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Overcoming Weight-Loss Barriers

Allergies Add Pounds

Eating foods that you are allergic to or sensitive to will work against your best efforts at weight loss. If you're allergic to a food or are highly sensitive to it and you go ahead and eat it anyway, you'll pay the price. When you ingest a known allergen, the body gets defensive. It uses several strategies for dealing with allergens: it bloats; it refuses to digest; it might push the food through the digestive tract too quickly; it creates mucous to prevent nutrients from being absorbed in the intestines; it can wad the food into a ball in your bowel and refuse to dispel it. The body does many things with such a food—except use it for nutrition.

Many foods that cause allergies and sensitivities are common foods that are widely available and seem to be in everything edible. The most difficult to eliminate from your diet include wheat, corn, soy, and dairy.

If you suspect that you're allergic to a specific food, you can get verification from a skin test given at an allergist's office. In the meantime, give up the food. Some chiropractors and alternative health practitioners can also test for food allergies and sensitivities.

A Little Taste of Sweet


Sip on water during the day as an alternative to sipping on sweet drinks. Sweet drinks, including all diet drinks, confuse the body. Water has terrific therapeutic and health benefits. Your body loves water.

If you make a habit of sipping on sweet liquids—even artificially sweetened ones—throughout the day, you may have difficulty losing weight. Ditto eating mints or bits of candy throughout the day. This isn't really about the calories you ingest; it's more about how the sweet taste works with the digestive system.

When the tongue tastes something sweet, the body assumes that it's going to be receiving food and nutrients. It then begins to store the food it is currently digesting, turning that food into fat. After all, the body won't need the energy from the food already in the digestive process if more is on the way. The digestive system doesn't know that it's only going to get a bit of something sweet. It just does as it's programmed—it stores fat.

So, how are you going to drink sweet-tasting liquids like juice or a beverage sweetened with sugar or an artificial sweetener? Hopefully, you'll pass on the artificial sweeteners—they've been shown to thwart weight loss. Drink sweetened beverages and juice with meals or snacks. Fortunately, you don't need to be stuck with an impossible weight issue. Today, with medical advances and common sense, there are excellent solutions for tough weight-loss concerns.


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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