The straight skinny
Local diet, nutrition experts help you realize weight loss goals
By Sara Cardine 01/12/2012
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To lose one pound of fat per week, you must consume 500 calories less each day than your usual load. You can ramp up your physical activity to subtract calories or you can directly reduce your daily intake through diet. The combination of the two is the surest way to reach your ideal weight, but any weight loss expert worth his or her (low-sodium) salt will tell you diet and nutrition are essential to shedding pounds and reaching maximum health.
Why? Because food does a lot more than give your body the energy it needs to move around, play, laugh and do dishes. The vital nutrients in the food you eat stimulate and regulate systems in the body that can spur weight loss. Naturally occurring vitamins and organic compounds instruct your body to build and repair muscles, digest more efficiently, sleep more deeply and engage in other internal processes that improve metabolism and turn your body into a fat-burning machine.
So if you’ve made weight loss a personal goal this year, understand that what you put into your body influences what you’ll ultimately be able to take off.
Here in Pasadena, a number of nutrition, diet and fitness experts are dedicated to helping people get off the dieting roller coaster and onto a straight and narrow pathway to results. Through the use of instructors and regimens that consider your individual needs and challenges, these businesses and individuals promise results you can take to the bank, or in this case, to the pool party.
Pasadena trainer Victoria Ainis opened Ultimate Breakthrough Fitness last January to help people create new, life-changing diet and exercise habits they can use to lose weight but keep for a lifetime. When a new client comes in, she employs a boot camp style of fitness. A workout is followed by a one-on-one nutrition consultation, and a workout and nutrition plan are developed for the individual.
“It’s not about cutting things out of your diet or starving yourself; it’s about finding that balance,” Ainis explains. “I believe you should find someone who looks the way you want to look and ask them what they’re doing — 99.9 percent of the time, it’s because they eat right and exercise regularly.”
Despite our best attempts, the way the body processes and stores calories over time can change drastically due to the influence of hormones and a changing metabolism. Taking this into account, MediLean of Pasadena employs a diet regimen combined with human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a hormone found in men and women and produced in higher amounts during pregnancy. When used in combination with a calorie-restricted diet, it can have a solid effect on weight loss, according to MediLean owner and CEO Dr. Cindy Macer.
“Eating what we call a “clean diet” resets (clients’) eating habits and makes everyone much more aware of the foods we call their “trigger foods” — those foods that make them feel good or bad — as well as the foods that result in weight gain,” Macer said in an email interview.
MediLean clients, who receive hands-on medical supervision before, during and after the program, typically experience weight loss of about 12 to 24 pounds in three weeks. Quickly losing weight helps jumpstart better eating habits that will last them a lifetime.
Macer admits that while there’s not much conclusive medical literature on the effectiveness of hCG (not to be confused with human growth hormones taken by professional athletes), it does seem to help people stick to very low-calorie diets. “Ask most nutritionists and they will tell you not many people can tolerate a very low-calorie diet without appetite suppressants,” she adds. “When [our clients] use the pharmaceutical-grade hCG with our very low-calorie diet plan, they not only tolerate it well, but usually feel great.”
MediLean, 1 W. California Blvd, Ste. 121, (626) 765-9250 medileanmd.com