The human body is amazing. So many processes that go on in parallel that constantly affect each other. For the simplicity, i like to compare the body to the London Underground system, where each underground line has a parallel to a system in the human body. All lines are active at the same time and affect each other when they meet, cross and on the common stations they share. Each line then resembles the nervous system, hormonal system, lymphatic system, blood system etc. – everything affects everything.
Maintenance of all functions and systems of the body is based on the building blocks that we add, i.e. the food we eat, what is absorbed through the skin, the oxygen we breathe and the water we drink. In addition to that we also add supplements/medicines that go in as contributing building blocks.
Weight loss/increase is not a matter of the usual mantra calorie in, calorie out. All the more it’s about what information we give the body that it should do with these building blocks.
Prio 1 is that we must ensure that we get all the building blocks needed in the right amount and mix. If not – the body goes into starvation due to nutritional deficiency – which in turn leads to fat storage deluxe. nutritional deficiency make the body go into save mode. The interpretation is that hard times are upon us and the resources are scarce. Therefore the metabolism is lowered.
If you don’t get the basic nutrition needed to keep all machinery running, the metabolism is slowed down, and you don’t see any results on the scale. As a consequence you may even lower your intake even more – and you have now created a vicious circle where you end up with lower metabolism than what is needed to keep a stable weight on the absolute minimum of nutrients. You’ve been dieting yourself fat!
OK – If you make sure that all the building blocks are in the right amount and mix – all the machinery and functions in the body should be well taken care of, right?
What controls the flow of information in the body and tells the body’s cells what to do is our hormones – in the brain called neurotransmitters.
The building blocks themselves are information that activates the hormones and thus gets certain processes to take place.
For example, when eating a plate of pasta, the amount of glucose (broken down from the pasta) that is absorbed into the liver and sent into the bloodstream increases. In fact, when we i chew sweet/starchy food, the breakdown into glucose already begins in the mouth and by the mere thought of your favorites signals go out activating the chief hormone Insulin to get ready to work – glucose is on its way. The insulin is then released and prepares/starts its work processes.
Besides the building blocks we eat, we also create a lot of other information that tells the body what to do, that affects our hormones/neurotransmitters. That can be stress (physical/mental), thoughts/feelings, sleep, breathing, excercise, social interaction and more..
So – even if you eat all the right things, the body may not prioritize the processes you would like it to, because there are other things in the body that need to be addressed first.
The highest priority is if you are in danger and need to bring yourself into safety – also defined as stress. Here it doesn’t matter if it’s real danger/physical stress – that you have a murderer the house and have to get out of there, or if it’s mental stress – you feel misplaced in your day to day life, the spouse sighs and rolls his/her eyes when you get home, or you may be afraid not to be good enough. All these forms of stress send the same information to the body – danger – note to brain – please help her out of her dangerous situation. The internal stress is the worst, because it can last constantly for years – i.e. you end up in a situation of prolonged stress.
In case of prolonged stress, a lot of nasty things happen in the body. For example, you get reduced gastrointestinal function, body fluids decrease, blood pressure is raised, fatty acids are released for expected rapid consumption and the sex drive decreases – because when you “run for your life” you should have a lot of activity in your muscles and not do nonsense like recovery, reconstruction, digestion or reproduce….
If the gastrointestinal function is switched off or has a reduced function for a long time – then you do not get proper nutrient uptake and the adrenaline/cortisol that increases during stress in turn triggers that nutrients/building blocks are taken from from other processes that will then be lowered or turned off. Magnesium is is essential and used in more than 300 different processes in the body and which of these are maintained when the “stress” eats the magnesium entirely depends on the body’s condition.
Your body and brain constantly fight for your survival and triesthe best i can with the means available. And – it can do the job perfectly for a long time constantly optimizing/prioritising the internal consumption of nutrients. Somewhere along the way, typically after 20,30 or 40 years it cannot fully compensate the processes and we start seeing victims of the metabolic syndrome, burnout, inflammatory diseases, autoimmune diseases etc
The body and brain is magic – it can if you just let it – but it requires us to review the way we live. Buildingblocka first – but dont forget that information like our sense of belonging, sleep, excercise, deep breathing, thoughts and feelings as well as stress is instructions to what our bodies should prioritize with that.
Unfortunately, in today’s society, we no longer live or eat according to what we need as species, and this, of course, also affects our well-being.