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Taking Supplements for Weight Loss


You must have the proper electrolyte balance in your body to get all the value from the water you drink. Jane, in her 30s, was constantly thirsty and drank water all day long. She carried a water bottle with her wherever she went. When she had her body-fat percentage measured, she was startled to learn that she was dehydrated! How could that be? Jane's electrolytes were out of balance. Basically, no amount of water was going to get her fully re-hydrated.

You obtain electrolytes from your food, but it's possible to be depleted from sweating due to exercise, exposure to heat from the sun or saunas, or health conditions such as vomiting or diarrhea.

Sports drinks contain electrolytes, but many come with a price tag of high-glycemic sugars such as high-fructose corn syrup. You don't want to drink a beverage for electrolytes and in the process trigger an overload of insulin that stores fat. That wouldn't help much. Avoid sports drinks, which are typically high-glycemic. Instead, mix a packet of Emergen-C, which is available in health-food stores, in water.

If It's Green, It's Good


One client baked bread every day and was continually exposed to yeast spores. She had yeast growth throughout her body and on her skin. She didn't want to stop baking bread because it was an activity she did with her husband. So she started taking a greens drink and within a couple of weeks had lost a dress size. Her skin rashes cleared up, as did her yeast overgrowth.

Many people who struggle to lose weight have recurrent yeast overgrowth problems. If you're a woman, you know whether you have the obvious vaginal yeast infection. But you can have yeast infections in your bowels, ears, and plenty of other places in your body. Many people struggle with these for years. Some go on the recommended yeast-free diets for years and still have yeast overgrowth. Many take prescription medications continually.

When a person can eliminate yeast overgrowth syndrome it's easier to lose weight. Our clients have experienced terrific success by drinking greens formulations. These powders are filled with good-for-you green things such as chlorella, spirulina, barley grass, wheat grass, and other nutrients. In addition to supplying phytonutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins, the drinks make the body slightly alkaline. Since yeast grows best in an acidic body environment, the alkalinity helps kill off the yeast, freeing you up to lose weight.

Many experts believe the body is healthiest when it is slightly alkaline rather than acidic. Mix the greens powder with water, hold your nose if you need to, and drink.

It Went In, But Did It Do Any Good?

The better your digestion, the easier it is to be at your ideal size. Unfortunately, good digestion isn't always a sure thing. Digestion becomes impaired by stress, and our digestive efficiency declines with age. It can also be harmed by other health and lifestyle factors. You don't want to miss one single nutrient from the food you eat. Plus, proper and complete digestion can also reduce food and sugar cravings. So what can you do?

If you feel that your digestion is not ideal, digestive enzyme supplements may help. Many brands and formulations of digestive enzymes are available, and you want to take one that assists with protein, fat, and carbohydrate digestion. Only take digestive enzymes with meals. Experiment with different brands and formulations until you find one that works for you.

If your intestinal flora is weak, you won't be able to assimilate nutrients well. Your “gut” needs a healthy stock of active bacteria. Without it, you could have diarrhea, constipation, or yeast overgrowth syndrome. Supplement with acidophilus-type supplements that contain active cultures.

Other Supplements Might Help

At one time or another it seems that every dietary supplement is claimed to assure weight loss. Here's a list of some that could help. But they aren't miraculous; they might simply aid your body in getting the nutrients it needs to lose weight.

  • Conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA. This is a fatty acid that occurs naturally in meat, whole milk, and full-fat dairy products. This acid has been shown to promote the body's use of stored fat for energy and reduces the body's ability to store fat. It can be purchased as gel capsules. But if you eat meat and/or full-fat dairy products, you probably already consume adequate amounts.

  • Free-form amino acids. If you eat complete high-quality protein at each meal, you already consume adequate amino acids. But if you eat as a vegetarian, an amino acid formula could be great for your health.

  • Kelp, dulce, or bladderwrack are high in iodine, so if you're deficient in iodine, these could assist your thyroid in functioning better. But note: few people today are deficient in iodine, as it's added to salt and found in sea salt.

  • Green tea contains caffeine and antioxidant catechins that promote thermogenesis. Drink three cups a day. It can be helpful if included in a healthy weight-loss program.

Eating natural unprocessed foods and taking healthful dietary supplements contribute to your overall health and may support your body in releasing fat. But it's unrealistic to hope that any single supplement can undo the overeating you've done for years.

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Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Healthy Weight Loss © 2005 by Lucy Beale and Sandy G. Couvillon. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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