  High triglycerides like cholesterol is thought to cause, or contribute to hardening of the arteries, or increasing the artery wall thickness (atherosclerosis).  Most of us know these conditions can lead to stroke, heart attack and heart disease.  High triglycerides also may trigger diabetes,  or create disease in the thyroid, liver and kidney.  Suspect you may have high triglyceride levels in your blood if you have too much fat around the waist.  “More often than not,” obesity and disease have a direct correlation with high triglycerides, high cholesterol, High blood sugar (glucose) and high blood pressure.  Check your “health risk” to potential disease by entering your weight/height into our fitness calculator at our healthblog page tab (click on the Fitness Calculator Link).

Without a blood test to indicate your level of triglycerides, one may suspect an elevation of the two blood fats if you typically over consume without regard to food intake.  This is not to say one consumes more, or less fatty, or cholesterol type foods.  Blood counts could be inverted.  In other words, you may watch your cholesterol, but because of other food choices, or hormone inefficiencies, consumption of triglycerides in your foods, or hormones don’t store blood fats adequately which can create a constant elevation of  triglycerides above normal levels (hypertriglyceridemia).

Although I believe your triglyceride levels appear decent opposed to many other counts I have seen, the normal level within the medical community sees a normal triglyceride level to be less than 150mg/dl.   Your count of 184 is considered “Borderline High 150 to 199 mg/dl.  High 200 to 499mg/dl, Very High 500mg/dl or above. Note:  Prescriptions can elevate your triglyceride levels, such as birth control pills, diuretics, steroids and breast cancer drug Tamoxifen, etc. 

 RECOMMENDATIONS:

 1.  Maintain “Ideal Body Weight,” Use our Fitness Calculator at home site to determine your IBW.

2.  Reduce excess calorie consumption, especially baked goods, processed foods, sugar, white flour. 

3.  Reduce trans fats found in many baked goods, cooking, crackers, chips, snack cakes etc.  Note – Just because a product states low trans fat there is still trans fat in most of these types of foods!  Even low level trans fat consumption could increase risk of disease.

4.  Avoid Alcohol.

5.  Exercise aerobically at least 30 minutes daily.

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2008 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing, www.mirrorathlete.org,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.