Individuals believed for many years that weight loss was a simple equation with dieting and exercise as the only key component. Research and studies, however, are showing that hormones can and do play a significant role in making or breaking your weight loss efforts.
Many of those individuals take the approach of eating less and exercising more. This makes common sense, right? However, what does not make sense is eating less, exercising more, and not losing a pound or an inch. The combination of diet and exercise makes sense, but the inability to lose weight does not make any sense whatsoever.
Hormones are responsible for dictating many things in the order of our physical and emotional world. For example, hormones can contribute to what we may or may not crave, and for some that may be chocolate and for others something salty. Hormones can also play a direct role on the condition of our sexual drive and our immune system.
In other words, hormones have a lot of pull in the chain of command known as our physical body. With dozens of chemicals in our bodies dictating our mood and our cravings, it is no wonder that hormonal imbalance can wreak havoc on our weight loss efforts.
Insulin – Insulin can play a vital role in making or breaking your weight loss efforts. No matter how many calories you remove from your diet and no matter how many exercises you incorporate into your daily routine, if insulin is not stable, you may feel the need to eat more.
Serotonin – Serotonin also plays a vital role in whether or not your dieting efforts will succeed. Serotonin also affects mood, as well as appetite. Without the proper estrogen levels or a too low testosterone level, weight loss becomes difficult at best and stubborn belly fat may hang around a bit longer than desired.
Cortisol ñ Cortisol is the hormone responsible for the flight or fight syndrome. Cortisol is heightened in situations where there may be pending danger. When there is too much cortisol, appetites may increase due to the fact that extra energy is now necessary to fight or flight. This can thoroughly interfere with weight loss efforts. High levels of stress can increase cortisol, which can increase appetite for fuel and energy.
As you can see, it is important to watch calories and include exercise; however, it is equally important to be aware of your hormonal balances, as well.