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6 reasons why you're not losing weight – even though you're trying

Published: Friday, December 15, 2017 @ 3:26 PM

If you're having a hard time losing weight, here are some questions to ask yourself Do you snack between meals? How active are you? Is your weekend diet too relaxed? Do you drink enough water? How are you sleeping? Are your medications part of the problem?

How many friends or colleagues have said to you they're trying to lose weight in the past week? Or perhaps you're that friend or co-worker.

RELATED: Want to lose more weight? Ditch your diet for a couple of weeks, study suggests

We often tell others – and ourselves – that we're aiming to shed a few pounds, but we don't see the results we'd like. If this describes you, you're certainly not alone.

The latest statistics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reveal that more than 36 percent of U.S. adults are obese. Furthermore, a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reveals that approximately half of overweight and obese adults say they are trying to lose weight.

Many of these people try for months or years, often failing to see the results they'd like. If this problem sounds all too close to home, here are some questions to ask yourself.

Little Debbie snacks might be undergoing a chance in product.(Jeff Greenberg/UIG via Getty Images)

1. Do you snack between meals?

You may think you're careful about counting your calories. You eat a balanced diet, and not too much.

But while your meals may be healthy enough and not too large, what about the snacks you eat between them?

Dr. Melina Jampolis, a board-certified physician nutrition specialist, recently wrote for CNN, saying that many of her patients have calorie "amnesia."

"People frequently forget about the little things during or between meals that add up calorically and can interfere significantly with weight loss," Dr. Jampolis writes.

To remedy this problem, Dr. Jampolis recommends keeping a precise calorie journal. This way you'll know exactly how much you're consuming and where you can cut back.

2. How active are you?

Even if you're eating healthy, you may not be nearly active enough. If you're one who drives to work, sits all day at a desk, drives home, sits on the couch and then crawls into bed, you may want to re-examine how much you're moving.

While 10,000 steps is usually the recommended daily minimum for healthy adults, if you're trying to lose weight, this may not be nearly enough.

According to a 2014 report in U.S. News and World Report, an analysis of some 10,000 people (who on average lost 66 pounds and kept them off for at least five years) revealed that they increased their number of daily steps by about 4,000 on average. They maintained this routine for at least 16 weeks, but even that only brought their weight down by an average of just over 3 pounds.

So, if you're serious about weight loss, you'll want to consider starting a regular cardio or gym routine to burn calories at a faster rate.

3. Is your weekend diet too relaxed?

Most of the time when dieting, it's normal to take a routine break, often on weekends.

If you do this, maybe you should examine how much of a break you're giving yourself, according to rippedbody.com. When you drop your diet Friday evening through Sunday evening – aka all weekend – it might be countering the benefits of your strict weekly discipline.

Remember, a few beers, late night snacks and rich desserts can add up quickly. Try being more disciplined about treating yourself. Maybe just one day a week from now on?

(Jan Willem Geertsma/Freeimages)

4. Do you drink enough water?

Most of us don't realize how important drinking an adequate amount of water is to our health and weight loss.

According to Health Line, a 12-week weight loss study showed that people who drank half a liter (or 17 oz) of water 30 minutes before meals lost 44 percent more weight. Additionally, drinking water has been shown to burn calories at an increased 24 to 30 percent over a period of 1.5 hours.

And remember, drinking other beverages – especially soft drinks, which are loaded with sugar – doesn't provide the same effect.

RELATED: Lose the belly pooch: 7 do’s and don’ts to accomplish a flat stomach

5. How are you sleeping?

It may seem unrelated, but studies have shown that inadequate sleep is correlated with obesity.

A survey of scientific studies from around the world revealed that "short sleep duration may be associated with the development of obesity from childhood to adulthood." According to the research, adults who sleep too little have a 55 percent greater risk of becoming obese, whereas children see a disturbing 89 percent greater risk.

RELATED: Here’s what happens to your body when you don’t get enough sleep

6. Are your medications part of the problem?

According to Dr. Jampolis, not all physicians are adequately trained in obesity medicine and nutrition. She cautions that some may inadvertently prescribe medications that lead to weight gain or hinder weight loss.

"Benadryl, Ambien, benzodiazepines, older antidepressant and antipsychotic medications, Paxil, beta-blockers (for high blood pressure), several diabetes medications including insulin, sulfonylureas and thialidazones, and some contraceptive methods, especially Depo-Provera," all have been linked to weight gain.

If you're struggling to lose weight and you're taking one of these medications, you may want to discuss the issue with your doctor.

The questions listed above highlight some of the most commons reasons people don't see the results they desire when trying to shed pounds. 

There are, of course, other possibilities as well. If none of the above seems to fit your situation, you may want to speak with a registered dietitian or your doctor to analyze your specific case.

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Oklahoma family seeking medical marijuana for child hopes for legalization

Published: Monday, January 15, 2018 @ 5:43 AM

Via FOX23.com
FOX23.com
Via FOX23.com(FOX23.com)

As Oklahoma voters prepare to make a decision on legalizing medical marijuana, one family is using cannabis oil to help a young girl with a rare medical condition.

>> Watch the news report here

>> On FOX23.com: Oklahoma Gov. Fallin sets election date for medical marijuana measure

KOKI has been following the story of Jaqie Angel Warrior for years now. Her mother, Brittany Warrior, said she needs cannabis oil to help with the seizures she has every day.

>> On FOX23.com: New poll finds 62 percent of Oklahomans support medical marijuana measure

Jaqie Angel Warrior suffers from a rare and potentially deadly form of epilepsy. Traditional pharmaceuticals haven't worked well for her, the family says.

She started having seizures at 5 months old. At 20 months old, the family put her on cannabis oil at the advisement of her neurologist. Since then, she has been weaned off all pharmaceuticals.

Jaqie's mother, Brittany Warrior, said they were losing all hope before they tried cannabis oil.

>> Read more trending news 

"Prior to starting cannabis, Jaqie had anywhere from 150 to 300 seizures a day. She was catatonic and life was fading out of her before my eyes," she said.

The family has traveled back and forth, and even temporarily moved to states with legalized medical marijuana.

Now that State Question 788 is on the ballot in Oklahoma, Brittany Warrior hopes that voters will support the measure to help her child.

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Are you hooked on sugar? 5 clues you might be addicted to sugar

Published: Friday, January 12, 2018 @ 11:28 AM

These 9 Healthy Sounding Foods have more sugar than a Krispy Kreme doughnut Bottle of Naked juice green machine smoothie: 28 grams or about three Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnuts ¼ cup of Sun Maid raisins: 29 grams or three Krispy Kreme doughnuts Chobani blueberry greek yogurt: 15 grams or 1 ½ Krispy Kreme doughnuts Nature Valley oats and honey crunchy granola bar: 12 grams or about one Krispy Kreme doughnut Vitaminwater: up to 32 grams of sugar or about three Krispy Kreme doughnuts One cup of Mo

What was known to previous generations as a "sweet tooth" is known to ours as a widespread health threat.

Too much dietary sugar causes or contributes to ailments and diseases from insomnia tonight to kidney failure down the road. 

»RELATED: This is what 12 Diet Cokes a day can do to your body, according to Atlanta nutritionists

One study from University of California San Francisco found that drinking sugary drinks like soda can age a body as quickly as cigarettes.

"Our high-sugar diets are a big part of why more than one-third of American adults are clinically obese," Self magazine reported. "Obesity can lead to insulin resistance, which ramps up blood sugar levels, which leads to diabetes."

And if that wasn't enough bad news about the sweet stuff, experts say that the brain responds to sugar the same way it would to addictive drugs. Eating sugar creates a wave of dopamine and serotonin, the brain's "feel-good" chemicals, just as certain drugs do, including cocaine, according to Self. Just like an emerging drug habit, a body craves more sugar after the initial high.

"You then become addicted to that feeling, so every time you eat it you want to eat more," Gina Sam, director of the Gastrointestinal Motility Center at The Mount Sinai Hospital, explained to Self.

Mark Hyman, M.D. cited a study from David Ludwig, author of Ending the Food Fight, and his Harvard colleagues and concluded that "foods that spike blood sugar are biologically addictive" and they "trigger a special region in the brain called the nucleus accumbens that is known to be 'ground zero' for conventional addiction, such as gambling or drug abuse."

Think you might be hooked on sugar? Hyman has your answer.

He indicated five clues that a person has become biologically addicted to foods that spike blood sugar: 

  • You consume certain foods even if you are not hungry because of cravings.
  • You worry about cutting down on certain foods.
  • You feel sluggish or fatigued from overeating.
  • You have health or social problems (of the sort that affect school or work) because of food issues −but continue to eat the same way in spite of the negative consequences.
  • You need increased amounts of the sugary foods you crave to experience any pleasure from consuming them, or to reduce negative emotions.

»RELATED: Sugar can fuel cancerous cells, study says 

Other signs that you're eating too much sugar

Even if you're not eating sugar at rates that could be described as an addiction, don't be too quick to breathe a sigh of relief. You can be eating way too much of the sweet stuff without being entirely hooked. Sugar detox expert Brooke Alpert, M.S., R.D. and other medical experts described these red flags that you're consuming too much sugar:

Studies show that your brain responds to sugar the same way it does to cocaine.(Contributed by hivewallpaper.com/For the AJC)

You eat more sugar and then crave more sugar. "It becomes a vicious and addictive cycle," Alpert noted in Self. Part of the cycle is that your taste buds have adapted and you need more sugar to get the same taste, the other component is that the sugar high is followed by a crash. "By eating a high sugar diet, you cause a hormonal response in your body that's like a wave, it brings you up and then you crash down and it triggers your body to want more sugar," Alpert said.

You feel sluggish during the day. "Energy is most stable when blood sugar is stable, so when you're consuming too much sugar, the highs and lows of your blood sugar lead to highs and lows of energy," she added. Too much sugar doesn't leave room in your diet for protein and fiber, which are both important for sustained energy.

Your skin breaks out a lot. "Some people are sensitive to getting a spike in insulin from sugar intake, which can set off a hormonal cascade that can lead to a breakout like acne or rosacea," Rebecca Kazin, M.D., of the Johns Hopkins Department of Dermatology, told SELF. Binging on sugar may show up on your face within a few days.

You look old before your time. Eating too much sugar can cause long-term damage to skin proteins−collagen and elastin − leading to premature wrinkles and aging, nutritional therapist Natalie Lamb told Harper's Bazaar. Less desirable gut bacteria also feed on sugar, which might lead to inflammation of the sort seen in skin conditions like eczema.

You're losing sleep. People who eat sugary foods late at night might experience a rush of energy precisely when the body needs to be preparing for rest, resulting in insomnia. "If you're someone who has trouble sleeping, then it might help to reduce the sugar in your diet and be kinder to your gut," Lamb noted.

»RELATED: Trying to beat those sugar cravings? Go to sleep, says a new study

Your brain gets foggy, especially after a meal. When you eat a lot of sugar, blood sugar levels rise and fall too quickly. "Poor blood sugar control is a major risk for cognitive issues and impairment," Alpert said.

How low should you go?

If you're determined to reduce your sugar consumption, a reasonable amount might seem like a deprivation. (Why does sugar have to taste so good?)

The World Health Organization recently recommended a sharp drop in sugar intake for just about everyone on the planet. Just 5 percent of calories should ideally come from added sugars, the WHO advised. That translated to about 6 teaspoons of added sugar a day, about the amount in one 8-ounce bottle of sweetened lemon iced tea. The average American takes in almost four times the WHO recommendation, or 22 teaspoons of added sugar a day.

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Trying to beat those sugar cravings? Go to sleep, says a new study

Published: Thursday, January 11, 2018 @ 3:20 PM

If you're trying to lose weight, dump added sugar from your kitchen. Added sugars are those that are put into food or drink during processing or preparation. Foods such as fruits contain naturally occurring sugar, but they also provide important nutrients such as vitamins, protein and fiber. Added sugars may make you feel tired and hungry within an hour or two of eating them. You'll be tempted to reach for another sugary food, adding even more empty calories to your diet, and the cycle may repeat itse

Cookies, and brownies and sodas, oh my! If those thoughts are often on your mind, you may need a little more sleep, according to a new study out of the United Kingdom.

The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition on Tuesday, found that sleeping longer hours may reduce cravings for sugary foods.

»RELATED: Sugar can fuel cancerous cells, study says

A small group of 21 participants participated in a 45-minute sleep consultation at the beginning of the study. By following simple tips such as establishing a relaxing pre-bedtime routine and going to bed at a recommended time, they were able to sleep up to 1.5 hours more each night. Another group didn't receive the consultation.

Each person in the study wore a wrist monitor to record his or her sleep for seven days, and participants also recorded what they ate during this time period. When participants increased their amount of sleep, they reduced the amount of sugar in their diet by as much as 10 grams the next day compared to the amount they took in before the study. They also ate fewer carbs when compared to participants who didn't sleep more.

"We have shown that sleep habits can be changed with relative ease in healthy adults using a personalized approach," lead researcher Haya Al Khatib, a professor from in the Department of Nutritional sciences at King's College London, said in the statement. "Our results also suggest that increasing time in bed for an hour or so longer may lead to healthier food choices."

»RELATED: 5 easy ways to improve your sleep 

The group that slept longer was given a suggestions on how to get a better night's sleep , like avoiding caffeine before bedtime, establishing a relaxing routine and not going to bed too full or hungry — as well as a recommended bedtime suited to their lifestyle.

"Sleep duration and quality is an area of increasing public health concern and has been linked as a risk factor for various conditions," Khatib said. "We have shown that sleep habits can be changed with relative ease in healthy adults using a personalized approach."

In addition to spending more time sleeping, the following tips from Live ScienceWebMD and doctoroz.com can help you reduce your sugar cravings:

Don't have sugary foods at home – if you don't have sugary foods in your house, they won't be as easily accessible.

Choose another sweet treat – Satisfy your sweet tooth with a piece of fruit instead of candy or a similar unhealthy snack.

Keep portion-controlled servings – Buy sugary snacks that are individually wrapped, such as ice cream sandwiches, and limit yourself to eating just one at a time.

Dilute sugary drinks – If you love sugary sodas or juice, try diluting them with an equal amount of seltzer to cut your sugar intake in half. As you get used to the reduced sugar, continue to increase the amount of seltzer.

Try chewing gum – Chewing a stick of gum can help reduce sugar cravings.

Combine foods – Satisfy your sugar craving by combining what you're craving with a healthier option. For example, try eating chocolate chips mixed with some almonds.

Eat regularly – If you eat regular meals and snacks, your blood sugar is less likely to dip and cause you to make unhealthy choices and reach for sugary foods.

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'I don’t believe it myself': Ohio breast cancer survivor, former teacher turns 104

Published: Thursday, January 11, 2018 @ 8:10 AM

Via Journal-News.com
Journal-News.com
Via Journal-News.com(Journal-News.com)

To celebrate being 104 years old, like Ruth Ann Slade did Tuesday afternoon, one must have good genes and what her friend called “inner strength.”

>> Watch an interview with Slade here

Slade, who spent 37 years as a first- and second-grade teacher in Poasttown, Ohio, has beaten breast cancer twice and persevered after her leg was pinned under a patio door for 18 hours as her body temperatures fell to dangerous levels.

“I see a survivor,” said Chuck Veidt, 60, who cares for Slade in his West Alexandria Road residence. “She is something else. A true survivor. Her mind is better than mine. She’s a tough act to follow.”

When asked about her 104th birthday, Slade said: “I don’t believe it myself.”

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news 

About 10 years ago, Veidt checked on Slade in her home up the street from his to see if she needed anything from the grocery store. He was shocked to see her lying face down in the kitchen as about a foot of snow accumulated just outside the door. She was rushed to Middletown Regional Hospital, where her body temperature returned to safe levels after two hours. She suffered frost bite.

She later told Veidt she listened to the furnace turn off and on so she wouldn’t fall asleep.

Diagnosed with breast cancer in 1979, she had her left breast removed. Thirty-one years later, the cancer returned in her right breast.

Longevity is part of Slade’s DNA. Her father and mother lived to be 91 and 89, respectively, though she has buried her two younger brothers and sister.

She credits eating fresh food from the family garden for her long life, but Veidt chimed in that Slade often told him not being married was the reason.

Born in a farmhouse in Madison Twp. in 1914, Slade graduated from Middletown High School in 1932. Her last MHS class reunion was her 60th in 1992. She’d probably be the only one still alive for her 86th class reunion.

“A class of one,” Veidt said with a smile.

>> Read more trending news 

Slade taught two years in a one-room school house, then 35 years after Poasttown built a new school. One of her former first-grade students, Homer Hartman, 86, attended Slade’s birthday party. Before Hartman was wheeled into the house, Slade gave a warning: “He’s going to tell a bunch of lies about me.”

Hartman didn’t disappoint. While he called Slade his “favorite” teacher, he said she frequently put him in the corner of the classroom.

“She didn’t let me get away with much,” he said.

She responded: “I never put him in the corner. None of my students.”

Slade retired in 1972 and said there is no way she could teach today because of the lack of discipline shown by some students.

“Kids would tell me where to go,” she said with a smile.

Is Slade afraid to die? She just shook her head.

“A new experience for me,” she said.

She paused, then added: “When (God) comes for me, I will be ready to go.”

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