Kick start your weight loss …Empty your liver

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Kick start your weight loss and empty your liver! What does your liver have to do with trying to lose weight?  Understanding the information here will help you understand how your body works so you can feed it properly and lose weight while doing so.

As you eat, your body will convert food into energy to be used immediately or store it for later use.  Your body will store this energy in a few places throughout your body; in your blood, in your liver and in the form of fat.  To make it easy to understand look at energy as if it were money. The energy in your blood is like cash in your pocket, it’s there for your daily use. The energy in your liver is like money in your checking account, there is a limited amount in the account but you can make a quick withdrawal when you run out of cash in your pocket and eventually you’ll need to transfer more into the checking account to replenish it.  The energy stored as fat is like money in your savings or investment account; it is there for when you really need it, if at all.

We each store about 2,000 calories of glucose in our liver in the form of glycogen. This is our checking account of energy.  As you go about your daily activity your body will first use the energy/glucose that is in your blood stream.  It’s readily available for you to use as you need it to function throughout the day.

But when the glucose in your blood drops i.e. our blood sugar gets low, your liver kicks in and converts its stores of glycogen to glucose and pours it into your blood.  This is what keeps you going. But what happens when your liver becomes depleted of glycogen (your checking account is empty)? Your body will turn to your fat (your savings account) and begin to burn that for energy.

The average person will burn about 2200 Calories per day just going about their daily life, taking care of basic needs. If you consume less than 2200 Calories you will not get enough Calories to maintain your weight and you will begin to lose weight. To lose weight faster and more efficiently it is important to consume the right foods. Some foods are more easily converted to glycogen to be stored in the liver. So by limiting the amount of food that can be converted to glycogen and stored in the liver you’ll force the body to turn to fat stores for energy.

Foods such as proteins and fats can be converted into glucose but not as efficiently, so these are better choice foods. The foods that are most efficiently converted into glucose are starches and sugars.  So if you want to lose weight you will want to lower your “carb” intake. I.E. Consume less sugar and less starch.

Eliminate the sugars and reduce your complex carb intake to about 15% of your daily calories. This will begin to deplete the glycogen levels in your liver. Once glycogen levels are low you will begin to feel better and lose weight.

The first 24 to 48 hours are always the worst as you reduce your glucose stores. You’ll feel lousy because your body wants to have the carbs back. But if you get through this short period your body will begin to convert the fat in your body into glucose. The conversion of fat into glucose is an inefficient process for your body and you will lose weight much more quickly than just reducing your overall calories.

I hope that helps you with your understanding of the physiological basis of weight loss.