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How to Lose 20 lbs of Fat this Summer & Keep it Off

I’ll start tomorrow. I’ll start Monday. I’ll start next week. Things we’ve all told ourselves when it comes to committing to weight loss. Chances are, you’ve probably lost weight before – but are finding yourself back to where you started (gulp – or maybe even heavier). Perhaps you reduced your calorie intake and started doing some cardio. It’s all about eating less and exercising more, right? Not necessarily. Especially when it comes to metabolic health and making sure you don’t gain weight back, there is more to the equation.

What is Metabolism?
This is a word that is being thrown around a lot these days, and I’m the first to admit that I originally thought of metabolism as just the rate at which people can burn fat. That’s part of it, but it is more specifically the process by which your body converts fuel (food) into the energy that your cells need. Your level of metabolic fitness is critical to your health and how you feel every day, and is the key to energy, endurance, cardiovascular health, alertness, and focus. So much more than just fat burning ability!

So is it true that we can slow down our metabolism with certain lifestyle choices? Yes! Of course there are things you can’t control, like genes and hormones. However, just because you are predisposed to a slower metabolism, doesn’t mean you can’t take steps to increase metabolic health and prevent chronic disease.

Is it also true that you can speed up your metabolism? YES!

What can slow metabolism?

  • Lack of sleep (we need 6+ hours per night, ideally 8 or more)
  • Severe diets (ketogenic dieting without the help of a coach, extreme low calorie, etc. If you are reducing the wrong types of foods in your diet and not getting adequate protein to preserve muscle, you lose it – which means you lose your ability to burn calories and fat!)
  • Diet high in saturated fat (processed and fast foods)
  • Dehydration (we need between 64 oz – half your body weight in ounces)
  • Some medications (antidepressants, hormone medications like birth control or prednisone, or medications for blood pressure/diabetes)
  • Inconsistent meal times (skipping breakfast, going more than 4 hours without eating, etc)
  • Chronic stress (puts us in the “fight or flight” mode and shuts off any unnecessary functions not needed for survival – like burning fat)

How can we increase metabolic health?

  • Strength training. Muscle uses the most energy in the body, so the more muscle you have, the more energy you use. This means weight lifting is vital – not just cardio! This may also mean that you put on some muscle weight to burn fat weight, so it is helpful to have access to a way to read body fat percentage. If you are unsure how to lift properly or where to start, I recommend hiring the help of a personal trainer. They also will help you set goals and keep you accountable.
  • Eat better!
    • Fewer simple carbs (like sugar and processed food), less saturated fat, and more quality lean protein.
    • Don’t yo-yo diet. Instead, focus on healthy lifestyle changes.
    • Eat real foods – avoid processed junk and sugar.
    • Drink water – 64 oz to half your body weight per day.
    • Eat consistently – eat a healthy, well-rounded breakfast. Bring snacks with you so you don’t go too long without eating (every 3-4 hours). Get in a schedule.
    • Protein every meal to help level blood sugar to avoid cravings.

There you have it – the two main factors that a healthy metabolism comes down to: increasing muscle mass, and eating correctly. If you are able to do these things, you will be able to lose weight and keep it off. However, every body is different – and what you do depends on your gender, age, activity level, and goals.

How do you know what eating correctly looks like for you?

The unfortunate fact is all calories are not created equal. It means we can’t use the excuse that just because food is edible, it’s nourishment. Different macronutrients are metabolized differently, and serve different purposes. Here is how I figure out how much protein, carbohydrates, and fat my clients should be shooting for:

Protein
Protein is the building block of all tissues in the body, including muscle (so you can see why it is very important that we get enough protein so we can maintain/build muscle during weight loss, instead of burning muscle).

When trying to lose weight, maintain muscle in heavy competition, or build muscle, it is advised to eat 0.6g to 0.9g of protein per pound of body weight in order to preserve your muscle mass, especially if you are very active.

The International Society of Sports Nutrition also advises that individuals engaging in endurance exercise target the lower end of this range (0.6-0.7g), individuals engaging in intermittent activities should be more toward the middle (0.7-0.8g), and those engaging in strength and power exercises should be at the upper end of this range (0.8-0.9g).

Your body weight ______ x 0.6 – 0.9 = _______g of protein per day

When you get to the weight you want to maintain, aim to ingest at least half your body weight in grams of protein per day.

Carbohydrates
Having a sufficient amount of carbohydrates improves exercise by delaying fatigue and allowing you to workout harder for longer. However, the balance is finding how many carbohydrates works for you to provide sufficient energy, yet not so much so that some is stored as fat for later use.

According to expert Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint and founder of Primal Nutrition, Inc., as well as what I’ve observed with my clients, below are general carbohydrate ranges given for the typical body. Note that this is not counting fiber, which does not affect blood sugar (subtract fiber from the total amount of carbohydrates to get the “net carb” count).

0-50g per day = nutritional ketosis (burning solely fat for energy – do a ketogenic diet when working with a professional only, otherwise going in and out of ketosis incorrectly can damage your metabolism)
50-100g per day = weight loss sweet spot
100-150g per day = weight maintenance
150-300g per day = insidious weight gain
300g+ per day = danger zone for obesity and chronic disease

Note that this provides a starting point to aim for. For women over 40 and going through menopause, we sometimes have to go into the low 50s or even ketogenic to get weight to budge. However, for younger people who are very active, 100-150g may be a weight loss zone. I suggest tracking your intake and observing your results, and tweak from there.

Fat
Fats are actually a very important part of a healthy diet. In fact, some fats even reduce the risk of heart disease. They provide essential fatty acids, promote skin health, absorb vitamins and minerals, build cell membranes, aid in blood clotting, improve muscle movement, and help decrease inflammation. Fats are also another source of energy for longer duration and more intense activity. A lack of fat will prevent important hormones (such as steroid hormones that control how the body responds to high energy demands, maintain mineral balance, and drive muscle growth) from being in balance.

At a minimum, we need about 10 percent of our calories to come from fat, and the AHA recommends that fat should make up 20 to 35 percent of our food intake. While most Americans get 34 percent or more, they are often not the healthy kind. When filling in your fat intake for the day, focus on unsaturated fats as a majority (such as olive oil, nuts and seeds, nut butters, avocado, olives, and fatty fish), natural saturated fats in moderation (fatty meats, dairy, cheese, and coconut oil), and avoid trans fats (processed food, commercially baked pastries, and fried food).

How can you track these numbers without looking every single food you eat up on online? Download an app like My Fitness Pal or Lose It to easily select the foods and serving sizes, and it automatically fills in the rest. These apps will also give you a daily breakdown of how many calories, protein, carbs, and fat you consumed.

As a certified health coach and personal trainer, I’ve helped hundreds of frustrated people reach their goals with this information. However, every body is different, and it is hard to generalize what will work for each person. I’ve found the most effective way to have results is to work with a professional who can help you navigate your situation, as well as hold you accountable.

If that sounds like something you might be interested in, you’re in luck! Schedule a FREE 30-minute health coaching call with me, certified holistic health coach and personal trainer, by following my blog!

We will have a friendly dialogue about your current lifestyle and goals, and I’ll give you some suggestions on how to achieve success (the same I give to my paying clients!). In addition to providing assistance with weight loss, maintenance, or muscle gain; I can help you know how to increase energy and quality of sleep; as well as understanding your relationship with food and exercise, and which foods and activities are right for you.

So why wait? Sign up on the side bar! After you sign up, I’ll send you an email with my open time slots in the next few days. In the meantime, think about the following:

  • What is your definition of true health and wellness?
  • What area(s) of your life would you most want to improve?
  • What do you want to accomplish in the next week? Month? Year?

These are some questions I’ll be asking during our call so I can best meet your needs. (Or even just good things to think about.)

OR

If you are looking for a program that already puts you in the fat burning sweet spot without you having to even think about it, check out The Metabolic Shift program. It’s the only structured weight loss program I’ve found that I can get behind, because it truly works to improve your metabolic health in the process. Plus you don’t have to cut out any food groups, it’s flexible enough to fit any lifestyle, and it’s EASY! No having to count macros or worry about hours of food prep every week. Plus I include custom workouts and additional coaching so you understand why you are eating this way and how to maintain the weight you’ve lost. Did I mention they have a 90-day money-back guarantee, so you are promised success or YOUR FULL MONEY BACK? What do you have to lose? (Besides those extra few pounds) 😉

For more testimonials and information about the program, click here!

Make the Shift with the Only Structured Weight Loss Program I Believe In

What if you found an easy-to-follow weight loss program that leaves your metabolism and body in a healthier state than before? Where you are burning only fat and maintaining your muscle, you have more energy, fewer cravings, and your body recovers faster from a custom workout you just completed from your trainer via your phone?

I started implementing The Metabolic Shift with my clients and have seen amazing results! It’s guided program, so you barely have to meal plan, which is perfect for busy people (and we all are- aren’t we?). Yet, it provides the flexibility so the plan can fit your lifestyle. PLUS I’ve started including online workouts and coaching calls at NO ADDITIONAL COST!

Average weekly weight loss: women 2-3 lbs of fat / men 3-5 lbs of fat*

What’s included:

  • Univera’s Metabolic Shift Deluxe Pack (https://www.newunivera.com/…/pr…/metabolic-shift-deluxe-pack)
  • Three 30-minute health coaching calls to ensure success
  • Nutritional guidelines, as well as macro suggestions and tweaks as-needed based on your results
  • Two vegan meal-replacement shakes per day (chocolate or vanilla), as well as access to other quality high protein, low carbohydrate foods
  • Custom workouts based on your schedule and equipment (even if you’re working out from home)
  • Easy-to-use platform to upload progress photos, measurements, weigh ins, and more to track results
  • In-app messaging for easy communication and support from me, certified personal trainer and health coach

Testimonials:**

Nutritionist Suzan Zeiger interviews Kathleen Blanchette about how she lost 20 POUNDS IN ONE MONTH!

“This is the easiest thing, and it works. You do the minimum input, and get maximum results. It really is amazing. I’m less sore, I feel better, I sleep better. Keeping track of your body composition is key, because even though I didn’t want to weigh in after going to Portland and San Francisco, I was shocked at how well I still did. It keeps you honest.” – Megan A.

“Two pant sizes down since starting THE SHIFT a month ago, I’m so excited for what’s to come! I feel energized, no more grab bars in ladies room (TMI), and I wake up ready to take on my day versus going back to bed until 12noon.” ― “Drea” Cooper Goldstein, Independent Univera Associate and National Compliance Manager

“I started this challenge not knowing if it would work, but I was shocked by how much progress I saw every week. The shakes have a lot of protein so you are full for awhile, and I think all the supplements really helped my energy, especially the Aloe and Xtra. I’ll continue to drink those every day. The workouts were also key and really helped me.” -Heather L.

“I felt horrible and suffered from constant joint discomfort because my immune system is attacking its own tissues. I was recommended to use a lot of different western medicine approaches and tried all kinds of supplements.
I’m 45 pounds leaner since starting Univera Metabolic Makeover in January, and learning to track macros. I’m active again and have been gaining control of my nutrition and eating habits!”
― Javier Gonzalez, Independent Univera Associate and Companion Home Provider

“I’ve been taking the same dosage medication to increase metabolic function for a medical condition I’ve had for 17 years, and this year my doctor cut it in half as a result of having been on the products for about 10 weeks. It made a huge difference in terms of the effectiveness of my metabolism. My body mass has changed – I have a far more productive muscle mass which is huge in terms of metabolic function. My husband also uses the products, and it has definitely improved joint function.” – Susan M.

“Since my sister gifted me Univera products, I feel naturally energized and am achieving new levels of fitness and vitality I thought were impossible! A total of 70 pounds are gone forever, 40 of those since June, and I feel hopeful that this is just a starting point.” ― Angela Shaughnessy, Independent Univera Associate, Finance and Administrative Consultant

“I’m someone who is very type A and need structure, so if you give me a list of things I need to follow I’m going to follow it to a ‘T’ and not deviate, and that’s when I saw the most results. I’ve been a yo-yo dieter in the past with low-calorie diets where you feel like you are literally eating bites of almonds all day long, but with this I feel satisfied because of the protein I’m eating more regularly. It’s convenient, I don’t have to think about what I’m going to eat in the day; and also, the protein has me feeling satiated enough so I’m not going to bed hungry.” – Melanie B.

“A Holiday Caribbean Cruise my husband and I planned inspired my Metabolic Shift. With a proven program and coaching, my blood glucose level dropped 15 points AND I felt the confidence to wear a bikini again for the first time in 10 years in my 50’s!” ― Laurie Andries, Independent Univera Associate

The retail cost for this program is $439 per month, plus tax and shipping – and typically doesn’t come with workouts or additional coaching…

However, by signing up with me, I can give you 20% off, FREE shipping, and a 90-day money-back guarantee… plus the workouts and coaching at no additional cost!

The breakdown:

Metabolic Shift Deluxe Pack with Meal Replacement Shakes = $11.96 per day, or $5.98 per meal (you will be replacing two thirds of your grocery bill!)
Three 30-minute coaching calls (1 per month – $120 value) = FREE!
Access to Trainerize app = FREE!
Custom workouts ($360+ value) = FREE!
Nutrition plan, guidance, accountability & progress check ins ($240 value) = FREE!

You get it all for $359 + tax per month!

And if you are still worried about the cost, you can get the ENTIRE program for free if 4 friends join you ($179 credit each month after the first, plus up to $285 cash back)!

Email me today at katieslhargrave@gmail.com to receive a copy of the nutrition guidelines and/or to get set up!

Still hesitant? What’s holding you back?

No time to meal prep, for lengthy workouts, or to get to the gym at all?

— The Metabolic Shift is an easy-to-follow nutrition plan with two meal replacement shakes per day, which takes the worry and thought out of preparing all your meals in advance. Plus the workout app provides a way for me to give you workouts based on your schedule and equipment (even if you are working out from home)!

Can’t afford a nutritionist, trainer, gym membership, plus all the healthy food to lose weight?
— The Metabolic Shift replaces two meals per day, cutting down your grocery bill. You have a health coach and trainer at your fingertips, plus if you get 4 friends to join you, you get the program for free.

Need a plan to follow, but also want a little flexibility?
— The Metabolic Shift offers guidelines of what foods to include in your day, but the structure varies based on what works for you. Plus I’m available to help you customize your plan based on your results to ensure you are seeing progress.

Unsure of what exercises to do lose weight efficiently?
— I’m a certified personal trainer, and will be giving you workouts based on your goals, equipment, and schedule – available all from your phone so you can do them anywhere.
Need accountability to be successful? — You will be able to check off your workouts, track your food intake, submit your measurements and weigh ins, as well as progress photos all on one platform.

Have a medical condition that makes weight loss difficult?
— The Metabolic Shift is clinically proven to help the body manage glucose levels, keep you feeling full, support digestive and cardiovascular health, and provide the body with energy, antioxidant protection, and mental clarity. Message me to talk more about your struggles and how Univera can help.

Feel like you’ve tried everything and nothing has worked?
— With The Metabolic Shift, you have nothing to lose. With their 90-day money-back guarantee, you will get a full refund if you don’t get the results you want.

To see the full nutrition guidelines, or to get set up, email me at katieslhargrave@gmail.com TODAY!

*Results may vary.
**These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

10 Banned Ingredients Every American Should Beware

My purpose in posting this infographic isn’t to scare people out of eating food, but to inform on what ingredients to watch out for when you are at the grocery store. What also caught my eye is one of the ingredients on the list, BVO, is found in Gatorade and Powerade – the most common electrolyte replacement choice that athletes make. Yet another reason to stay away from those sugar-filled, artificially colored drinks!

Embed from Getty Images

One of the general rules I tell my clients is to stick with whole foods as much as possible (and when it comes to meat – organic and free-range). If you follow that rule, you will eliminate most of these toxins.

At a glance, these ingredients are:

  • Farm-raised fish and meat from Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs).
  • Genetically engineered fruits and vegetables.
  • Bromated Vegetable Oil (BVO) – originally used as a flame retardant and found in many sodas and sports drinks.
  • Artificial food colors and dyes (Red 40, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 2, etc).
  • Potassium Bromate (typically found in bread).
  • Olestra/Olean (found in chips and french fries).
  • Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) and Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) – preservatives found in some beer, cereal, butter, nuts, meat, and chewing gum.
  • The synthetic version of the natural bovine hormone rBGH that increases milk production in cows.

For more information on these ingredients, their health risks, and where they are banned, read below.

Infographic taken from the Food Revolution Network.