Monday, January 24, 2011

Seeking the Silver Bullet for weight loss...

Have you stopped and thought about the speed of life in America today?  We have a seemingly endless need for speed.  Long gone are the days of trying to find a phone booth to make a call, now its inconvenient when our cell phone only has one bar.  3G wasn't fast enough so now we are going to 4 G and can anyone remember dial up connections for Internet?  We become inpatient if we have to wait a few minutes for the venti latte even if we were the ones who orders the 'triple venti, half caff, extra foam with a shot of vanilla'.  Americans have become so used to instant gratification that we become frustrated when something takes even a short amount of time to accomplish.  We immediately assume that this cannot be the case and that somehow, somewhere there has to be a faster, better way.  (Believe me, I am guilty of this as well and have made a career out of looking for a 'better way' to do things.)   To quote the girl in Willy Wonka "I want it and I want it NOW!"  So, what happens when the laws of nature are the very thing that keeps us from our need for instant results? 

We hear daily that Americans continue to gain weight and the numbers of clinically obese people is constantly increasing.  In Bakersfield it is estimated that over 60% of our population is overweight or obese.  Before you start laughing, you might want to check the national statistics or your local statistics (it isn't just Bakersfield).  Thus there is a growing (literally and figuratively) population seeking an answer to weight loss. Where there is demand, products and services are soon to show up (that's what makes America Great).  This is where the problem comes in.  We take years putting on the extra pounds and then one day we decide that we need to do something about our weight.  Now that we have focused our attention on the issue we expect immediate results.  Enter the actual laws of nature (if you don't want to know the truth don't read this next part).  A pound of fat is 3500 kcal, not so scary right?  Until you start doing the math.  For every pound of fat you want to lose you have to burn 3500 kcal more than you take in.  Hang on it gets better because the human body doesn't like to be in a negative calorie count (you burn more than you take in) your body isn't going to just give in.  Without getting into the battle of creation/evolution suffice it to say that our bodies are set up to store additional calories (as fat) for future use.  Just in case we can't find any extra food for a while.  The problem is that a shortage of food isn't the issue for most of us, so we just keep storing and storing and storing, until a majority of the population is overweight (oh, wait, we are already there)!!  Since we don't want to acknowledge this simple rule of human nature and we want quick results we go searching for the 'silver bullet'  the 'cheat code' that will over ride human physiology.  With 24 hour television and the Internet we don't have to look far for the latest "lose weight fast" program, pill, drink, formula.  Go from "fat to fit in just a few days", oh and it is really easy "just a few minutes a day is all you need to get in fantastic shape and be skinny" and we gobble it up like the food that got us here in the first place.  There is no silver bullet and there are laws of human physiology that are in play.  I intend to share these with you over the next several blogs.  The good news is that there are ways to maximize burning fat that are based in science and we will be going into those as well.

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