Are your genes affecting your weight and your health? Are you on a diet but still can’t lose weight? What’s going on, is it your fault or your genes’ fault?
Being proactive is very important, especially as we age. Yes, our genes play a big role as we age, but the good news is that we can alter the expression of our genes. Here are some examples of how this works:
– Person 1: father has hypertension. Gentically speaking, Person 1 is more susceptible to develop hypertension than a person who doesn’t have hypertension running in his/her family.
– Person 2: no hypertension running in his/her family. Genetically speaking, Person 2 is less susceptible to develop hypertension than Person 1.
Lifestyle example #1:
Person 1 eats junk foods regularly, smokes, and rarely exercises. Overweight or not, this person is “helping” his/her genes to express the same way it did for his/her father. HYPERTENSION is almost CERTAIN for this person, as this person ages.
Lifestyle example #2:
Person 1 eats a clean diet full of fruits and vegetables, exercises regularly, and doesn’t smoke. Overweight or not, this person is being PROACTIVE and doing all of the things that goes against how his/her genes are programmed to perfom. This person is altering the expression of his/her genes when it comes to hypertension, therefore hypertension is VERY UNLIKELY to develop for this person.
Lifestyle example #3:
Person 2 eats junk foods regularly, smokes, and rarely exercises. Overweight or not, this person is doing all of the things that goes against how his/her genes are programmed to perfom. This person is altering the expression of his/her genes when it comes to hypertension and hypertension is VERY LIKELY to develop for this person – EVEN THOUGH there are no genes for hypertension in his/her family.
Lifestyle example #4:
Person 2 eats a clean diet full of fruits and vegetables, exercises regularly, and doesn’t smoke. Besides not having the genes for hypertension, this person being proactive. His/her chances to develop hypertension is close to ZERO.
(These examples can apply to ANY and ALL diseases, such as diabetes, osteoporosis, hyper or hypothyroidism, osteo and rheumatoid arthritis, MS, heart diseases, cholitis, depression, cancer, etc.. as you know, the list is LONG!)
Do you see how being proactive is so important as we age? Do you see how WEIGHT has nothing to do with our “fate”? In fact, our genes play only a 10% (TEN percent) role when it comes to our “fate”. The other 80% is diet, and the left over 10% is exercise (even though by exercising we can speed up the recovery process of our genes).
This is why I always say that HEALTH should be people’s number ONE priority. NOT the number they see on the scale.
Too much fat accumulates inflammation in the body, causing different sickness and disease in people such as diabetes, hypertension, etc . Also, too little fat in the body can cause many other different sickness, such as heart problems, hormone imbalances, depression, etc. But tell me a time when you ever met a healthy person who is either over – or under – weight…
Usually the diets we see being advertised give what our population want: fast results. On this day and age this means lose weight fast to LOOK the way you want, and FAST! Of course that’s appealing, right?
But let’s think together: is it HEALTHY to eat a diet that consists mostly of proteins and fats like bacon, fried foods, butter, meats (even the “leanest” slice of salmon or turkey will contain saturated fats that clog arteries if over consumed), eggs, whole milk, etc, JUST so that you can lose weight fast by eating very little carbohydrates and stay in ketosis? Did you know that DIABETIC people HAVE to take insulin because their bodies gravitate towards being in ketosis naturally since they can’t use glucose (carbs) like a person who doesn’t have diabetes? If staying on a ketogenic diet is so healthy like so many people claim it to be, why on Earth are doctors prescribing insulin to diabetics to balance ketones in their bodies?
Let’s think even further: what do you think a person who is genetically predisposed to having diabetes (diabetes run in his/her family) is doing to their bodies/health/genes by being on a ketogenic diet? Yes, they are encouraging their genes to express themselves the way it happened to the members of their family.
There are also the other diets that consist of “points”. It doesn’t matter WHAT you put in your mouth, as long as you don’t go over a certain amount of points per day. Now they even have such thing as “Zero Point Foods”, foods that you can eat without counting points. Even more interesting is that some of those “Zero point foods” are foods like eggs and salmon… you may lose weight, but how will that EVER be HEALTHY? How are your genes, physical, and mental health going to react to that lifestyle?
What about those other “health and fitness” corporations that sell replacement meals? So you substitute a meal with a shake of some sort. Do you even know what you are drinking/eating?? Because I’ll tell you one thing: those “shakes” are FAR from being healthy, no matter what or how much they try to tell you otherwise (that’s called marketing). Those “big corporation shakes” that they call “meals” are packed with ingredients that you can barely even spell; or they have a ton of preservatives, chemicals, toxins, etc… If they were so “natural” like they claim to be, you would be able to buy the ingredients at your local store and make them yourself, spending a fraction of the price for them.. So, what are those meal replacement shakes, bars, or whatever, doing to your health?
A healthy lifestyle will make you lose weight naturally. This healthy lifestyle is one that works according to YOUR bio-individuality, YOUR lifestyle, and YOUR genes!
Just to give you a quick example, because I have hypothyroidism and that condition runs in my family, I made changes to my lifestyle so that my genes cannot express the way they “want”, and I don’t have to take medications that will give me side effects. So what is healthy FOR ME and MY genes? Consistently eating bananas, chia seeds, flax seeds, among other things, as well as staying completely away from raw spinach, raw broccoli, strawberries, cow’s milk, fried foods, among other things.
Spinach, broccoli, strawberries etc are very healthy for many people, but NOT for me. Trust me, I’ve tried, and tried, and tried eating things on my list of “what not to eat” many times, and they have always given me the same results. If I eat those things my body will become inflamed and I will start accumulating fat. The reason for this is because fat is also a protection mechanism that our bodies have to store energy.
Since we spend a lot of extra energy when we are trying to heal, our bodies store energy as fat easier… Have you noticed that you usually gain weight when you are recovering from an injury, sickness, untreated disease, and even after surgery? It’s not because you couldn’t hit the gym due to your condition (remember, exercise plays only a 10% role in weight loss/gain) but because your body is more efficient in turning anything you eat as fat, for YOUR OWN GOOD. And as you heal, the fat melts off.
So as people choose to do those diets, fads, etc, (unknownly thinking that they will be healthy once they lose weight – it’s really not the consumer’s fault!) and go against how their bodies and genes are predisposed to react to those things, they will end up sick in the long hall, and that sickness will have their bodies accumulate fat. So… what’s the point?
I just wish, sincerely, that people would think of their health before they thought of their weight, and would stop assimilating health with weight loss. I wish that the big corporations, diet books writers, fad developers, etc were more interested in making people healthy and not so interested in delivering fast results, just because that’s what people have in mind first. They give you what you want, not what you need to become what you want.
The interesting part to this is: Things only last long-term when we have the tools to keep it that way. Getting what you want is like buying a slice of fish. Getting what you need is like learning to fish yourself. You will never run out of what you want when you have what you need.
If you have made it this far reading this post, it means that you DO want to become conscious about what works for you and what makes YOUR BODY to perform at its best, long-term. So, before you go jumping into another fad, or diet, or whatever it is that people are trying to sell you, forget about money and ask yourself this simple question:
How much of YOUR HEALTH is this diet going to cost you?
I wish you all wisdom and health for the new year! Let’s all walk towards prevention and become proactive making our health our number one priority, this year and all the years to come!
Gabriela Brandao. – Certified Holistic Health Coach by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners.