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Do Something Simple to Lose Weight

Two natural compounds proven to stop food cravings and burn more calories offer the first step toward a successful weight-loss program.

The holiday season is over and you have vowed to forgo the pastries, sweets and other fattening foods to shed some extra pounds. But your first dinner out, the couple next to you orders a decadent piece of cheesecake. You’re tempted to do the same, but somehow find the will power to pass it up, only to crave it later. Even when you’re out of the restaurant and “safely” at home, the thought of that luscious dessert just won’t leave your mind. Next thing you know, you’re raiding your freezer for that pint of ice cream left over from Christmas dinner.

Have you ever faced a craving problem such as this? If you have, it’s not a sign of weakness or a lack of will power. The craving of carbohydrates and sugar is directly related to an imbalance of the chemical serotonin in the brain. The appetite control center is a little gland in our brain called the hypothalamus where serotonin is produced. As serotonin levels increase, appetite levels decrease.

But there is a natural chemical compound called 5-Hydroxytryptophan (commonly referred to as 5-HTP) found in the griffonia plant that can actually enhance serotonin production and suppress appetite. By taking 5-HTP in supplement form, you can actually control your food cravings and eat less. Sound great? It gets even better.

What if it were possible to not only stop your cravings for carbohydrates and decrease your appetite, but to increase your metabolism as well so that you burn more calories at rest – that’s while you’re just sitting! You’d really have a double- barreled approach to dealing with weight management. Well, this too is possible, and it’s as close as your teacup.

Studies published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition have found that green tea actually has thermogenic effects. A thermogenic effect simply means that you’re burning more calories at rest – and most of these are fat calories! Chemicals in green tea, like catechin polyphenols, rev up your body’s metabolism and make you burn more of your stored fuel to produce heat and energy. Cayenne pepper also has thermogenic properties. Studies show that people who eat spicy foods, such as jalapeno, black and cayenne peppers, have an increase in resting metabolic rate for several hours following their meal.

To lose weight and to keep it off, there are three things you need to do: Become less sedentary and more active, adopt healthier eating habits and consider a supplement to aid in your weight loss.

These lifestyle modifications are the true foundation for losing weight. While it might take time to develop an exercise routine and adjust to new dietary patterns, there’s something simple you can do right now to jumpstart your weight-loss program.

I recommend you look for a natural supplement that will help curb your appetite while revving up your metabolism. Choose a supplement that contains, at the very least, 5-HTP and green tea extract to help achieve these goals. It’s an important first step toward attaining your optimal weight – and ultimately, optimal health.

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Dr. Reginald B. Cherry (drcherry.org) is a member of the American Medical Association, Texas Medical Association, Harris County Medical Society, and the American College of Preventive Medicine. Dr. Cherry has authored numerous articles on Preventive Medicine, emphasizing nutrition and exercise. He also speaks extensively on these topics nationwide and conducts numerous seminars for various groups and organizations. Currently, his weekly television program reaches 80 million homes.