About Toxins & Obesity
Research data implies that the obesity epidemic in the U.S. is due to toxic overload. An article in the April 2002 issue of The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine concluded that: “The commonly held causes of obesity, overeating and inactivity do not explain the current obesity epidemic. Because the obesity epidemic occurred rather quickly, it has been suggested that environmental causes instead of genetic factors may be largely responsible”. In other words, they are saying that environmental toxins created in large amounts over the last 50 to 100 years could explain the widespread obesity epidemic.
If you have a difficult time losing weight, it may be a result of the toxins that are constantly being introduced into your bloodstream. The more fat your body has, the more toxins it will retain, as you lose weight those fat cells will release toxins into the bloodstream. Once the toxins are in the bloodstream, they can cause harm to the body.Detoxification is the process of binding up these toxins and releasing them from the body. Although study of detoxification and its impact on obesity is relatively new, researchers do understand some of the mechanisms involved with how toxins impact weight gain. In particular, toxins can impact your ability to lose weight in three significant ways:
- Toxins slow your metabolism
- Toxins decrease your ability to burn fat
- Toxins slow down the satiety response time (the time it takes you to feel full)
1. Toxins Slow Your Metabolism
In the past, it was thought that your resting metabolic rate (RMR) declined with weight loss primarily because in calorie intake or changes in the ratio of muscle to fat. But clinical studies are now showing just how toxic internal toxins can be to our weight loss efforts. Toxins alter the hormonal regulation of weight, hormones that increase our appetite, alter thyroid hormone activity and receptor function leading to lowered metabolic rate.
2. Toxins Decrease Your Ability to Burn Fat
Your body stores toxins in fat cells in an attempt to protect your vital organs from the circulating toxins. As one is exposed to more toxins, more fat cells are needed as storage place. As a result we develop “Toxic Obesity”. When we start losing weight, the toxins are released in the bloodstream causing uncomfortable symptoms like headaches, rashes, congestion, diarrhea, allergies, mood swings, insomnia, etc.
One of the first things toxins do when released into the bloodstream is slow down your RMR. So, as you begin to lose weight, those surfacing toxins begin to inhibit your ability to lose further weight. However, if you can eliminate those toxins from the body quickly enough during or before a period of weight loss, you may be able to reduce the decline in your metabolism. A lot of cases of obesity are due to toxicity. In order to prevent discomfort, our body wisely starts craving for foods that promote the building of fat again, sabotaging our previous efforts to lose weight. The last thing you want to hear is that something in your blood is preventing your body from burning fat but that is just what toxins do.
In 1971 for example, a study at the University of Nevada, Division of Biochemistry determined that chemical toxins weakened the co- enzyme necessary to burn fat in the body by 20 percent. In 2002, researchers concluded that toxins released during weight loss had the capacity to damage the fat-burning mitochondria1. The damage was significant enough to negatively impact the body’s ability to burn calories and in effect, fat. Toxins slow our metabolism and damage the mitochondria that provide us with energy. No wonder we feel tired and get fat!
1. Imbeault P. et al., Weight loss induced in plasma pollutant is associated with reduced skeletal muscle oxidative capacity, AM J Physical Endocrinal Metab. March 2002; p. 282(3): E574-9
3. Toxins Slow Down Satiety Response Time
Additionally, toxicity interferes with satiety signals. Toxins can influence weight through increases in inflammation. Signals triggered by inflammation-induced leptin resistance. Leptin is the major appetite suppressing hormone. It takes longer for the brain to get the message that we are full and need to stop eating.
If all that weren’t enough, in an effort to prevent harmful effects on the cells, our body dilutes the toxic body fluids. The result is fluid weight gain. Other mechanisms are the effects of toxins on the liver’s control of fat and glucose metabolism. This is how toxins can be responsible for a vicious weight cycle.
Can Toxins make us fat? The answer is an emphatic YES!