Life Extension Magazine May 2006
Dr. Mark Hyman
3. Control inflammation.
Inflammation increases with weight gain, and weight gain promotes inflammation. The result is a vicious cycle of metabolic lethargy and increased insulin resistance.5 Medical evidence suggests that obesity-related insulin resistance may be due, in part, to chronic inflammation.6
According to Dr. Hyman, sugar is the greatest inflammatory substance in our diet, but trans fats are not far behind. Trans fats promote inflammation by blocking the receptors that normally switch your metabolism on and off. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in certain fish and fish oil capsules, are good fats that help these receptors function properly. Food allergens such as gluten can also promote inflammation.
The high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) blood test is the best method for measuring the body’s general level of inflammation. It does not, however, identify the cause of inflammation. The levels can be elevated in patients with metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, food allergies, and a host of other diseases. People with high hs-CRP levels typically have problems losing weight.
Blood tests can also be used to check for environmental and food allergies, gluten allergies, and celiac sprue disease. Getting to the root of the inflammation can help you determine how to adjust your diet so you shed pounds and keep them off.
4. Prevent oxidative stress.
While oxygen is essential to life, the wrong kind of oxygen can cause cellular damage. Oxygen molecules like to have a partner. Oxidative stress occurs when a pair of oxygen molecules is split in two. The lone oxygen molecule becomes a highly reactive, unstable molecule called a free radical. Free radicals damage DNA, promote wrinkles, and throw a kink into normal metabolic processes, promoting weight gain and diabetes. Antioxidants, found in colorful plant foods, teas, red wine, cocoa, and many supplements, help reduce the number of free radicals in the body and help restore a healthy metabolism.
5. Turn calories into energy.
You will not lose weight sitting around on the sofa. The best way to turbocharge your metabolism is to get moving. Physical activity has a positive impact on how fast cells turn food into energy.
6. Check your thyroid.
Your thyroid gland is the master metabolic regulator. An underactive thyroid slows down your metabolism. What you eat, what you breathe, and how you handle stress all affect thyroid function. A simple blood test can tell you if you have a sluggish thyroid.
7. Detoxify your liver.
Toxins from food and the environment can make you fat. Toxins may come in the form of medication, bacteria, industrial chemicals, and heavy metals such as mercury. These pollutants can damage or block the signals that control your appetite. You can detoxify your body with the right balance of protein, fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phyto-nutrients found in plant foods.
Supplement Your Diet
Most Americans lack one or more essential vitamins or minerals. Dr. Hyman recommends that everyone take the following supplements daily:
As shown in the chart of recommended food sources and supplements on the following page, further supplementation depends on which key best suits you.
Boosting Life Expectancy
For the first time in history, humans are facing a potential decline in life expectancy. Researchers reporting in the New England Journal of Medicine attribute the potential decline to America’s obesity epidemic.7 Studies conducted by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 112,000 Americans die each year as a direct result of obesity.8 Dr. Hyman blames the food, drug, and healthcare industries for ignoring what he calls a “treatable, preventable, and completely reversible problem.”
“The industry is not given incentives to promote health,” says Dr. Hyman. “It is profiting from poor diets, illness, and obesity.”
Ultrametabolism taps into years of medical research that has never been translated into clinical practice. Dr. Hyman’s new paradigm for automatic weight loss has put personalized medicine within everyone’s reach.
According to Dr. Hyman, this means that “people can take advantage of the medicine of the future, right now.”
For more information visit www.drhyman.com.
1. Sarlio-Lahteenkorva S, Rissanen A, Kaprio J. A descriptive study of weight loss maintenance: 6 and 15 year follow-up of initially overweight adults. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2000 Jan;24(1):116-25.
2. Kaput J. Decoding the pyramid: a systems-biological approach to nutrigenomics. Ann NY Acad Sci. 2005 Dec;1055:64-79.
3. Berger A, Brand M, O’Rahilly S. Uncoupling proteins: the unravelling of obesity? Increased understanding of mechanisms may lead, in time, to better drugs. BMJ. 1998 Dec 12;317(7173):1607-8.
4. Wortley KE, del Rincon JP, Murray JD, et al. Absence of ghrelin protects against early-onset obesity. J Clin Invest. 2005 Dec;115(12):3573-8.
5. Phinney SD. Fatty acids, inflammation, and the metabolic syndrome. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Dec;82(6):1151-2.
6. Xu H, Barnes GT, Yang Q, et al. Chronic inflammation in fat plays a crucial role in the development of obesity-related insulin resistance. J Clin Invest. 2003 Dec;112(12):1821-30.
7. Olshansky SJ, Passaro DJ, Hershow RC, et al. A potential decline in life expectancy in the United States in the 21st century. N Engl J Med. 2005 Mar 17;352(11):1138-45.
8. Flegal KM, Graubard BI, Williamson DF, Gail MH. Excess deaths associated with underweight, overweight, and obesity. JAMA. 2005 Apr 20;293(15):1861-7. Mar 17;352(11):1138-45.