Why Weight Training Helps You Lose Weight and Keep It Off

If you want to slim down, why would you do weight training?  Weight training may seem like something to avoid if you don’t want to get too bulky.  But it’s a great way to build lean muscle and is an important part of a lighter, healthy lifestyle for both men and women.

Why Does Weight Training Help You Lose Weight?

The more muscle you have, the better your body burns calories. That’s because muscle tissue burns calories at a faster rate than the same amount of fat tissue.  Plus, the energy muscles use during and after strength exercise increases your metabolism.   For every pound of muscle you add, your metabolism increases to burn about 50 calories more per day.

Weight training, also known as strength training, tones and firms your muscles, and increases the amount of muscle tissue in your body. Weight training also preserves your muscle mass, which means that you’ll have an easier time keeping extra pounds off.

Is Strength Training the Only Kind of Exercise for Weight Loss?

Strength training for weight loss complements your cardiovascular exercise plan.  Cardio exercise burns calories, and improves circulation and overall health. Weight training builds muscles. Strength training is excellent for overall health, too. It increases bone density, which reduces the risk of osteoporosis, and boosts your energy.

Equipment Is Optional

Weight training doesn’t require purchasing equipment. Body weight training uses your own weight as the resistance. These exercises include pushups, pull-ups, and crunches.  Yoga and dance exercises also do an excellent job to increase your strength with moves that gently lift or pose the body.

Equipment used for weight training can be simple. Basic equipment includes using small free weights, or elastic bands that provide resistance.

Why check with a doctor before starting an exercise program?

It is important to consult a doctor before starting an exercise program. Your doctor will be more familiar with your current condition and can address concerns that are unique to you.  When you exercise with weight loss as your goal, your doctor can help you put together a program that’s right for you – one that you may even enjoy.

Get Specialized Help With Weight Loss at the Optimal Wellness Center

Dr. Keller makes a commitment with you to help you succeed in becoming lighter and healthier.  Find out more about the support available to you in Dr. Keller’s weight Loss Program.

Dr. Betty Keller is a board certified doctor specializing in weight losschronic pain treatmentmedical acupuncture and disease prevention, serving Franklin Lakes, Wyckoff, NJ, and nearby areas. She practices integrative medicine at the Optimal Wellness Center in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey.

The Relationship Between Stress and Weight Loss

If you want to lose weight, should you care about stress? You may think that dealing with weight loss is stressful enough.  But it turns out that there is a strong connection between stress and weight loss. Taking care of stress can provide a big boost to your efforts to lose weight.

There are two main ways that stress adds to the difficulty losing weight.  These are : 1) food cravings, and 2) changes in the body’s metabolism.

Stress and Food Cravings

Cortisol is the body’s stress hormone. Our ancestors needed it in “fight or flight” situations since it provides a quick burst of energy, a higher tolerance to pain, and other things to help get us out of danger.

Stress is also linked to food cravings.     With higher levels of cortisol, often people will feel cravings for salty, sweet, or high-carbohydrate foods. This may have served our ancestors who needed to eat more to prepare for danger ahead.  But today, these same cravings cause weight gain, especially with more sedentary lifestyles.

Stress and Metabolism

Cortisol helps the body deal with physical stress by tapping into energy stored as fat.  In response to stress, it moves fat from around the body to the abdominal area.  Study after study confirms that long periods of stress are linked to increased abdominal fat, even in those who are otherwise thin.

Deal With Stress, Not Stress Hormones, for Weight Loss

Cortisol by itself isn’t bad. It’s an important part of a normal metabolism. It’s long-term stress and long-term elevated levels of stress hormones that make weight loss more difficult than it has to be.

Consider how much stress you have been facing over time.  If ‘being under pressure’ drives you to get less sleep or follow eating habits you know aren’t good for you, then stress may be the problem to focus on first.  You may find that by learning enjoyable ways to exercise, get enough sleep, and manage stress, extra pounds may come off more easily than you thought.

Personalized Weight Loss Treatments at the Optimal Wellness Center

Dr. Keller makes a commitment with you to help you succeed in becoming lighter and healthier.

Her weight loss program includes personal consultation to plan meals with foods you like, and feel and look better with appropriate activity and rest.

Find out more about the support available to you in Dr. Keller’s weight Loss Program.

Call us at 201-485-7930 to get started.

About Dr. Betty Keller

Dr. Betty Keller practices integrative medicine at the Optimal Wellness Center in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey.  She is a board certified doctor  specializing in weight loss, chronic pain treatment, medical acupuncture and disease prevention, serving Franklin Lakes, Wyckoff, NJ, and nearby areas.

Sleep and Weight Loss: Why Does Sleep Help in Losing Weight?

Lack of sleep may not seem like a big deal, but it’s a real problem if you’re trying to lose weight.  You may be surprised the relationship between sleep and weight loss. Not only does it make you crabby and sap your energy, it can also take your mind and body off track from your weight loss goals.

Lack of Sleep Disrupts Healthy Eating Patterns

Studies show that people who get less sleep start to eat smaller breakfasts and more late night meals. Because their sleep cycle is messed up, their bodies think it’s time to sleep when they should be eating and vice versa.

When you stay up later, you’re more likely to snack more and choose unhealthy foods. When you don’t get enough sleep, you don’t have all the energy you need and that makes sugary and fatty foods look much more appealing. You’re responding to what your body needs, more energy, but this can set you back if you’re trying to lose weight.

Lack of Sleep Disturbs a Healthy Weight Loss Metabolism

And there’s more going on below the surface. There are two hormones that are affected when you don’t get enough sleep:  ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin tells you when it’s time to eat and leptin tells you when it’s time to stop. When you don’t get a good night’s sleep, your body makes more ghrelin and less leptin and slows down your metabolism. In short, your body is telling you to eat more and is taking longer to tell you to stop.

How to Help Yourself Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Here are 3 easy tips to help you get better sleep.

1.     Give yourself a bedtime. If you go to sleep and wake up about the same time every day, your body will get used to it and maintain a healthy sleep cycle.

2.     Watch what you eat at dinner. Don’t go to bed stuffed, the discomfort can keep you awake. Nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol can also interrupt your sleep, so avoid anything that contains those things just before bedtime.

3.     Get relaxed. Take a warm bath, read a book or magazine, or listen to soft music. Do something that will help you wind down. Avoid watching TV, going on the computer, or any other electronics. Studies have suggested that these kinds of things interfere with rest.

Lack of sleep is a common problem.  But it doesn’t have to derail your hard work to lose weight if you know why sleep is important, and you start each day well rested and refreshed.

Get Personalized Weight Loss Treatment at the Optimal Wellness Center

Dr. Keller’s weight loss program includes personal consultation to plan meals with foods you like, and feel and look better with appropriate activity and rest. Find out more about the support available to you in Dr. Keller’s weight Loss Program.

You can call us at 201-485-7930 to get started.

About Dr. Betty Keller:

Dr. Betty Keller practices integrative medicine at the Optimal Wellness Center in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey.  She is a board certified doctor specializing in weight loss, chronic pain treatment, medical acupuncture and disease prevention, serving Franklin Lakes, Wyckoff, NJ, and nearby areas.