Monthly Archives: September 2016

New Weight Loss Hopeful: Acceptance-Based Behavioral Treatment (ABT)

weight loss

The weight loss industry is a big one. Scientists are always diligently working to find the best diets and the most effective workouts that together, will set you up for weight loss success. While diet and exercise are extremely important when it comes to weight loss, a new study out of the journal “Obesity” suggests that maybe focus is in the wrong place.

This study takes a look at a therapy called Acceptance-Based Behavioral Treatment, which involves teaching people how to accept discomfort and displeasure. The theory behind ABT is that teaching people how to accept the uncomfortable feelings associated with a new diet and exercise routine would actually be more effective than just teaching them the basics of diet and exercise alone. Let’s delve in further.

The Study

For the study, researchers assigned nearly 200 overweight or obese participants to two groups. One group was given the standard obesity treatment – education on diet and exercise, like how to monitor calories and remove temptation from the home and work environment. The second group was taught the same things as the first group, but in addition to that, they were also taught how to learn to accept any feelings of discomfort, like a desire to eat, fatigue that comes in the initial stages of weight loss, and the frustration of beginning a new workout routine. Group number two was also trained in mindfulness.

The Results

Researchers followed the two groups for a period of one year and found that the study participants in the group who learned ABT lost an average of 13.3 percent of their body weight, while participants in the group without ABT lost 9.8 percent of their body weight. After another year (a total of two), researchers found that the participants in the ABT group were also more successful at sustaining their weight loss – 64 percent kept the weight off compared to 49 percent.

How Does It Work

ABT is based on a type of talk therapy called Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). When learning ACT, participants learn how to accept uncomfortable physical sensations. They are aware that these feelings will arrive and are just part of the weight loss process. Participants also learn to recognize thoughts that may be getting in the way of their progress; and learn not to accept these thoughts as reality, but overcome them instead.

Of course, because this study is preliminary, more research is necessary before ABT can be considered an effective weight loss strategy, but it gives lots of hope to the phrase “mind over matter”.

Healthy Recipe: Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats

The time has come! It is officially the first day of fall; a day that we’ve been anxiously waiting for. Although it may not feel like it quite yet, it’s time to start loading your arsenal with pumpkin recipes that are both delicious and healthy (and easy, of course).

This first one tastes so sinful that you’ll think you’re doing something wrong, when you’re actually doing everything right.

overnight oats

Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats (Serves 1)

What You Need:

  • ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  • ½ cup coconut milk (you can use almond milk or any other non-dairy milk of your choice!)
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (if you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, use ¼ tsp. cinnamon, 1/8 tsp. nutmeg, and 1/8 tsp. ground ginger)
  • ¼ cup pureed pumpkin (you can use the canned variety, just make sure it’s not pumpkin pie filling!)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons chia seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • Optional add-ins: raisins, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, coconut flakes,  sunflower seeds, almond butter. (make it your own!)

What To Do:

  1. Mix all ingredients (except optional add-ins) in a bowl or glass jar until combined. Cover and refrigerate overnight (or at least five hours).
  2. In the morning, remove mixture from refrigerator and add more liquid if necessary until you reach the desired consistency.
  3. Add optional toppings and enjoy!

Coffee and Weight Loss: Do They Mix?

coffeeWhen it comes to coffee and weight loss, there are two sides of the coin. Some say caffeine can boost your metabolism and others say that coffee is off-limits during a weight loss regimen. So what gives? Are you impeding your progress by drinking that cup of Joe or are contributing to your goals? We took a look at the research to give you answers.

The Research

You may notice that caffeine is a staple in both energy drinks and weight loss pills and that’s because it does, in fact, contribute to weight loss in three major ways. Drinking caffeine speeds up lipolysis – or the process during which your body pulls fat out of fat stores and breaks them down for you to use as energy. To put it in more simple terms: caffeine does slightly boost metabolism and increasing fat burning.

Caffeine is also a stimulant, so it can give you a quick energy burst and increase alertness. When consumed before a workout, caffeine can give you the energy you need to bust through your workout with your best effort.

Coffee can also be classified as an anoretic, which means it suppresses your appetite. As a result, when you drink coffee, you simply eat less because you don’t feel as hungry as you would otherwise.

The Murky Area

The tricky part about caffeine consumption is not if you SHOULD drink it, but rather how much should you be drinking. When caffeine is consumed in excess, it can cause negative effects, like anxiety, high blood pressure, and diarrhea. You want to be sure you’re not overdoing it. Coffee is the most popular caffeinated beverage, but it’s not the only place you’re exposed to caffeine during the day. You’ll want to consider energy drinks, teas, and any supplements as well.

There is no one size fits all recommendation for how much caffeine you should be consuming in a day, since everybody’s body reacts differently to the stimulant, but a good general rule is to stay between 100 and 200 milligrams per day. To put that into perspective, a standard 8-ounce cup of coffee has about 95 milligrams of caffeine. Keep in mind that we said 8 ounces. The cups you get at your favorite coffeehouse are usually at least two times that size.

Sugar and Spice

This is a particularly important point to bring up, especially during pumpkin spice latte season: a big reason that coffee gets a bad rap for contributing to weight gain is because mainly people drink their coffees in the form of sugary, calorie-rich lattes and blended drinks. Even just adding cream and a few sugars to your coffee can turn change it from a metabolism-boosting drink to a weight loss nightmare. If you decide to stick with coffee, it’s best to drink it black. If that’s not an option, try a small amount of skim milk and a natural sweetener, like Stevia.

Fasted Exercise: Should You or Shouldn’t You?

exerciseAlthough it’s getting a lot of attention in the fitness world in recent months, fasted exercise – or working out on an empty stomach – is not a new idea. Some people have been swearing by fasted exercise since the very beginning, while others just swear that it’s a waste of time. Like always, we wanted to get down to the science to figure out if you should be working out after you eat or before, but here’s what we found: it depends. We know that’s not really the answer you want, but the best way for you to workout depends on you as an individual. That being said, we’ve scoured through the science to share with you the reasons people swear by fasted exercise and how it may be able to help you.

Hormone Balance

One of the major ways fasted exercise can optimize by your health is by improving insulin sensitivity – or the way the body responds to insulin, the hormone that takes sugar out of the blood and moves it into your cells for energy. When you eat too much, your body is exposed to a constant barrage of insulin and eventually, it causes an overload. By working out before eating, you’re not only giving your body a break from releasing insulin into the blood, but you’re also burning up any excess insulin that’s there. When your body responds to insulin in a healthy way it makes it easier to lose fat and improves blood flow to muscles, making them easier to build. (Note: if you have Type 1 Diabetes, please speak with your doctor. Fasted exercise may not be right for you.)

Fasted exercise also has an impact on the production of growth hormone (or GH), which not only helps burn fat and increase muscle tissue, but also improves bone health. One of the best ways to increase the body’s production of GH is through fasting. Combine that fasting with exercise and you get all the effects mentioned above, plus the added benefit of growth hormone circulating through your system.

Fat Burn

Research also shows that fasted exercise ensures that carbohydrates, proteins, and fats are being used up properly by the body, rather than simply being stored as fat. Because of this, fasted exercise has been shown to be particularly effective at increasing the rate at which you burn and lose fat.

Note: While fasted exercise does have implications for speeding up fat burning and weight loss, your workout is really only as good as your effort. If you try fasted exercise and you have no energy to get through your workout, that can actually work against you. Listen to your body, and adjust your meal plan accordingly.

Kybella ® – The First and ONLY Injectable Double Chin Treatment

In 2015, the FDA approved Kybella ®, the only injectable treatment for extra fat underneath the chin – the area lovingly referred to as the “double chin”. Before Kybella ®, there were few options for this area. Aside from weight loss, which didn’t even always address the double chin area, the only other real option was plastic surgery, which many patients shied away from since it required them to go under the knife. Now, you can get rid of your double chin with a simple series of injections.

KybellaPatientPR3BeforeAfter(FrontView) KybellaPatientPRI3BeforeAfter(SideView)

How It Works

Kybella ® contains a synthetic version of deoxycholic acid, a molecule that also occurs naturally in the body. As a natural part of your body, deoxycholic acid helps to break down and absorb excess fat from the diet. When injected into the “double chin”, deoxycholic acid destroys the excess fat cells, resulting in a significant reduction in the fullness of the “double chin” area. Even better still, the reduction of these fat cells is for good – meaning that once these cells are destroyed, they can no longer store fat, so further treatment is not generally needed.

How Many Injections Do I Need?

The number of treatment sessions varies from patient to patient, since everyone’s goals are different. Each treatment, or injection, is given about one month apart, and most patients receive six or fewer treatments. The healthcare provider administering Kybella ® will be able to outline a specific treatment plan for you during your consultation.

Important Information

Before receiving Kybella ®, tell your doctor if about any medical conditions or any prescription or over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and supplements you’re taking. It’s also important to let your doctor know if you’ve had any cosmetic treatments on your face, neck, or chin.

The most common side effects of Kybella ® include swelling, bruising, pain, numbness, redness, and areas of hardness in the treatment area. Although rare, some serious side effects, such as nerve injury in the jaw or trouble swallowing, may occur. Discuss all possible side effects with your healthcare provider before receiving Kybella ®.

Product of the Month! CarbCrave Complex

Although the summer is not officially over until September 22nd, the fall is slowly creeping in. We know it’s tempting to ease up on your diet plan and weight loss goals a little bit as the weather starts to cool down, but we’re here to help keep you on track.After all, you know what they say, summer bodies are made in the winter.

Our September monthly special is designed to help maximize fat loss, while giving you the tools you need to curb those carbohydrate cravings that tend to intensify in the cooler months. With this special you receive 4 WEEKS of everything listed below for only $295 (that’s a savings of over $200)!

Physician Consult & Weekly Weigh-ins
Meal Plans
FDA Approved Medications
MetaBlast Supplements
Craveaway Supplements
Weekly Upgraded Injection of B-12
Bi-Weekly Injection of Lipo X
Full Body Analysis on our BODYCOMP Scale
Product of the Month

VM CarbCrave2

This month, for our product of the month, we’re offering CarbCrave Complex with Sensoril®Trim by Pure Encapsulations. CarbCrave Complex is designed to help curb excessive carbohydrate intake and to help moderate appetite by supporting healthy brain chemistry and mood.*

The active ingredients in CarbCrave Complex include:

  • Chromium Picolinate – helps balance blood sugar and control carbohydrate cravings.
  • 5-HTP – a precursor for serotonin, the same neurotransmitter released by the consumption of carbohydrates. Serotonin is thought to be responsible for increased mood – which is why people, especially those under stress, tend to crave carbohydrates.
  • DL-Phenylalanine – supports dopamine and epinephrine production, which are two neurotransmitters responsible for increased well-being.
  • Relora (which is a proprietary blend of magnolia extract and phellodendron extract) – Like chromium picolinate, Relora® helps decrease carbohydrate cravings and leads to a healthier intake of carbohydrates in adults. In one study involving 49 volunteers prone to eating under stress, Relora® helped reduce stress- related snacking of sweets by 76%.
  • Sensoril® Trim Ashwagandha – promotes relaxation and maintains healthy cortisol levels, which helps support glucose and fat metabolism. Ashwagandha also helps improve the body’s response to stress and fatigue.
  • Pyridoxal 5’Phosphate (or activated vitamin B-6) – a vital component in the synthesis of neurotransmitters.*


If you have any questions about CarbCrave Complex or you want to take advantage of our monthly special, contact us TODAY!

DISCLAIMER * These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.