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GT Get Fit Tip: Release Cortisol – Increase Body Fat

While cortisol is an important and helpful part of the body’s response to stress, it’s important that the body’s relaxation response to be activated so the body’s functions can return to normal following a stressful event. Unfortunately, in our current high-stress culture, the body’s stress response is activated so often that the body doesn’t always have a chance to return to normal, resulting in a state of chronic stress.

Higher and more prolonged levels of cortisol in the bloodstream (like those associated with chronic stress) have been shown to have negative effects, such as:


  • Impaired cognitive performance
  • Suppressed thyroid function
  • Blood sugar imbalances such as hyperglycemia
  • Decreased bone density
  • Decrease in muscle tissue
  • Higher blood pressure
  • Lowered immunity and inflammatory responses in the body, slowed wound healing, and other health consequences
  • Increased abdominal fat, which is associated with a greater amount of health problems than fat deposited in other areas of the body. Some of the health problems associated with increased stomach fat are heart attacksstrokes, the development of metabolic syndrome, higher levels of “bad” cholesterol (LDL) and lower levels of “good” cholesterol (HDL), which can lead to other health problems!

To keep cortisol levels healthy and under control, the body’s relaxation response should be activated after the fight or flight response occurs. You can learn to relax your body with various stress management techniques, and you can make lifestyle changes in order to keep your body from reacting to stress in the first place.



Suffer from Obesity?

On overweight man's waistline.

Image via Wikipedia

If you have a loved one that suffers from Obesity, reach out and encourage them to make change.

Being just 10lbs overweight can have detrimental effects on the body.

It’s better to give them some tough love now, bc it’s even tougher to love them when they are gone

Obesity KILLS!!

The best “multi-vitamin” for healthy people?

Report of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010

For the general, healthy population, there is no evidence to support a recommendation for the use of multivitamin/mineral supplements in the primary prevention of chronic disease.

Limited evidence suggests that supplements containing combinations of certain nutrients are beneficial in reversing chronic disease when used by special populations; in contrast, certain nutrient supplements appear to be harmful in other subgroups.

People take vitamins all the time and I am frequently asked which is best.

My answer is NONE.

A body that is deficient or malnourished needs to be supplemented with essential nutrients that can be obtained from a variety of foods that can be grown or found locally.  If you eat well rounded and colorful then you should not need to supplement your diet, unless you have a true deficiency.

There is a difference.

Have you ever seen a person that is malnourished?

This dude here isn’t one of them

Too Sweet for Sweetness? Natural vs Artificial Sugar


Image via Wikipedia

All sugar is the same, white sugar, brown sugar, molasses, it all comes from either sugar cane or sugar beets.  We manufacture corn for sugar and make artificial sweeteners (Phenylalanine and Aspartame)  for products to add taste and freshness.

Common products with added sugar: (1 gram = 1 teaspoon)

  • Chinese Fortune cookies one cookie 3.5 grams
  • Baked beans one-cup serving 15 grams
  • Ketchup single pack  4 grams
  • Flavored Yogurt single serving size 24 grams
  • BBQ sauce one-cup serving  9 grams
  • “Reduced” salad dressings one-cup reduced-calorie French dressing 58 grams
  • Lemonade single serving of the drink has almost 17 grams
  • Caramel Flavored popcorn 18 grams per ounce serving.
  • Granola bars 11 grams

Natural Sugar

There’s a natural sugar in fruit and plants called “fructose” which has gotten a bad name over the years.  The body metabolizes sugar into glucose so the brain can use it for energy and if a body already has ample energy readily available then anything extra will be turned to triglycerides and fats by the liver.  Fructose is easily converted to fat if not needed, which causes a problem for people who do not move alot or burn enough calories.  Overweight to morbidly obese persons have free-flowing sugar in their bodies waiting to be used and the build up of high blood sugar will contribute to bone, joint and heart diseases.   When I worked at the hospital my favorite patients to train were Type II Diabetics because 15mins of exercise helped control blood sugar and alleviate joint pain while burning calories to reduce fat stores and get them off medications.  I had a blast!!

Man-made Sugar

We manufacture sugar from plants and also use chemicals to make aspartame and phenylalanine (Equal, Nutrasweet and Splenda) which can increase desire for sweets, kill taste buds and decrease insulin absorption by the body and contribute to adult-onset diabetes.

Aspartame causes additional problems because of its chemical breakdown. A molecule of aspartame consists of two amino acids (phenylalanine and aspartic acid) linked by a molecule of methanol, the alcohol found in antifreeze. At 30C (86F), lower than body temperature, the three components come apart and each has distinctive effects. The methanol is metabolized in your body to formaldehyde and then to formic acid. Both of these are very potent metabolic poisons.

Phenylalanine and aspartic acid both mimic brain neurotransmitters. They can disrupt the balance of these chemicals, causing depression, seizures, memory problems and problems with concentration and learning. They may also be a factor in the development of neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and ALS (Lou Gherig’s disease), as well as multiple sclerosis. (

I personally drink diet sodas with phenylalanine and I can’t pass them up when they are on sale, call it an addiction or craving, it doesn’t matter.   I would rather choose natural fructose over any manufactured sugars because factories mean profit and profits for big companies are not always health conscious.

The choice is yours.

Pick your poison.

Homeostasis – listen to your body talk

Testing the blood glucose level yourself

Image via Wikipedia

Same, similar. Thats homeostasis. Thats what your body wants and does.

98.6 body temp

120/80 blood pressure

Blood Glucose (sugar)

2  REM cycles

Body weight

All the above are just numbers or guidelines that have shown to be optimal for our Human body.  There are others as well but I want to focus on these.

98.6 Body Temp helps to fight infection, just as important its optimal prime for organ function.  The more variation of hot & cold temperatures we impose can directly effect our organ function and be detrimental to life.  The better conditioned or healthier bodies can withstand more fluctuation in body temperature.

120/80 has said to be optimal BP since they started practicing medicine long ago.  When I worked in the hospital I felt the  140/90 suggestion was a business decision to capture more low dose practices.  Good news is a minimal 20 minutes of brisk walking or stair climbing most days of the week is the recommendation for heart health, thats it.  Now go tell granny.

Blood sugar has to be in balance.  When sugar levels are high for 5-8 yrs (kids & adults) it can damage the small blood vessels in our organs and tissues.  So that pretty much means every place in your body I can think of.  Something will break down eventually.  What we eat and how much we exercise will determine what blood glucose level we maintain. What did you do today?

2 REM cycles or 8 hours of sleep.  Rapid Eye Movement is a must for a good nights sleep and the brain enjoys 2 cycles each cycle lasting around 4hrs.  Dreaming is very important to the human psyche.  The brain by the way, is the most complex study on this Earth.  We can poke and prod but the more scientists learn how it works and connects, the more questions they ask each other.

Body Weight.  For every height, there is an optimal weight that correlates to health.  A human skeletal frame can only support so much mass.  MASS is fat as well as muscle when we talk about total weight.  People say what about athletes? Look at the ones that die during competition, if you look at their height most are more muscular than the average person.  My mission when I train people is to attack the fat!!  You are born with fat cells, how full they are and what you weigh can be manipulated.

You and your body’s ability to keep these 5 health variables in homeostasis is important to your mental, physical, social, and spiritual well-being.  Which leads to my definition of health, the mental, physical, social and spiritual balance of well-being as we know it.  If your balance tips, so does your life.  Ask your personal physician, trainer, or healthcare provider their definition of health.  Their response just might surprise you.

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