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Hidden Barriers to Fat Burning

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Let’s assume you are doing everything right—your eating habits are perfect and your exercise is consistent and correct for your body type. But, you’re not losing weight. Is there something else you should be doing?

When a patient comes to me and seems to be doing everything right but still, is not getting results, I first check on anything that could be increasing cortisol, a hormone that causes weight gain. Likely culprits are lack of sleep, pain in the body, stressful environment, or even hot flashes. I encourage my patients to do everything they can to reduce these factors. I generally will also look at the medication the patient is on, as some medications may not only prevent weight loss but also cause weight gain. But, even if you discover that your medications are stalling your weight loss, be sure to check with your doctor before coming off any meds.

The medications that often cause weight gain are as follows:
1. Insulin.
2. Prednisone.
3. Hormonal Replacement Therapy and Birth Control Pills.
4. Diuretics.
5. High blood pressure meds.
6. High cholesterol meds.
7. And especially psychiatric medication—Prozac, Zoloft, etc.

I try to find out what problem the individual is trying to solve with regard to the medication(s) he/she is taking. In some instances, such as with hot flashes, some inflammation or depression, I might be able to work with the individual’s primary care doctor as a member of his/her health care team. I can often get the doctor’s permission to use natural remedies as opposed to prescription medications. In the best case scenario, this approach works very well because the patient then gets the supervision of a team of health professionals. and the natural remedies we use have no side effects.

After I’ve checked for cortisol triggers and medications, I make sure there are NO sugar alcohols or artificial sweeteners in the patient’s diet. These can cause major water weight accumulation.

Other barriers to fat burning could be flavored yogurt, sugar in salad dressing, MSG in restaurant foods, or too many “occasional” junk foods. Often, when I ask about junk foods, I hear “It’s just a little bit.” But that little bit is enough to prevent reaching the goal.

So, uncover those barriers to fat burning, get healthy, lose weight, and feel great!

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