Fat, as in dietary fat, provides a means to not only losing weight but feeling better while doing it.
We now know that excessive consumption of simple carbohydrates is the real reason people have a hard time with weight control. Eating foods high in sugar and refined grains causes blood sugar to spike and then crash, leading to carb cravings and weight gain.There's so much refined carb out there: For example, the average American consumes 152 pounds of sugar a year. Click To Tweet
This explains why fat is the foundation of LCHF (lower-carb, higher-fat) eating plans. Drastically cutting carb intake halts the glucose rollercoaster by switching the body over to steadier-burning fat as its main fuel source.
While LCHF diets are effective, they can take some getting used to for newbies. The good news is that nature provides substances that can help carb cutters get the most from a high-fat diet. One of them is berberine, a plant extract with an extensive history of use in Asia’s traditional healing systems.
The idea behind LCHF dieting is simple: Drop levels of glucose (blood sugar), the body’s usual fuel source, to the point at which the body goes into a state called ketosis and fat becomes the primary fuel. That’s when fat-based substances called ketones are released, which give the keto (short for “ketogenic”) diet its name.
Ketogenic eating offers several benefits. Less glucose leads to lower levels of insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar, which aids weight loss and reduces carb cravings. What’s more, reductions in insulin and glucose help control diseases related to poorly regulated blood sugar, such as type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Controlling Sugar, Boosting Fat Burn
Berberine is a compound found in a number of herbs, such as barberry, goldenseal and Oregon grape. Traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurveda have long used berberine-bearing plants to fight infections and speed wound healing.
Today, scientists know that berberine activates an enzyme called AMPK, which functions as a master switch that controls cellular metabolism. This helps promote blood sugar control and weight management while supporting the efficient use of fat for energy.
Berberine provides other advantages. It reduces glucose production within the liver and increases the breakdown of glucose within cells. And in a study published last year, Chinese researchers found that berberine may also activate brown fat, the kind that produces energy, instead of the white fat linked to weight gain.
In addition, researchers have noted that berberine helps control blood lipids and inflammation. In studies, it has been found to reduce levels of triglycerides and LDL cholesterol (the “bad” type) while increasing amounts of HDL, or “good,” cholesterol.
Turning yourself into a lean, mean, fat-burning machine means supporting sustained weight loss and greater energy production. Berberine can help on both counts.