So, you thought you are having a real tough time to stay slim, than your grandparents did just at your age? Yes, you are right!
Research reveals that we are at least 10% heavier than those who were of the same age in the 80’s, though we might have the same food and exercise. This might be due to our present lifestyle and various environmental factors which affect our BMI or the body mass index.
According to a research by York University’s Faculty, it is known that it is tougher to maintain the same weight, after a certain age. This was easier for anyone around 30 years ago. Even if an individual consumed the same carbs, fat or protein and did the same kind of exercise, the person was found to be heavier than anyone of that age, a few years back.
As per study author Jennifer Kuk, “Our study results suggest that if you are 40 years old now, you’d have to eat even less and exercise more than if you were a 40-year-old in 1971, to prevent gaining weight. However, it also indicates there may be other specific changes contributing to the rise in obesity beyond just diet and exercise.”
Few Factors Which Contribute to Increased BMI
We usually look at various exercise and dietary habits as we consider the BMI or our weight. However, weight management is quite complex and much more than watching what or how much is eaten.
BMI is usually affected by different factors which include:
- Use of medications
- Toxins in environment
- Timing of meals
- Level of stress
- Presence of gut bacteria
- Light exposure at night
The authors do admit that more research is needed for determining how all these factors have change the status of BMI. They have however mentioned about three primary players.
Increased Toxins in Environment: Compared to 30 years ago, it is a truth that we are exposed to greater levels of environmental toxins which include flame retardants, heavy metals, pesticides, air pollution and use of plastics for food storage. Such toxins are known to increase the burden on our endocrine system. It helps in altering the hormonal processes which can affect the weight management and metabolism.
Increasing Use of Prescription Drugs: Prescription drugs were not much use in 1970’s. Their usage has increased dramatically. There are several antidepressant drugs which are directly linked to weight gain. Unfortunately, these are one of the highest prescribed drugs for people in USA to people in the age group of 18 to 44.
Change in Gut Microbiome: Research reveal that the gut microbiome or the community of bad and good bacteria has changed a lot since 80’s.
Americans now eat quite differently these days. The products we usually eat are loaded with pesticides, toxins and antibiotics. These days people eat plenty of junk food, which was not prevalent earlier. All such factors have a negative influence on the gut bacteria population.
Microbiome Support With SCFA
In case of functional medicine, gut microbiome is said to be the foundation of health. If there is an imbalance in gut microbiome, it prevents healing from different health disorders. Thus, it makes sense to so that you can do everything which helps in supporting others.
Oral tolerance is an important factor. It is the ability of the body to recognize the different food proteins. When oral tolerance is lost, the immune system believes that several foods are pathogens. When this happens, the individual develops more sensitivity to food. It increases hormonal issues, increases weight gain, increases metabolism imbalance and builds autoimmunity.
Oral tolerances can be supported by fixing problematic or leaky gut. Liver function can be supported and histamine reactions can be tamed. It is possible to reduce stress and balance blood sugar level. However, the best ways of offering support are by providing the body with lots of short-chain fatty acids or SCFA.
SCFA are defined as powerful gut signalling compounds which are readily available in vegetables and fruits, which affect not just the gut but also brain and different parts of the body.
The gut bacteria help in making SCFA, they also need it as fuel for production of SCFA. You have them more, the more the good gut bacteria can overweight the bad.
SCFA include the following:
SCFA binds all the cell receptors which work to control appetite and hunger. It works to turn away insulin resistance. It also helps in burning body fat efficiently.
If you have low levels of SCFA, you will suffer from the following conditions:
- You will have a large appetite
- You might suffer from insulin resistance
- You will be storing body fat more than burning it
As the gut diversity is destroyed, SCFA cannot signal it well and it is known as ‘obese microbiome’.
For totally healthy SCFA, you need to have the following habits:
Have a Variety of Produce:
You need to have a variety of diverse vegetables. Your gut bacteria should be able to recognize the different kinds of food proteins. You need to have at least 7 to 9 servings of food in a day. One serving is usually of half cup of fresh vegetables or it is a cup of shredded green. You can try out high quality sugar fruits which will help in ensuring the blood sugar is stable.
You will benefit a great deal from supplementing with butrate, which is a primary SCFA. You need to start by having a capsule each day and then you can move to two capsules at least two times in a day.
Glutathione Levels Boost:
Glutathione is one of the best antioxidants which helps in reducing inflammation. Inflammation is one of the main reasons for loss in microbiome diversity. You need absorbable glutathione which includes s-acetyl glutathione. It needs to be noted here that the regular glutathione is not well absorbed.
You will find many other ways to support your healthy microbiome. Get in touch with my office and find out more about the microbiome health. You can definitely improve it, which will help in improving your healthy body weight.