Surprising links between weight loss, your liver, your lymph and eating the right fat.
1. Love Your Liver
My Fat Flush Plan is dedicated first and foremost to supporting the liver in its daunting role as the body’s purifier. In reality, the liver is perfectly designed to detoxify itself automatically, without any help from you or Fat Flush, for that matter. As the body’s premier detoxifier (think of it as the filter in your personal engine) and fat-burning organ, the liver has an amazing built-in process that is in charge of breaking down everything that comes its way, from chemicals, preservatives, and heavy metals to the food and beverages you ingest.
Ah, but here’s the rub.
In order for the detox process to work smoothly, your body needs a plethora of heavy-duty nutritional elements to keep the detox pathways working optimally and to break down toxins. So, you need to be very well nourished to detox.
A liver clogged with poisons or excess fats cannot perform its fat burning and other essential duties, like maintaining blood sugar levels, storing glycogen, synthesizing and normalizing blood proteins, and helping to keep your body in hormonal balance. A poorly functioning liver results in stagnation. Freeing up your liver to do its job may be the single most important step you ever take in improving your overall health and achieving your weight loss goals permanently.
The Fat Flush program accomplishes this task in several ways. One is through the antioxidant/phenol-rich cranberry and water mixture you will be drinking during each seasonal Fat Flush to keep those detox pathways moving right along. The recipe for the signature Fat Flush cran-water is 1 oz. unsweetened cranberry juice to 7 oz of water (makes an 8 oz. glass of cran-water) to be consumed eight times throughout the day (64 oz. total).
And the benefits of cranberry keep on accruing. Cranberries were analyzed with other fruits for their antioxidant power by measuring their ORAC value (oxygen radical absorbance capacity). Cranberries register a 9,584 ORAC value compared to the second runner up (raspberries), which were only 4,882. So cranberries are powerful medicine in neutralizing harmful free radicals and preventing them from taking a foothold in the body.
Daily intake of foods in the liver-loving veggie cruciferous family (think cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts) also speeds the breakdown of fat-storing toxins and keeps new body fat from forming. Lemon and water first thing in the morning helps to thin out bile and tone up both the kidneys and liver. Eggs (preferably from chickens that don’t do drugs) are part of the regimen because their high sulfur content and lecithin helps the liver’s detox pathways and aids in the forming of bile salts.
When you clean up your act, the liver and its beautiful bile are nourished with the right foods and supplements, which will ensure efficient fat metabolism as well as efficient elimination of toxins and wastes.
2. Get Your Lymph Flowing
If the liver is your body’s filter, then the lymph channels are your body’s drainage system. Your lymph system is the foundation of your immune system and includes your spleen, tonsils, and thymus. If you have never heard of the lymphatic system, you are not alone. So many people, even those into detox, have no idea about the crucial role this system plays in health and in weight loss.
The lymphatic system is a complex network of needle-thin tubes filled with fluid that continually bathes our cells and then carries away the body’s “garbage”—toxins, waste products of metabolism, fat globules, and excess liquid—to filters called lymph nodes, where these substances are stored and then neutralized. But while blood has a pump (your heart) to keep it moving, the lymph must be pumped by the movement of muscles or through deep breathing. (You can begin to see how a sedentary lifestyle can affect your health.)
The lymph, like the liver, can be overloaded with chemicals, pesticides, and a variety of pollutants that can shut down lymphatic flow. Plus, the everyday stress we are under also is a lymph stressor. The muscles and motion of breathing are a primary way to move lymph and when we’re under stress, our breathing becomes shallower.
So what does this mean for your waistline? First off, if your lymph isn’t flowing, your tissues aren’t draining excess fluid. This creates a backlog that results in bloating. Waterlogged tissues can cause your body to swell up to two sizes—weighing-in with an extra ten to fifteen pounds—yikes! A lazy lymphatic system may also be connected to cellulite because backed up fluid “sticks” to fat cells. Last but not least, waterlogged tissues interfere with nutrient and oxygen absorption and utilization, so cell starvation starts to take place.
Cleanse your lymph with a special fitness program that focuses on rebounding —the best exercise for the lymphatics due to the gentle bouncing action. I recommend the ReboundAIR rebounder (let them know I sent you). The exercise component is fortified with Fat Flush Super Star Foods that saturate the system with detoxifying enzymes, antioxidants, and phytonutrients. The cran-water drink in the program, for example, is packed with flavonoids, enzymes, and organic acids that appear to act like natural digestive enzymes. From my observations, cranberry helps to digest lumpy deposits of lymphatic waste, which could be one of the key reasons Fat Flushers report that their cellulite disappears.
People who detox their livers and get their lymph flowing also notice they have clear, smooth, glowing skin and toned bodies. Sugar cravings vanish. More nutrients get to the cells and more calories become energy when lymph flows freely. Swelling and bloating are a thing of the past; radiant good health takes their place. So, healing the lymphatics is a big deal, not only for Fat Flushing but also for disease control. For those of you with Crohn’s disease, please take note. In the January 2008 issue of the journal Gut, it was found that Crohn’s is caused by inflammation and thickening of the lymphatics connected to the intestines—not an autoimmune disease or a genetic condition, as previously thought.
3. Eat the Right Fats
A flurry of new studies about fighting fat with fat first came out in The New England Journal of Medicine in early 2009. The media heralded these studies as the newest obesity theory, claiming that good fat, also known as brown fat because of its color, is a potent regulator of metabolism and weight. The research said that brown fat is deficient in overweight people and is primarily activated by cold.
This good fat, which triggers the body to burn more calories and generate more body heat, is key in keeping infants warm. By adulthood, brown fat is metabolically inactive in many individuals. However—what the researchers completely overlooked is the role of the essential fatty acid, gamma linolenic acid, more commonly known as GLA. Since the 1980s, it has been known that GLA stimulates brown fat activity through its prostaglandin pathways.
This is exactly why GLA has played a crucial role in Fat Flush since the origins of the program. It is found in its most balanced form in black currant seed oil, although borage and evening primrose oil are other rich sources. GLA is also included in the starter Fat Flush Kit as the GLA-90 supplement. It’s a must for beautiful, glowing skin and appears to keep the skin taunt during weight loss.
Stay tuned for my next blog in this three-part series – The 10 Fat Flush Commandments: Part 2!