Weed For Weight Loss?
With weight loss supplements flying off of shelves across America daily to create at a 64 billion dollar a year industry, it should come as no surprise to learn that according to statistics 74% of American males are overweight or obese.
In 2012 my own weight had ballooned out to 265 lbs... a number that my height did not have any notable bearing on, regardless of what any well intentioned friend or relative may have tried telling me. My bones were pretty normal. The rest of me was big.
I had always sort of struggled back and forth through a lifetime of fluctuating weight, with a few sporadic months each year spent in the gym trying to lean out. The end result was usually the same; I'd get impatient and give up, regaining the weight I had fought to lose and retreating until the fitness urge struck again.
After yo-yo dieting for a decade, I finally found a routine that worked using the popular weight loss product Hydroxycut.
Taking the product as directed, I began combing my new aid with a serious training regime. I dropped my body fat into the single digit zone, which earned me a feature in Men's Fitness magazine and significantly bolstered my athletic horizon, even earning me a supplement sponsor to fuel my ambition.
Given my own personal experience, and the countless stories of others around the world, it can be hard to challenge the efficacy of products such as these.
In a society that is driven by speed based results, weight loss products provide a seemingly invaluable ally in the fray against the fat.
With the genius of retrospect however, it was only after I used the product that I became fully aware of just how much jeopardy I had put my health in.
What myself, (and many others), failed to grasp is that most of the miraculous claims made by these companies are nothing more than deceptive merchantry. Popular weight loss products, like Hydroxycut, often come with a variety of impressive claims on the label: “Clinically proven, scientifically tested” and “without any unwanted side effects” are all part of marketing misnomers used to lure you in.
In an industry that is completely unregulated and unapproved by the FDA, there's a whole lot they can get away with too.
Many people on the quest for optimal health and a slimmer waistline have unwittingly turned to Hydroxycut, trusting it's claims. The truth is that in taking Hydroxycut to improve your health, you may actually have been adversely affecting it.
The product has been recalled twice; once because of a death and the second was a large number of reported liver damage cases that brought “America's best selling weight loss product” off the shelf. These rigorous “clinically proven studies” also fail to provide the number of subjects tested and other relevant data most would consider pertinent, like where the study was published so you can judge the results for yourself.
So we all want to look good naked but now with the idea of losing your liver, or dying, making weight loss supplements appear more like clinically proven failures, what do we do now?
Is there a safe alternative to unregulated snake oils, like Hydroxycut?
According to a 2013 study published in the American Journal of Medicine, there is.
Researchers conducted the study with the help of 4657 men and women over a five year period and came up with this conclusion:
“ Of the participants in our study sample, 579 were current marijuana users and 1975 were past users. In multivariable adjusted models, current marijuana use was associated with 16% lower fasting insulin levels (95% confidence interval [CI], −26, −6) and 17% lower HOMA-IR (95% CI, −27, −6). We found significant associations between marijuana use and smaller waist circumferences. Among current users, we found no significant dose-response.”
If you're not a scientist, what that means for your back fat is basically this- Marijuana causes your body's insulin, a hormone that triggers fat storage, to be produced at a slower rate, which in turn affects the speed at which fat is produced in your body. Further simplified- cannabis= low insulin levels = you burn more fat and store less = stay lean.
Goodbye back fat!
Art Glass, the Author of The Marijuana Diet, swears by the use of Cannabis to shed the pounds. His book recounts his own weight loss journey, which he decided to embark upon after tipping the scales at 345 pounds. His book includes recipes, meal plans and his own self discovered implementation of effectively medicating cannabis to reduce fat.
You're sold, right?
If you're like me, having a love for smoking pot and a desire to stay reasonably lean, chances are you're starting your new diet with a fat bowl right now. Before you start freaking out about getting the munchies and sabotaging your six pack before you've even begun to notice it though, I've got some good news for you.
Some strains, particularly landrace strains from Africa have actually been shown to reduce appetite because of the antagonist cannabinoid THCV, that actually works to block your CB receptors from processing the THC, effectively keeping the munchies at bay.
The news gets even better- even though the THC is being blocked, strains that are high in THCV still have the same psychoactive effect and also tend to take effect more quickly. You get higher, quicker and burn fat at the same time, with zero negative side effects.
You're probably on the way to your bud tender by this time, so you should keep an eye out for these strains: Sour Diesel, Cherry Pie and Jack the Ripper. They are all on the top 5 appetite reducing weed list, with Blue Dream and Skunk #1 rounding out that list, your options sound like a pothead’s wet dream.
However, if you're still trying to decide whether marijuana as a fat burner is for you, consider this- with states around the country beginning to legalize marijuana, using cannabis as a completely safe weight loss aid is a new opportunity for millions of people to change their life.
The only question now is, do you want to change your life?
Gotta run for now, stay healthy folks.
(James Munroe writes for Cannabis.net in a series called "Through The Eyes Of A Stoner)
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