Holistic Pharmacist Blog...
Nutritional Tools and Supplements for Holistic Weight Loss

In the last post we covered the important lifestyle changes that need to be made to start living a truly healthy and strong life. Once a person commits to eating whole, real food, incorporates quality sleep and exercise into their daily life and really commits to investigating what it takes to live this type of lifestyle there are some nutritional tools and natural products that can help individuals along. When a person has been relying on a lot of heavily processed and artificial foods their bodies are often malnourished and they may feel constantly hungry, regardless of how much they eat, because their body is constantly craving those missing nutrients. So once an individual starts eating real, whole foods they may find that they don’t require as much food to feel fueled and satisfied and many cravings will disappear.

One of the complaints that is often heard from people embarking on a healthy living journey is that it takes too much time to always prepare whole, healthy foods. Although it is better to try to eat real, unprocessed food this may sometimes not be completely realistic. This is where a good quality smoothie comes in very handy! Now, I’m not talking about those weight loss, full of artificial sweeteners and preservatives type of shakes out there. I’m talking about smoothies made with such nutritious foods as organic grass fed whey protein powder or egg white protein powder or a great quality vegan protein supplement. This would be the basis of your smoothie. To this the healthy additions are endless. A delicious greens powder can provide you with quality servings of veggies, vitamins and minerals, and help alkalize your body. A handful of spinach is an excellent way to get extra nutrition into your smoothies and people are always shocked to discover that you cannot taste it at all! Maca powder is another delicious addition that adds a caramel flavour to your smoothies and is an adaptogen that can help neutralize stress hormones and increase energy. You can also add frozen bananas (which make an incredibly creamy smoothie), berries, or avocado for extra nutrition! Raw cacao (not processed cocoa) gives smoothies a delicious chocolate flavour and provides you with magnesium, iron, and anti-oxidants! Cinnamon also adds great flavour and is a great blood sugar stabilizer. Adding some nut butters or coconut oil provides you with healthy, satisfying fats that keep you metabolism ramped up and gives you energy! These smoothies can be used as a delicious breakfast option or an afternoon healthy snack to keep the body fuelled and healthy!

It’s also important while starting on the healthy living journey to support your body with a multi-vitamin and a well-balanced B vitamin complex to maintain energy levels and replenish stores from a previously less than ideal lifestyle. This also helps support the body in it’s healing and detoxifying process as a person transitions to a healthier way of living. A digestive enzyme may be required for a short period of time as the digestive system may be sluggish after not being used to breaking down such quantities of real food.  Once the body adjusts to digesting whole foods many times these digestive enzymes can be discontinued.

Often times when an individual is changing their lifestyle over to a healthier one they are obviously consuming less processed and fast food. This food will often contain a lot of iodized salt. So when a person stops consuming these foods their iodine levels may drop. Iodine is needed for a healthy thyroid and being even slightly deficient can lead to lethargy and cause weight to be difficult to come off. Many times people will have thyroid tests show that they are at the borderline of normal and so they go untreated. There are supplements available that contain iodine, zinc, copper, and selenium, which are all essential for good thyroid function. Another common problem with many people’s busy and often unhealthy lifestyles is that their adrenals are stressed and produce too much cortisol. There are natural products that can help support the adrenals while transitioning to a healthier lifestyle and make this transition easier.  Chromium is another mineral many of us are deficient in and leads to blood sugar imbalances and it can be helpful to supplement with to help deal with sugar and excess carbohydrate cravings.

Working with a holistic nutritionist can help an individual figure out a good starting position when it comes to creating a food program, lifestyle changes, and to determine if any supplements should be implemented. They will thoroughly look at an individual’s current diet and lifestyle and recommend what changes can be made. A holistic nutritionist will take the time to get to know their client and will know how to implement changes that the client can work with and goals they can achieve. Some people do well making big changes and overhauling many things at once, while others need a gentler approach and like to address a few things at a time. A holistic nutritionists works with you in an evolving way, assessing where you are as you progress in your health journey and helps make changes and recommendations appropriately as they are required. This can become a very trusting and rewarding relationship where an individual receives the support they need to make the transition to a wonderfully healthy and vibrant lifestyle!

Posted by pharmacist at Oct 02, 2013 Category: Other
Tags: weight loss, nutrition, macs, adaptogen, mutlivitamins, smoothie, recipes, nut butter, healthy fats, coconut oil, greens, protein, whey, egg white, cacao