Since I was 15 years old I've fought my weight. I've had thin times and not so thin.
Over the years I've tried every imaginable diet, food plan and program. I've done juice and water fasting. I also committed to mono-diets such as those that were fruit or seed only. Of course there were a myriad of other crazy food plans.
While I did lose weight on a large number of different nutritional plans, I also experienced a variety of hair loss challenges and skin problems. These issues occurred either during or after the loss.
I've also been a vegetarian and a strict vegan. I've also been on a macrobiotic food plan while working hard to incorporate organic foods into my diet.
I was so committed I even took macrobiotic cooking classes for a solid year. The cooking classes were followed by a string of personal trainers while practicing all types of aerobics and yoga.
Although my inner child rebelled at every step, I psyched myself up to run on a treadmill off and on for a couple of years.
In my 20s and 30s I battled an eating disorder which cycled through anorexia and exercise bulimia (all the treadmill work) to the binging side of that scale. No pun intended.
After doing extensive therapy and working hard on the emotional issues I eventually found complete serenity with food. This has continued unbroken to current times.
When I was in my 40s I continued to maintain mental and emotional serenity with food, but things got a little shaky on the purely physical plane. I started to struggle with yo-yo weight cycles and resorted to medical doctors for help understanding what was happening to my body, since my eating was very healthy and psychologically clean.
The result of extensive testing? My thyroid was not performing appropriately, I was diagnosed with chronic candida (since my teens) and my hormones were making my body rebel in a variety of ways. As a result of my thyroid my hair and skin were acting up, but not in a good way.
During one of my consultations with my doctor he reminded me of my family heritage which included short and stocky German and Irish potato farmers. My long term nutritional consultant seconded that observation. Lucky me.
Over the past four years I've been following the Oprah plan of trying to figure out what really works just for me and my body. My ultimate goal is to just feel healthy.
The definition of feeling healthy to me means having a consistent energy source, sleeping well and not catching every cold, flu and virus that moves into town. With those simple goals in mind I can honestly say I'm making great progress.
Learning About Good Foods That Make Me Feel Good
In my quest to feel good, I've been learning about foods which make me feel bad. Sometimes I don't want to stop eating the bad foods because I like them so much.
A good example is bread. It's one of my favorite bad foods, but it makes my candida go berserk. As a result I've switched to the Ezckiel all natural (wheat less) versions. I've gotten used to the change and feel better when I eat the healthier version even though sometimes I miss the old bread.
I'm also eating foods like curry, which I never used to even consider. I never ate curry because a former employee once told me it smelled like "old socks". That mental image ruined my interest in curry for life.
Recently I had a curry attitude adjustment. Researching healthy foods I discovered that a study at Tufts University in Boston found that one of the main ingredients in curry - tumeric - has an active ingredient which encourages consistent weight loss.
How? Tumeric inhibits the growth of blood vessels which are needed to nourish new fat tissue. If new fat tissues isn't nourished it doesn't thrive. Which is a good thing.
Curcumin Is The Magic Fat Burning Ingredient
Curcumin, which is a magic ingredient in turmeric, is a plant based chemical that is easily absorbed by the human body. Curcumin suppresses the expansion of fat tissue which can not happen if blood vessels don't expand to support the fat.
At the end of 12 weeks of being feed the high fat diet, the rats who had curcumin added weighed less then the rats that didn't get the curcumin.
The researchers found that the lighter mice who had the curcumin grew fewer blood vessels and also had lower cholesterol.
Does this mean you have to eat curry to realize the benefits? Not necessarily, but any foods made with turmeric or curcumin should offer the same results as the mice on the high fat diet.
Of course if you wish to really amp up your fat burning, if you eat curry, be sure not to supplement with other weight gaining foods such as those with high sugar.
Typical Curry Sauce
For those who've never tried curry, a typical curry sauce generally consists of onion, garlic, ginger and chiles that have been chopped and fried with a variety of spices mixed in and then some mushed tomatoes added into the sauce.
Curry is not limited to just Indian cuisine. It can be found in a wide range of ethnic foods and recipes including Thai, which is very popular around the world.
Depending on the ethnic origins, curry can be made with lots of chile, more or less turmeric, lemon juice, vinegar and other spices and ingredients. Most Indian curry dishes include a variation of those ingredients.
The most important ingredient for fighting weight gain, encouraging weight loss and lowering cholesterol is turmeric. If you decide to try curry for it's weight blocking advantages, select a recipe with the highest concentration of turmeric.
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