The biggest mistake most of us probably are committing while trying to lose weight is by not tapping into the immense power of fat-burning hormones. The one reason why crash dieting will never work for sustained weight loss is because it throws all the important fat-burning hormones into disarray and after some initial loss of water weight, the body would just refuse to shed pounds or to burn fat. To put it out rather bluntly, hormones can make you fat and keep you fat! All hormones act as chemical messengers that relay messages back and forth from the brain to the rest of the body and they are vital in regulating all essential functions. Hormones are responsible for both weight gain and weight loss and that’s why it’s important to harness the power of fat-burning hormones to drop pounds like crazy. Needless to say, when hormones go into a tizzy, it can hamper all important functions, and the most common outcome, is weight gain. These fat-burning hormones need to be fed with optimum nutrients through food and a deficiency of certain nutrients can severely affect the hormones that are necessary for weight loss. In this post, we list out some amazing ways to switch on your fat-burning hormones.
Functions of Fat-Burning Hormones:
- They regulate metabolism.
- Balance blood sugar levels.
- Prevent storage of fat.
- Accelerate burning of stored fat.
- Controls appetite.
List of Fat-Burning Hormones:
1. Leptin: Leptin is the satiety or fullness hormone that sends signal to the brain that you are “full” and have had enough food. Leptin and ghrelin (hunger hormone) usually work in unity, maintaining an optimum balance, ghrelin rising only when there is a need to replenish energy and leptin signalling when there’s enough calories and energy in the body. However, when leptin function gets impaired, leptin fails to send signal to the brain, and the body tends to pile on calories, uncertain of when to stop eating. Leptin resistance can also slow down your metabolism and increase ghrelin levels. All these factors not only prevents weight loss, they can make you gain weight with each meal. Leptin also pushes your body to burn stored fat to produce heat. This hormone also plays an important role in the regulation of thyroid gland, growth hormone, and adrenal glands. Deducing from the above data, we can easily say that leptin impairment can lead to weight gain and storing of extra calories as fat in the body. When a person is leptin resistant, it becomes very difficult to lose weight because the body is always in a state of hunger and does not realize that it has enough energy in the system. Yo-yo dieting, cortisol, free radicals all can affect leptin resistance.
2. Adiponectin: Adiponectin is a hormone which is produced by adipose tissue or fat cells. Adiponectin is released from fat cells and increases insulin sensitivity. It pushes the insulin to communicate with body cells to take up blood sugar instead of letting them getting stored.
3. Human growth hormone: It’s a hormone that promotes growth and development, but it’s also a hormone whose deficiency makes one fat. Research has revealed that obese individuals have extremely low amounts of this hormone. A deficiency of this essential hormone can lead to increased fat deposit (especially around the abdominal area), higher chance to develop insulin resistance, high levels of triglyceride cholesterol, and low level of HDL (good) cholesterol. Human growth hormone has anti-ageing benefits also, so the double whammy is that along with getting to shed some extra pounds, you may even be able to prevent loose skin and wrinkles.
4. Glucagon: Glucagon is a hormone that regulates sugar in the blood by breaking down stored glycogen in the body. While insulin converts sugar to glycogen and stores it as fat in the body, glucagon converts stored glycogen to sugar. When the level of glycogen store gets depleted, the body reaches out to stored fat for energy.
5. Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1): Glucagon-like peptide 1 is an incretin, which helps to reduce appetite and when adequate levels of this hormone are present in the body, we are less likely to snack in between meals.
6. Cholecystokinin (CCK): Cholecystokinin is a hormone produced in the I-cells that line the duodenum. It improves digestion, controls appetite. This hormone slows down emptying of food from the stomach and stimulates bile production. In turn, bile reduces the size of fat so that enzymes can break them down easily. It also helps in better digestion of food. It also helps to feel full and reduces appetite.
7. Peptide YY (PYY): PYY is a fullness hormone secreted by the gut where it slows down digestion and promotes better absorption of nutrients from the food. It decreases appetite and helps with weight loss.
8. Testosterone: Testosterone is a hormone secreted by ovaries in females. Women with low testosterone levels have low energy and weight gain issues. It promotes lean muscle, which as we all know, helps in burning more calories.
9. Insulin-like growth Factor (IGF): This fat burning hormone, which gets stimulated by the release of human growth hormone, is secreted by the liver. It taps into stored fat and glycogen stores to create energy in the body.
10. Thyroid hormones: Impairment of thyroid hormones can majorly affect weight loss. If thyroid hormones, particularly thyroxine function is regulated, it helps in improving metabolism and weight loss.
15 Amazing Ways to Switch on your Fat Burning Hormones:
1. Eat foods rich in antioxidants to trigger leptin release: Foods such as banana, pomegranate, pumpkin, kiwi, avocado, carrots, green leafy vegetables, garlic, mango, blueberries, kidney beans, apples, turmeric, are all rich in antioxidants which trigger the release of leptin hormone that controls appetite. Here’s a list of Top 45 Foods to Suppress Appetite and Reduce Hunger.2. Pick Low Glycemic Index Foods: Introduce low-GI foods in your diet because they do not cause sharp spikes in insulin and the body has enough time to utilize them. Oatmeal, eggs, lentils, dal, cheese, peanuts, paneer, almonds, chickpeas, broccoli, lettuce, cucumber are some examples of low GI food with low calories too.
3. To Boost Adiponetcin: Increase the consumption of monounsaturated fats like nuts, avocado, olive oil, coconut oil to boost adiponectin. Increase the intake of omega-3 fatty acids through flaxseed, legumes. Vitamin D and exercise also boosts the secretion of this fat-burning hormone.
4. Protein-rich diet: A protein-rich diet boosts the release of leptin, adiponectin, and human growth hormones. Here’s a list of plant-based protein sources for vegetarians.
5. Sleep for at least 7 hours every night: When you sleep well at night, the levels of sleep hormone melatonin increases which in turn lowers hunger and stress hormones (ghrelin and cortisol respectively). Also, a good night’s sleep is necessary to optimize all fat-burning hormones mentioned above. Every body function sets into place when you have adequate sleep at night, at least 7 hours, and lesser than this time frame can disrupt bodily functions, increase the hunger and stress hormones (ghrelin and cortisol respectively), and also HGH which is released in pulses when you sleep at night. Avoid using gadgets during bedtime, listen to soothing music, or indulge in positive thinking to sleep well at night.
6. Practice yoga: Yoga not only helps to relax and calm an overactive mind, the various poses stimulate endocrine glands triggering the release of fat-burning hormones. From basic pranayam to the complex dhanurasana, each yoga pose helps to boost metabolism and aid in weight loss.
7. Completely eliminate sugar or reduce sugar intake: When insulin level spikes, it impairs the functioning of many fat-burning hormones including that of human growth hormone. Cutting down on sugar will help regulate blood sugar and increase the level of this growth hormone.
8. Say no to refined carbs: Just like sugar, refined carbs pump in a lot of empty calories into the body and lead to decline in human growth hormone and impairs the functioning of satiety hormones such as leptin.
9. Exercise and get moving: Regular exercise, for at least 40 minutes a day, five times a week, optimizes the function of all fat-burning hormones. Keep apart at least 40 minutes to one hour to activate all these essential weight loss hormones through exercise.
10. Fasting: The process of fasting detoxifies body, improves normal functioning of body, and aids in weight loss. It also is a sureshot way to increase human growth hormone without spending a single penny and that’s because when a person is fasting, HGH surges and triggers the breakdown of stored fat to be used as energy rather than muscle or protein. Through this way, you are losing weight without actually losing out on the precious lean muscle, and reaching for the stored fat directly.
11. Eat a High-Fiber Diet: Fiber is an important factor that is so essential to losing weight. A diet that lacks fiber will act as a roadblock and hamper the normal functioning of all essential fat-burning hormones. On the contrary, a diet which is rich in fiber has positive impacts on overall health, from improving digestion to mood swings. Various studies have revealed that a majority of the population does not get enough fiber in their diet (daily recommended intake is 38 gm per day for men and 25 gms per day for women). Since we, at Rati Beauty, understand the importance of fiber in weight loss, all the diet program include a good amount of fiber content. Check out Rati Beauty app to see how you can make use of these fat-burning hormones naturally to lose weight.
12. Add turmeric to your diet: Turmeric is not only an anti-inflammatory food, it also increases the production of adiponectin and also improves insulin sensitivity.
13. Zinc is an all-rounder Mineral: Zinc is probably the most under-rated mineral. It is essential for multiple functions – from boosting immunity to regulating hunger and fat-burning hormones. Whole grains, almonds, pumpkin seeds, eggs, peanuts, sesame, spinach, mushroom, and fruits are rich sources of zinc.
14. Increase Magnesium Levels: Magnesium is essential for lipolysis and for the fat-burning process to take place. Eat adequate quantities of peanuts, pumpkin seeds, almonds, spinach to get your daily dose of magnesium.
15. Omega-3 Fatty Acids are the key to Weight Loss: They help not only with weight loss, they are needed for healthy skin, hair, and even nails. When we are on a healthy diet to lose weight, we might increase the intake of omega-3 fatty acids through food sources such as fish, chia seeds, almonds, walnuts, and flaxseeds. A surge in omega-3 fatty acid consumption will boost weight loss as well as add glow to the skin as well.