In the battle to lose fat, just as on a real battlefield, the side with the best information, the most accurate and realistic picture of the battlefield, is best poised to win. But we here in North America are living in an illusion, because our old ideas about battling fat have given us a false sense of security.
"I am trying to lose weight. I'm having a hard time coping with this change of life. I have always been 128 lbs and now, at 55, I'm 205 lbs. I would like to know what you can offer in the way of advice. I'm going nuts."
The old logic says that if we simply exercise and eat less we will lose fat. In the new reality of North American society, this concept is no longer valid, and if relied on to structure our fat-loss efforts, in the long term can produce debilitating, or even lethal results.
Bailing water out of a leaky boat is a good way to begin, but if the boat is taking on water at a faster rate than it is losing it, then a change in strategy is urgently needed. And this is the case with current attitudes towards fat loss.
What then is new, and how have the rules changed?
Well, to start with, we in the year 2006 are exposed to far more environmental stresses than our bodies have ever had to deal with in the past. Our bodies have reacted to these stresses by storing fat more proficiently than ever before (16).
When it comes to fat regulation, the body's "better-safe-than-sorry" strategy makes it preserve fat when put under stress, as a way of dealing with the uncertainty of its environment (11). So we have become ultra-efficient fat-storing machines, getting fatter even as we reduce our dietary fat intake, and in the process, opening us up to a much greater risk for
such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
The old logic of simply exercising and eating less, then we will lose fat, is no longer valid.
One Proposed Solution
In the fight to generate proficient fat-loss and reduce hypokinetic disease risk, what is needed is a solid, well-organized assault plan. But without professional guidance, this is, for the most part, a losing battle. There are just too many confusing variables to address and accurately plan against: high-sugar intake, intestinal issues, rampant stress-hormones, misdiagnosed thyroid issues etc. (11). Each person needs a personalized body-fat and cardiovascular risk reduction plan, and fitness professionals need to understand and aggressively promote this potentially life-saving concept (1, 2).
Recognizing the Problem
Have you ever moaned to yourself "if only I had known then what I know now?" Well then listen up, and consider this article as both then and now! Here are some of the symptoms that you, the professional, can look for to help your participants and clients spot important indicators of physiological distress earlier rather than later:
These are not normal healthy physiological states! (16). Dr. Brian Martin, ND, warns: "If your clients or participants are experiencing one or more of these conditions for more than 7 days, you need to take it very seriously."
- Chronic stress (at work, new-born at home, relationship problems)
- Chronic fatigue (mornings, during the day)
- Chronic muscle and joint pain
- Chronic infections or allergies
- Low sex drive
- Excessive cravings
- Poor skin health
"Time Is Not On My Side
Time management is a daily struggle for most people with dreams, goals, careers, families and the drive to enhance their quality of living. Health-care professionals and organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) in New York have realized that the North American population is no longer able, on its own, to figure out, implement, and then sustain a health maintenance plan that works long-term. Over the last thirty years, North Americans have undergone dramatic changes in their living environment, brought on by the advent of computer technology.
Since the arrival of computers, video games, TV clickers and other "anti-aerobic" devices in the 1970s, North Americans have been getting steadily fatter, and thus more prone to hypokinetic (low-activity) disease. And they have been doing so earlier in life than at any other time in history!
Many experts now acknowledge the recent "alarm-sounding" 2006 reports of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the U.S. Surgeon-General (1996; revised 2003), which highlight the importance of reducing disease risk by focusing efforts on "gradual behavior modification" and by creating innovative ways of motivating the masses to take action. Dr. Brian Martin, ND, clinical director of EnerChanges Medical, Health, Wellness and Fitness Clinic (Vancouver, Canada) agrees that long-term success is achieved gradually, in small, palatable doses (11).
This "less is always best" approach, at least initially, appears to have the greatest success in provoking and then nurturing people's intrinsic drive to change unhealthy behavior and lifestyle habits. The secret to success is to help sedentary, busy people "get their foot in the door" to behavior and lifestyle change by getting them results fast, and without Herculean effort. Unfortunately, unscrupulous manufacturers prey on the human instinct to "get the most for the least" by offering pills, creams and gadgets that promise quick results, but have no safe, long-term or effective results.
Vibration Technology Exercise - The 21st Century Solution
The Whole Body Vibration (WBV) system by Proellixe (pronounced pro ee LEEX) is a non-invasive technology (you simply stand on it) founded on the principle of stimulating the human body's natural reflexive ability to contract muscle quickly in order to protect itself in the case of a fall or attack.
Professor Carmelo BOSCO of the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery of the Università degli Studi di Roma (Tor Vergata) was the first to introduce the concept of "whole body vibration" back in the 1970s for the enhancement of sport performance. This technique has been successfully used for the past 30 years in Europe (particularly in Eastern Bloc countries) for enhancing athletic performance and in post-injury rehabilitation. More recently, the safety of this technology, and the dramatic results that it yields, have been extensively investigated and validated by several other researchers, including:
Dr. Vincenzo RUSSO, lecturer in sports medicine at the Isitituto Superiore di Educazione Fisica (Naples) and president of the Sports Medicine Association (FMSI / Italian National Olympic Committee) in Naples
Dr. Bruno GENTILE of the Faculty of Medicine & Surgery, Seconda Università degli Studi (Naples)
Dr. Giuseppe Sito and Dr. Patrizia Piersini of the Seconda Università degli Studi (Naples), the Koelliker Hospital (Turin), and the Scuola Superiore Postuniversitaria di Medicina ad Indirizzo Estetico - Milan (SMIEM).
Many other researchers and health-care professionals are also taking advantage of this powerful new technology, which has now been transferred to the world of health, wellness and fat-loss. Impressively, the results speak truth and validation. WBV (by Proellixe) is sweeping across North America and is being absorbed into the medical, health, wellness, and fitness communities at a pace similar to that of the "step class" of the early 1990s.
Its biggest claim to fame is how it maximizes users' feelings of well-being instantly, which in turn, creates an almost addictive willingness to repeat the treatment session. In turn, and to the delight of many health care professionals, this "healthy addictive behavior" is making huge inroads in the war against hypokinetic (low-activity) diseases such as obesity, coronary artery disease and diabetes.