Weight Loss – Set Point –

So I was a little bit sick this week and while I was recovering, I ended up taking the course, Weight Management: Beyond Balancing Calories on coursera. I’m auditing the course so I get no certificate when I’m done, but I also don’t have to do all the assignments. I’m just mostly interested in the information, because weight loss has been really tough for me, even when I’m doing everything right. I actually gained 10 pounds in a month after trying some different diets this summer- which is a lot for my 5’2″ frame. But I have to say that every attempt I have tried has taught me something about myself and my body. and I’m not giving up. My focus is health. And I feel mostly good, so I know I am progressing.

Most of the course has been review for me, but it’s nice to see everything all put together. And there were a few tidbits I did not realize. I felt like it was all great info and I would encourage anyone to check it out- it doesn’t take that long either!

Here are the big takeaways from this course-

  • Calorie Restriction does not equal long term weight loss
  • Our body has a set point that controls how much we weigh, just like our temperature and our blood pH
  • Eating Quality Whole Foods will help reset our set point
  • Stress, Sleep, and Exercise will also affect our set point both to increase it or decrease it
  • Processed Foods – especially carbs + fat release dopamine and cause us to disregard hunger signals
  • Eating Mindfully will help us follow our hunger cues better
  • There is no one perfect Diet for every person
  • Every Diet works great for some and not at all for others
  • Even a 5 – 10 % weight loss will drastically improve health numbers
  • The best diet protocol is one that we can and will follow and do
  • Optimism and Gratitude are great ways to combat harmful stress
  • Exercise- 30 min./day 5x/week of aerobics and 2 days of strength training such as weights, body weight exercises, yoga or pilates will give us lots of health benefits including healing our set point
  • 7-9 hours of quality sleep per night is necessary for adults
  • Set ourselves up for success by using the power of habit

Here are some of the most interesting articles that were required reading for the course:

The contestants on the Biggest Loser all regained much of their weight back and one gained even more than he started with – https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/02/health/biggest-loser-weight-loss.html

How the hunger hormones work: https://theconversation.com/chemical-messengers-how-hormones-make-us-feel-hungry-and-full-35545

More on hormones and what to do about it: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-science-of-successfully-maintaining-weight-loss_b_58977693e4b02bbb1816bbc1?ncid=engmodushpmg00000003&fbclid=IwAR04vsRWugwnnHD91sAM_L2Mf3mkp4HUdDVE4LbLuey9FWA8VDG3Ot3t4x0

More on set point – https://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2012/01/overweight-people-weight-thermostat-turned-high.html

Stress Eating – https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/why-stress-causes-people-to-overeat

Exercise Balances Hormones https://www.piedmont.org/living-better/how-exercise-helps-balance-hormones

What would happen if you didn’t sleep https://www.ted.com/talks/claudia_aguirre_what_would_happen_if_you_didn_t_sleep?language=en

Numbers for losing even a little weight – https://www.obesityaction.org/community/article-library/benefits-of-5-10-percent-weight-loss/

So there you go!! I really enjoyed this course. Like I said, it has solidified a lot of what I already knew. I am working on focusing on my health- stress, sleep and exercise as well as on what I’m eating and what I feed my family.

I hope this helps and give you the motivation to keep going and keep trying even though those extra pounds can be extremely sticky!!

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