Do you ever wonder how well, or otherwise your state of health is? Do you often think, maybe it would be good to chat to a naturopath or a nutritionist, but just never get around to it? Have you been thinking as the year rolls on, you really should get your health back on track, especially after those Easter over indulgences.
Well now there’s no excuse as next Thursday 20th April is your opportunity for a complimentary 15-minute health and wellness check with our naturopath, Katie Urbanik and Clinical Nutritionist, Sofia Keady. This health check, which only costs $5, gives you the opportunity to chat to our practitioners as well as undertake a –
- Bio Impedance Analysis (BIA)
- Zinc Test
- Acid/Alkaline Test
Now I can hear you saying – what on earth is a Bio Impedance Analysis. This set of scales not only measures our weight, but more importantly it accurately assesses, through a small electrical current, our body fat percentage, muscle mass, hydration levels, bone mass, visceral fat levels and metabolic age. Why would I want to know that? I hear you ask. Well, fat percentage is an obvious one. There are many who want to lose fat, but have you ever had the experience of starting a new exercise and diet regime and one week in, you’re feeling great, your clothes fit better, you feel more energised, and you get on the scales only to find that you have hardly lost any weight or worse still you have put weight on! Many people at this point loose heart and decide to throw the whole plan out the window.
Time and time again, when we have been using the BIA scales in our Detox and Weight loss Program, we have seen that fat percentage decreases and muscle mass increases even if the overall weight has remained relatively unchanged. This is significant, because as you might be aware, muscle weighs more than fat and as we gain more muscle mass our basal metabolic rate (BMR) goes up- this means that our body readily burns more calories, making it easier for us to shift the extra kilos. It is the fat percentage that we want to concentrate on reducing, not only for our looks, but for our longevity, as epidemiological studies have shown that it is fat loss and not “weight loss” that increases longevity. So really, just looking at overall weight is not that helpful.
Now on to hydration levels: Needless to say, water is essential to life; it is a major component of synovial fluid, muscles, organs and blood and it is a substrate for endless chemical reactions in the body. Low hydration is associated with increased inflammation (arthritis, allergies, eczema) and oxidative stress (linked to diabetes, cancer, autoimmune conditions). In addition, research in young adults shows that mild dehydration corresponding to only 1% to 2% of body weight loss can lead to significant impairment in cognitive function. Mild dehydration in infants is associated with confusion, irritability, and lethargy and may decrease cognitive performance. Good hydration levels are linked to greater athletic performance, increase cognitive ability, optimal body functioning and reduced inflammation. Knowing your hydration levels gives us the knowledge on how to tailor your weight loss program for you. I would normally suggest that someone with low hydration levels not only increase their water intake, but also their antioxidant intake, for optimal cellular hydration and to reduce oxidative stress.
We all know how important it is to have good bones, especially as we get older. The BIA measures the amount of bone (bone mineral level, calcium, or other minerals) in the body. While bone structure is unlikely to make noticeable changes in a short period, it is important that you develop and maintain healthy bones. If your bone score is low, then you need to have it checked by your GP. We have also had great results with our alkalising diet combined with a good calcium supplement.
Perhaps most important is our visceral fat score; this is an indicator of how much fat is stored in and around our organs. High levels of visceral fat have been implicated in a greater cardiovascular risk, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome, and even some cancers. A high level of visceral fat means that our organs can’t function effectively. This is often a good reason to undertake a detox prior to our weight loss program. The liver and the kidneys, as well as the intestines need to be working properly in order for us to mobilise fat and build lean muscle and to absorb the proper nutrients from our food intake. We can’t do this when your organs are covered in fatty deposits!
Now if that hasn’t motivated you, perhaps your metabolic age (BMR age) will shock you into action. As I mentioned before your BMR reflects the amount of calories that our body needs to function effectively at rest. The BIA scale calculates our BMR and tells us the average age associated with that type of metabolism. If our BMR Age is higher than our actual age, it is time to turn back the clock taking stock of our health. This is where chatting to Katie and Sofia may be helpful.
The other simple test is a Zinc Test. This is a simple taste test which can indicate if we are low in zinc. Low zinc levels can contribute to various health problems and can be simply addressed by taking a zinc supplement, but of course it is good to be tested first.
The final test will be an acid/alkaline test which we have been talking about for some weeks. This is a simple test and once again if our bodies are over acidic, we are likely to suffer from various health problems.