Remember the five ways that bodies adjust to any famine experience that we talked about in Chapter 1? Here they are again: Lowered metabolic rate, decreased physical activity, increased appetite, and cravings for sweets and fatty foods. Don’t forget, once a famine is underway, all bodies kick into this five-point preservation mode. They do this by producing bio-chemicals in response to under eating. Researchers have identified some of these bio-chemicals.
OK IT’S TIME TO DIET What’s Happening Behind the Scenes Photo Gallery
Researchers have found that a change in body enzymes occurs concomitantly with weight lost from dieting. These researchers report that when obese people lose weight, they start overproducing an enzyme, lipoprotein lipase that makes it easier to get fat again. The effect of these high enzyme levels is to make weight gain far easier for the formerly obese than it is for people who were never fat in the first place. Also, the fatter people were initially, the more of the fat-regaining enzyme they produced once they were thin. It appears that the more weight a person loses; the more their body fights to regain the weight. These things are all accomplished by bio-chemicals produced in response to dieting. There are probably many such bio-chemicals. More on this fascinating topic in Chapter 6.
So Where Do We Go from Here If Dieting Always Backfires?
It doesn’t make sense that you can just eat and eat and lose weight, does it? No, it doesn’t. Eating less food than your body is using is requiredfor weight loss, but there’s a vast difference between waging war with your body and making peace instead. This entire book is filled with descriptions of the war —we know all about that. So, what does peace with your body look like? To put it simply, the famines end. The famines are the crux of the war. When you end the famines, your body can comfortably make adjustments to let go of the insurance fat it stored to prepare for upcoming famines. Once the famines are gone for good, your body can readapt by getting rid of fat that has become maladaptive. Your body and you have a new need, to use up the fat it doesn’t need anymore.
The way to do this is coming up, but first let’s take a look at some other factors that really influence your weight, and then some long-held beliefs that may be holding you back but are just plain untrue.