Secrets to Losing Weight From Dr. Leann Poston MD, MBA, MEd

July 21, 2023

This episode, we have our very own Leann Poston, MD, MBA, MEd. She’s written over 150 articles on our website, and is very accomplished in her field. We talk about weight management and break down how our body processes food, to how you could make a difference in your own body.

TREATMENTS MENTIONED

TIMESTAMPS

  • 00:00 Start
  • 0:25 Introductions
  • 4:57 How to Simplfy Complex Medical Concepts
  • 6:57 How to Get Accurate Medical Information Online
  • 11:46 Obesity in the United States
  • 16:12 BMI vs Calipers vs Measurements vs Scale
  • 20:47 The Effect of Sleep on Weight Loss
  • 24:01 Which is More Important: Diet or Exercise?
  • 28:33 Is the Timing of Meals Important?
  • 33:16 How Can I Handle Hunger?
  • 38:16 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
  • 43:36 Influence of Social Interactions on Diet
  • 45:52 Small Changes Can Make a Big Impact
  • 50:24 When to Start Thinking About Medical Weight Loss
  • 57:24 Semaglutide Guidelines
  • 1:03:25 Effects of Naltrexone and Oxytocin on Weight Loss
  • 1:07:40 Mindsets: Spending Calories
  • 1:09:04 Conclusion

Leann: I don’t know about you, but are you likely to order that hamburger and french fries when you’re in a crowd with other people or when you’re by yourself?

Derek: Unfortunately, yes. Yeah unfortunately, I am.


Narrator: Welcome to the Invigor Medical Podcast, where our mission is to provide personalized medical care through scientifically backed education and wellness solutions. 

Chris: Hello everyone and welcome to the Invigor Medical Podcast. My name is Chris Donovan and we’re back with Derek Berkey. Derek, how are you, man?

Derek: Good. How are you doing?

Chris: Doing good. We’ve got a really cool guest today. 

Derek:  Oh, yeah. 

Chris: She’s written over 150 articles on our website. She has the MD, MBA and a couple of other acronyms at the end of her name that I’ll let her explain later on. And she’s also been featured on MSN, Business Insider Health Line and a lot more. You can find her at leannposton.com or like I said, she’s written 150 articles on the Invigor Medical website.

Dr. Leann Poston, thank you so much for joining the show today.

Leann: Hi. I’m glad to be here.

Chris: Yeah. So you work with us. You write a lot of these articles. I’ve read many of them. So you’re very well versed in the medical field. But why medicine? I always ask this question to all my guests first. What made you say that you wanted to help people and go into medicine?

Leann: I have always wanted to be a doctor. I mean, it was grade school age when I wanted to be a doctor. I’ve always liked science. I’ve always liked trying to understand things. And that was probably the benefit and the drawback of me going into medicine, because as you know, I’ve had a few career changes.

Chris: Yes.

Leann: I started off in medicine, I started off in pediatrics, went to medical school, did my residency in pediatrics.

I loved the families and spending time with the families and taking care of children. But I found that it wasn’t quite intellectually challenging enough, if you know what I mean. I mean, I sometimes say I have career ADD because I like to try different things all the time. So I went to the emergency room at Children’s Hospital and worked there for a while.

You think that would be exciting enough for me, and it was for a while. And then eventually the practice I was with, got bought out, moved down to Cincinnati, which is about an hour and 15 minutes from here. And I had the option of moving or doing something else. Well, I intended to join another practice, but this teaching job just fell in my lap, four days later.

It just seemed like it was sent to do. So I did that for 12 years, which really allowed me to spend time with my kids, have summers off with them, help them with their schoolwork of all games, all that kind of stuff. And then when they graduated from school, I went back to medical school, I graduated from and became the assistant dean of student affairs in admissions and their’s where I got my MBA and my master’s in education.

And I stayed there and set up their admissions software, their career services platform audit and help with their curriculum development and all of that for about three and a half years. I had finished my degrees. All of their software was set up. There was nothing left to do except for just sit back and let it ride. And so, then I went out on my own, and I’ve been out for the last three years writing.

Chris: Wow. Show off much? You are amazing. That is great. Now, when you went into the career at the school as a teacher, did you find that more fulfilling than working in, like the emergency room or the kids hospital?

Leann: I did. You know, I’m still working with kids. I taught at the high school. I taught at many different levels: high school, university and medical school level. And so this age group is the 16 to 24 year old age group. And that was great because I still got to help them with their psychological problems and their social problems and get a little bit of medical advice and then got to teach them anatomy and physiology and medical genetics and a whole bunch of different things.

And I had new opportunities, too. I got to go in some of the big genome, trying to think, I can’t think of the name of the place. But anyway, they have this program for educators that wanted to get involved in genome mapping and brain PCR and doing all kinds of stuff like that. And so I had that opportunity too.

Chris: That is awesome.

Leann: It was great. And it gave me a really, varied background and the ability to take really complex topics and make them understandable for anyone who wants to understand them. And so writing has worked really well.

Derek: Leann, I can definitely attest to that. I’ve been a big fan of your articles. I’ve read through as many as I can. There’s so many, and they’re so varied. And there’s a lot of really amazing content there. Actually, I wanted to ask you a question. You know, part of what we’re trying to do here at the Invigor Medical Podcast is to create content that is very easily understandable for anybody to be able to listen to and to be able to understand and improve their lives.

What are some, like, tips or tricks that you would give to, like, make complicated functions within the body simple to understand?

Leann: Well, the first thing that you have to move away from is complicated language doesn’t make you look smart.

Derek: Right. 

Leann: You know, that’s the first thing that people have to understand, is that, you know, you may have all these fancy degrees and things like that, but it takes a whole lot more work to take, you know, something like the kidney, which is one of the most complicated organs out that we have, and turn it into something that people can understand because it would be so much easier just to regurgitate the stuff that you learn in anatomy and physiology class and put all those words out there and say, “Oh, there it is. Figure it out,” you know?

So that was the first thing I would say is try to learn how to make it simple. There’s lots of training for that. I mean, plain writing is more than just a trend now. It’s an accessibility issue, you know, to make it so that everyone who wants access to medical education or medical information should have access to it.

So, you know, you may have noticed in the medical journals, in addition to the actual journal article, there are plain language summaries now, that’s also written at a sixth grade level. And there are videos that explain what the purpose of the research is and what benefit it’s going to have for society.

Derek: That’s amazing. You know, it reminds me of that quote from Albert Einstein. I can’t quote it word for word off the top of my head. But it’s, like, if you can’t explain it simply to a child, then you don’t understand it well enough, is kind of the concept.

And I’m really glad that we’re moving in that direction as a society and as scientific and educational institutes. It makes me really happy to see that.

Chris: Now, there are a lot of sites out there where people can get their medical information from, like Invigor Medical, or I mean, millions, let’s be honest. What should people look out for when they’re trying to get the right information about maybe some sort of ailment on the websites, which they look out for that makes it seem like it’s true, compared to just spam?

Leann: Right. Two big things. One, what is the experience and the education of the person writing it and two what is, do they have any conflicts of interest? One thing that you may know, yes, I do write lots of articles for Invigor Medical, but I am not an employee of Invigor Medical and have never been an employee of Invigor Medical.

So, I do not get any benefit from sales of any products that Invigor Medical sells or anything like that. And that is on purpose. I can write what I think is medically accurate and cite it based on a, you know, the resources and references that are available out there at the time. And then Invigor Medical determines whether they want to post it on their website or not.

So, that way there’s really no conflicts of interest. So if you go to a website and the person who is writing the content is the same person who is selling the content, that’s a red flag to you.

Chris: Okay. That’s what I was going to have you elaborate on the conflict of interest. That makes total sense because they’re just trying to sell it, too.

Derek: Well, a lot of companies will do their own research studies and will intentionally skew it so that it’s, make sure that their product comes out on top and is like, “Oh, look, this can this can provide this effect to you.” But it’s in a very small sample size and is with a lot of things stacked in their favor.

Leann: Well, and that’s another good point for you. Statistics lie.

Derek: Like 83% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

Chris: Did you just make that up?

Derek: Yeah, exactly.

Chris: Before we get into the topic that we want to get into, I wanted to ask one more thing. For anybody listening out there, people that are in the medical field are trying to get into the medical field, and they like writing. What are some steps that they could take to, you know, land a gig like yours where you get to write articles on all these websites?

Leann: Well, first of all, you have to be able to write. So, the only way to get good at anything is to do it. So the first thing you need to do is build a portfolio, write on LinkedIn, write on media, write on your own website, you know, pitch articles. I’m a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.

You pitch to outlets that are out there, and that way you get feedback. You get to find out if your ideas and your pitches are any good or not. You also get feedback based on how much editing your work requires. You know, just somebody go through and rewrite your content or is it just a few words that they change periodically?

So, as you write and, you know, you look at the feedback and you write some more, you get more feedback, then you get better and better at it. And then you can enter the field of medical writing. Another good organization for you is the American Medical Writers Association, which is also something that I’m a member of.

And I definitely would join if you’re in health care and interested in medical writing of any kind, because you’re going to be amazed at the number of different kinds of medical writing. I write continuing medical education that educates physicians and nurses and stuff like that. The style and the writing is completely different than writing about the topics that I write for Invigor medical.

Chris: Okay. That makes sense. Can you elaborate a little bit on, like, the differences? Would it be like you said something about, you know, sixth grade level earlier? Is it just not using the big words?

Leann: Well, and for the website content, that’s what you’re supposed to aim for is a sixth grade level. So, you certainly when you first start writing, it’s important to take your articles and run through the readability tests. Microsoft Word has readability tests. There’s online free ones that you can use and run it through there and see what happens.

You’re going to find, like I always do, your sentences are too long. You use too much passive voice, and you use words that, there are simpler alternatives for. Hemingway Editors is another good software for you. If you’re ever interested in it, it’s got a charge, but it’s like $15 for a download to your desktop and then you keep it.

So I think that you can put it in your articles in Hemingway and Hemingway will, you know, highlight your passive voice, highlight your sentences that are too long, suggest alternative easier words for the words that you’ve used and you learn from that. That’s feedback for you. So that way the next time you can try to write it a little simpler.

Chris: Hemingway. Okay, I’m gonna write that down now. Now we know that you’re a Peloton junkie and you love exercising and stuff, and we wanted to talk about obesity in the United States and weight loss and weight management. And to kick it off, we have this stat that we didn’t make up.

CDC estimates that about 40% of the adults in the U.S. are with obesity. What in your mind, is the biggest problem in the U.S. that is the cause behind obesity? And I know that’s a big question.

Leann: There are many causes. Some of them we can help and some of them were victims. There’s both. And one, I really appreciate the fact that you said people with obesity instead of obese people. I think it’s really important for all of us to recognize that obesity is a chronic disease, no different than high blood pressure and diabetes and any of the other chronic diseases that are out there.

You know, yes, with high blood pressure, there are things that you can do to manage your blood pressure. You can eat less salt, you can eat healthier foods, you can exercise, things like that. But there are also genetic predisposition and things about your individual metabolism that control your blood pressure, that you don’t have a lot of control over.

I liken that to obesity. Yes, there are things that you can do to decrease your body mass index and your body weight. You can exercise, you can get up through the day, you can move your body in order to burn more calories. You can choose a diet that’s healthier, that has better quality foods, more whole foods, as opposed to the highly processed foods that we’re all used to.

But there’s also things that you can’t control. You do have a genetic predisposition. You do have a metabolism that works based on the hormones that you happen to have and the levels of hormones that you happen to have. And there’s only so much you can do as far as that. So, I try to walk the line between, yes, there’s lots of things we can do to make our lives and health better.

But on the other hand, it’s not the same road for all of us. Some of us have a little bit tougher time losing weight and exercising and adopting that kind of lifestyle than others.

Derek: Definitely. You know, that kind of leads me to another question, because, you know, we’re looking at this 40% of the adults in the United States have obesity or people with obesity. And, I guess kind of brings up the question is like, why do we need to worry about this? You know, what effect does having excess amounts of fat on the body or being overweight or having, you know, in that condition, what impact does that have on the body?

Leann: Here’s another surprising statistic for you. There are 200 identified comorbid diseases associated with obesity.

Chris: Wow.

Leann: So comorbid disease is any disease that occurs at the same time that is somewhat related to another disease. So, for example, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease are all comorbid diseases because high blood pressure increases your risk of heart disease, high cholesterol increases your risk of heart disease, obesity increases your risk of 200 diseases.

So, I mean, that’s a huge, big deal. It is. And it’s not just body weight. Derek, I really appreciate the fact that you mentioned fat, because body fat is the problem. Not body weight. You know, and that’s one of the arguments. One question I commonly get asked is what do I feel about BMI? And BMI as measurements for tracking your progress?

Because that’s what doctors always use as a BMI in the office. Not so good, right? Because those of you who lift weights, you know, or peloton junkies like me, you’re going to have more muscle mass than a comparable somebody at the same age as you and less body fat, but you’re going to have the same BMI. So it’s going to appear that your overall growth, but you’re actually improving your health and doing really well.

A better measurement is waist circumference, waist hip ratio. You know, those kind of measurements are much better because they’re more geared towards body fat as opposed to just weight.

Derek: Definitely. That being said, BMI, I think that it is a very helpful tool for doctor’s offices because, it’s basically, it’s completely free. You just have to have a calculator that’s able to essentially calculate, okay, what’s your height, what your weight. And it runs the ratio and it gives you a good benchmark. But as far as like ways to make it more accurate and more applicable to you specifically, I think you touched into one of, like, muscle mass.

I’d be curious to hear what your thoughts are on, like, calipers or, like, or what? Like the best way to track this, whether it’s measurements of just, like, literally measuring yourself with a measuring tape or using calipers?

Leann: Well, for all of those, the most important thing is the trend, not the measurement. So if you want to take pictures of yourself, you know, do it once a month and watch the trend. Wear the same clothes, take it at the same time of day, use the same angle, which is difficult, in order to kind of get an image of the same thing and see what differences you can see. That works well.

Body mass index, it’s fine to track your trend, you know, see what happens but be aware that, and the scale also, a lot of people get very discouraged when they start working out and they gain weight and their body mass index increases and they’re just like, “Why is this happening?” I think it’s one of the biggest reasons that the January gym trend falls apart and everybody runs to the gym on the 1st of January eager to go.

I’ll tell you, all the treadmills are all full, which is really irritating. But they’re all there. And then the third week of January, fourth week of January, all of a sudden there’s openings now, the treadmills are available.

Derek: The parking lot is empty.

Leann: A lot of these people have stepped on the scale day after day after day. And have seen no improvement. And in many cases, they gain weight, you know, but that’s because your body is complex.

It’s not just one of those things where you can, you know, you’ve probably heard of the calorie in, calorie out. You know, 3500 calories in a pound. If I burn 3500 calories, I’m going to lose a pound. Right? Exact. That’s 500 calories per day. Go to the Y or any other gym or wherever you exercise, burn 500 calories.

By Sunday, the end of the week, you’ll have lost a pound. It’s not going to work because there are so many things that filter into your body weight that it’s not just that. Calipers will measure your subcutaneous fat, which works really well as far as tracking that portion of your body fat. It doesn’t do a whole lot for visceral fat, which, you know, at your age group is probably not as big of a concern.

But for the over 50 crowd, visceral fat is a much bigger concern than subcutaneous fat. Visceral fat, it’s that fat that’s in the abdomen, that’s around the body organs that secretes different kinds and other chemicals that increase your weight, your risk for heart disease and high blood pressure and diabetes and things. So, for that reason, that’s like waist circumference is something I tend to suggest a little bit more for the average person as opposed to calipers.

Derek: Now, how would someone go about doing these? Like, do you just get a tape measure and just measure it every single day? Is it around the belly that’s the best?

Leann: First thing in the morning. You want to try to be consistent so that you do it the same time every day, you know, halfway between the bottom of your rib cage and your iliac crest, which is the, you know, where your hip is. If you put your hands on your hips, you’re putting your hands on your iliac crest measure halfway in between there.

You want to do it firmly, but not tight. And then just write down your measurements and you can measure halfway down your thigh, halfway up your arm. 

You know any other measurements that you’d want. Some people track their neck measurements because that’s another place that you can kind of get a sense of when you’re losing body fat and just do it once a week, once every couple of weeks and watch for trends.

The only device that I recommend people use on a daily basis if they’re going to really track, is a scale, only because a scale fluctuates so much. You know, there’s so many things like that for triangulate the night before, which can also have you weighing a couple of pounds more in the morning and then you think, well, nothing’s happened and you haven’t made any progress.

But using a scale on a daily basis kind of gives you a better idea than just take the average for the measurements and write that one down on Saturday or Sunday and then track that instead.

Derek: What effect does sleep have on weight loss?

Leann: A lot. And you know, I’ve made a big point of talking about what we have research behind and what we don’t have research behind sleep. There’s been a ton of research behind. You need 7 to 9 hours of sleep, restful sleep every night. And I don’t know that they figured out how many chronic diseases are, like, they have the 200 associated with obesity.

I don’t know if they’ve added up yet. How many are associated with poor sleep habits, insomnia, lack of sleep. But I would imagine the number approaches that same number.

Chris: I bet. I mean, we’re all thrown into this society to work, work, work. You know, get your lunch over quick and go back to work. You’ll get enough sleep when you’re dead, you know? So to hear the opposite of what we’ve always been programed to do in this world, to get 7 to 9 hours sleep is just nice to hear coming from professionals, you know, because a lot of the times, like, we’ve heard it just, you know, stay up late, burn the candle on both ends, get everything done, do your work, do that.

You know, it’s always do, do, do never me, me, me, usually, when it comes down to it.

Leann: Well, a lot of people, you know, their culture has told them that sleeping is selfish. Know that that’s not something that you, you know, that you do, but you don’t really need to. And it’s taking away from top family time, cleaning time, work time, etc., etc.. But it’s not, you know, if you want to be around your family loved ones again for a longer period of time, you have got to prioritize your sleep.

Chris: How do you feel about napping?

Leann: It’s never worked for me. I don’t know if it would work for other people, but…

Derek: I love naps.

Chris: It never works for me either, actually.

Leann: I know. And, you know, in some cultures, a 30-minute nap after lunch increases productivity and it is part of their day and they swear by it as far as beneficial. I’m not sure how I could manage it but…

Derek: As far as the mechanism of why sleep would help with weight loss. I’m just taking a guess here and maybe you can help me out with this. Does it have anything to do with the growth hormone that gets released as you’re sleeping? Does that have an impact on it?

Leann: Oh, I think it does have an impact. Yes. Yeah, I think that there’s a lot of hormonal changes that occur, you know. And if you think about it, how long has it been since we just found out that the brain has its own, you know, for lack of a better description, vacuum cleaner that goes through the brain at night and gets rid of waste and chemicals and stuff. That’s only been three or four years ago.

It’s been found that we always kind of thought that sleep was not a passive process, that it was an active process. Things are actively going on inside your brain, in your body, to prepare for the next day. I think reform is certainly part of that, but I don’t think it’s the only thing. I think there’s lots of things that are occurring.

Derek: That we just don’t know about because sleep, to my understanding, sleep is just a very complicated and very kind of unknown thing.

Leann: As we’ve, we’re trying to move away from the fact that sleep is just your brain turns off. You know, and it’s so much more than that.

Chris: When it comes to losing weight or decreasing obesity. Do you think diet or exercise is more important?

Leann: Well, it’s not the answer I wish it was. It’s diet. And diet is the more important than exercise. I would love to exercise my way out of obesity. That would be great because I feel like you have a lot more control over exercise than you do diet. You know, just because we’re at the mercy of some of these foods that we’re eating that we aren’t quite sure what we’re eating.

And, you know, other than if you go to the grocery store and you stay completely with Whole Foods, which would be wonderful if you could, but it’s not practical for a lot of people. If you could stay in that whole food section alone, eat fruits and vegetables, make your own breads, don’t don’t eat the store breads. Make sure you get lean cuts of meat that are from farms, not from, you know, you don’t have to worry about hormones and things like that.

Then you would have full control over your diet, right? But how many of us can actually manage that?

Chris: I met him. This one guy.

Leann: Yeah. Good.

Derek: There’s a handful of them out there, but, yeah, it’s very difficult.

Leann: It is very difficult. So, exercise is something you have more control over and you definitely can make a lot of gains with exercise. So, I usually tell people, do your best with your diet and then exercise, you know, and, you know, people ask me as far as exercise, what are you supposed to do? Well, the guidelines are to do moderate to vigorous exercise.

You heard this 150 minutes a week, vigorous exercise for 75 minutes a week. Those are the guidelines that have been out there. Can most people manage that? No, they can’t. And the reason: it’s not fun, you know, it takes it takes a long time to make running part of your daily routine to the point where you actually like it and you want to do it every day, which is, it’s, I can tell you it’s great when you’ve gotten to that point, because I do run every day and I do enjoy it every day.

But there’s a lot of people who don’t, and it takes a long time to get to that point. What is more important is the things that you do when you’re not exercising. So that’s where you have more control. This is that non-exercise activity thermogenesis, which is referred to as meat. You know, when did I notice problems as far as body fat and worrying about it? When I first started writing because what would I do all day?

I sat at my desk all day long. How many calories do you burn sitting at your desk all day? About 50 to 100 per hour. Not very much. So you’re not going to do very well there. It’s hard to write standing up on a treadmill, doing jumping jacks, lifting weights, you know, those kind of things.

So, it’s one of those things where, once again, you have to do the best you can. So, I recommend to people, you know, get up as much as you can. Buy one of the desks that I have, I have a standing desk that automatically inclines because I write all day. But do what you can there. I do have an under desk treadmill. It works.

Derek: That’s great. I was going to say the group of guys that I sit with at, here at Invigor Medical, we make a point that every morning and every afternoon we go for walkies.

We call them walkies. And it’s, and we just go out. We have a little loop that we do every day and we try to do it in the afternoon when we try to catch a sunset, get some of the benefits of getting the light in the eyes. And it’s great because it really helps us break up the day and get going and get some fresh air.

And I’ve noticed it’s helped with productivity, but it also has helped me just like stay active. And yeah, I can’t recommend that enough, like, it’s very simple to do and can definitely have major impacts, not just on your weight, but like in a lot of other areas as well.

Leann: Absolutely.

Chris: I agree. I do that as much as I can, unless it’s nine degrees outside and then I decide to just walk and pace around my office. The one question that I have about weight loss, you said, of course, diet’s the most important, but exercise, we have more control over. Is the timing of your meals, when you’re trying to lose weight, a big deal when it comes down to diet?

Leann: That’s controversial. You know, there’s been a recent meta analysis that came out as far as restricted times for eating, intermittent fasting, controlling your diet, things like that, and the evidence looks supporting for it. So, because there was another meta analysis that was out two years ago that basically said, “No, it doesn’t make any difference at all.”

But there’s newer evidence that possibly it can. They suggest that it’s more helpful for men than it is for women. I don’t know why. Yeah, I don’t know what the reason was behind that, but they said that their, the researchers said that it may be more beneficial for men than for women. I tried to think there were two forms that they said was most helpful.

I think, one was every other day where you eat more than your 100% calorie one day, and then the next day you’re at 25% or something to that effect. I don’t know a whole lot about it. I know it’s got some potential to work, but then once again, it’s going to be variable for each person.

Derek: We have all these things, we have meals and really we’re thinking about fat loss. What are the actual mechanisms that drive fat loss? Like how, because, you know, we know that if you eat less, you lose fat. But like how does that actually work?

Leann: There’s basically two ways that you can drive fat loss. You can either make it easier for fat to get out of fat cells and eat into your bloodstream where it can be burned or you can increase thermogenesis, so you can increase the caloric demand on your fat cells, which makes them break down fat more.

So, by exercising, what you’re doing, you’re, of course, increasing caloric demand. You’re burning more energy, you’re increasing heat, you’re stimulating the sympathetic nervous system in order to tell fat cells there’s a big, you know, a bigger demand here. There are also some ideas as far as different supplements, vitamins, you know, things that will improve your body cells’ ability to release fat into the circulatory system, into your bloodstream, where it can be used for energy.

One of the most interesting things I’ve seen on fat burning, I don’t know if you guys have heard of this, was the soleus pushup, which is fairly recent. Some researchers have developed how they work. They were testing people in their lab and found that the soleus muscle is in your calf. It’s the big muscle. You’ve got the gastrocnemius, which is the muscle that you see, the one that gives you kind of c-shaped to your calf muscle.

And then the soleus is the one underneath of it, and it’s the one you use for running and a lot of things like that. But it doesn’t have a lot of glycogen storage in the soleus muscle. And because of that, it demands fat for calories when you’re using it. And so they were researching it, saying, what if you did have to sit all day?

Can you do anything to stimulate this soleus muscle to burn more calories and increase your metabolic rate past that 50 to 100 that you get just for being a blob sitting on a chair and they actually found that you could. And so I find that really fascinating because I think it has, you know, little things like that. I call them nudges.

We all have little nudges that we can do that we can improve our overall health. We can improve our ability to lose weight if we need to. We can improve our cardiovascular fitness. All of those and none of them individually is going to make a huge difference. You know, I think, I guarantee you, you’re not going to lose 50 pounds sitting in your chair doing the soleus pushups.

Chris: I’m doing it right now.

Leann: That’s good, because that’s one little nudge through the day and your walk twice a day and getting the light. That’s another nudge, you know, going in and choosing one food over another is, and, it’s, all these little things that are in the back of your mind and you just tell yourself, “Well, I can do this one thing.” You know? And then by the time you keep doing those one things, your life gradually begins to change and you make different choices.

And those choices feel good.

Chris: That’s kind of what we’ve said here a few times on the podcast is, is just, you know, change one thing or alter one thing a little bit. Get used to doing that every so often. And then start something else. And by the time you get three or four or five of those things down, like you just said, you’re mentally changing the way you think and you’re going to make better decisions.

Derek: So, in that regard, we’re talking about a lot of different things: diet, exercise. Something that I just thought of is hunger obviously plays a huge role in weight loss and in trying to get to a healthy weight. What are some of the mechanisms that drive hunger and how can people, because I know that this is something that’s different on a genetic level for different people.

Different people experience hunger at different levels. And so, you know, it’s really easy to pass judgement on someone, but they might actually biologically be hardwired to experience greater levels of hunger than you are. So what can people do that have these really bad hunger pangs? What can they do to handle those?

Leann: For me, the most effective I have found was to eat protein. I find that for me, protein, I mean I eat more eggs than I probably should because I find that, you know, I don’t get hungry for a much longer period of time eating that kind of protein and protein is one thing. It’s harder to digest. It takes longer to digest, and it provides a more stable blood sugar than obviously carbohydrates.

I should, especially the simple sugars I like. So it’s those ups and downs in your blood sugar that really drive hunger. And in addition to the hormones, there’s a complicated list of hormones that control appetite and cravings and tell your brain that you want to eat, and especially that you want to eat certain foods. And the reason they’re there is because evolutionarily over the history of humankind, what’s been the goal?

To survive, right? To get enough calories, to continue to survive. And so your body is geared to hold on to nutrients and hold on to body fat in order to protect your life. There’s been some really interesting studies. I remember one from when I was teaching genetics where people who lived through the famine, the Irish potato famine, if it was the, I got to remember which one, whether it was the grandfather or the, I think it was, if the grandfather lived through the Irish potato famine, his grandsons statistically were much more likely to be obese than the general population.

Something changed between the grandfather’s metabolism and the changes in DNA that occurred as a result of lack of food and hunger that have passed on to their sons and then on to their grandsons and then their grandsons hold on to those calories as though they were in the potato famine. But then they had access to plenty of food and so on.

You know what’s going to happen then.

Derek: And that basically comes down to epigenetics, right?

Leann: It does. And epigenetics, you know, everybody thinks of genetics, which is basically your DNA sequence. Those are the base pairs of their A’s, T’s, C’s and G’s that you might have learned at some point. And those are all inherited and they’re put together to have genes. And for a long time that’s what we thought controlled everything. You carry this gene or you carry that gene.

But now there’s methyl groups that are put on top of these genes that turn them on and off. And these methyl groups respond to the environment. So they, depending on the environment that you’re in. And that’s why there’s so much research right now as far as eating in diet, because what’s happening with the chemicals and the hormones and things like that that we’re putting in our food.

What is that doing to not only our epigenetics but our children’s and our grandchildren’s epigenetics?

Derek: Yeah, for anybody that’s wondering the difference between epigenetics and genetics, one way that I’ve heard it and Leann, I would love to get your take on this as well. One way that I’ve heard recently is that genetics is like a CD, a compact disc. I don’t know. I know that we don’t really use those anymore, but it’s essentially like a CD, a compact that has had all these laser engraved divots in it.

And the epigenetics is a thing that reads it. Is that correct?

Leann: Right. Because if you put a methyl group on top of a gene, you can turn it off. And so the reader is going to skip over that section. So whether you carry the gene that would increase your muscle mass or not. Having those muscle groups sitting on top of it. And it’s not just methyl groups.

That’s just the simplest one I can think of, but on top of it will determine whether it’s turned on or not. So if you think about it, not only is it your genetic sequence, but it’s your epigenetic sequence. Plus it’s the environment you’re living in and that your parents lived in. And now we know that your grandparents lived in.

That all helps determine as far as how your body’s going to process calories.

Chris: I think my grandfather lived through the potato famine.

You touched on this a little bit. Intermittent fasting. It’s extremely trendy. It’s online everywhere. It pops up in my feed all the time. What’s your take on this and what’s your opinion on intermittent fasting?

Leann: Well, it’s certainly not going to hurt, right? Because if I tell myself I can only eat during an eight hour window through the day and I’m not going to eat any calories any other time and I pay attention to hunger, that’s another important thing. You know, you talked about what kind of things are making us as a society more likely to have obesity.

One of the things is our distracted eating. So, you’re at least compressing your distracted eating time period down to 8 hours or whatever it is your beating window is going to be. So, you’re likely to eat less calories. Now, if you’re going to eat twice as many calories in that 8 hours as you would have in a day, it’s not likely to work.

And so that’s the question. What is it about intermittent fasting that’s making a difference? Some theorize it has to do with the circadian rhythm and the hormones that are released throughout the circadian rhythm and providing nutrients at certain periods or windows will make a difference. And some people say that that’s not it at all.

That what’s actually making a difference is the amount of time that you’re allowing yourself to eat. You know that you’re limiting it to a certain period of time. So that’s a better way to control your calories.

Derek: Yeah, you know, I’m a big fan of intermittent fasting and the times that I’ve used it. I, there’s a couple of things that I really like about it. One, it doesn’t cost anything to, to not to eat anything. And two, when you look at a lot of the different popular diets that are around, it’s very prescriptive.

You have to go out and there’s a lot of rules and it’s like, okay, these are in and these are out and you can eat this, but you can’t eat those. And it’s really complicated. Fasting is incredibly simple because it’s literally just like, don’t eat. Yeah, exactly. And, you, the other thing that I’ve really noticed from it is that you get a huge, once you get past those couple of first couple of days where you’re really hungry, once you get past that, I’ve noticed a huge level of increased focus and being able to like, stay to task and not have to worry about going and eating and another big thing that I noticed as well is when you eat lunch, when I would eat lunch, I would like crash hard after eating lunch. After I started doing intermittent fasting, my energy levels went through the roof and it just felt amazing.

Chris: How long would you fast for? What was your rhythm?

Derek: So, I initially started with just skipping breakfast. I think that’s pretty common for people that are just trying to start it out. I eventually got to the point where I would do one meal a day where essentially I’m only eating dinner and I’m making sure that the, and this is a benefit for me is I feel like eating one meal a day, I’m able to pull all the resources would have put into breakfast and lunch to buy organic foods by, you know, because generally whole foods are a little bit more expensive.

And so I go out and I am able to utilize the money I would have spent on those meals and really funnel it into getting high quality ingredients for my dinners so that the food that I’m putting into my body are giving me the most nutrients and get the most bang for my buck. So, it’s and then eventually at one point, just to just to see what I could do, I actually did do an extended fast.

And this is actually an important disclaimer for our entire podcast. None of this is medical advice, right? And we’re not prescribing anything. Go and talk to your doctor before you do anything like this. But at one point in time, I did an extended fast for five days, so I didn’t eat anything for five days. I did drink a little bit of bone broth.

I made sure that I had enough salt and other minerals to keep me going. But after that, those five days at the end of that, I actually didn’t really experience any hunger and I just had a very high level of focus. So, a lot of interesting things there. And I don’t know, we’ve got Leann here, who’s a medical expert and probably has some things to say about that.

But I’d be curious to hear what your thoughts are on extended fast. I’ve heard that they can help with what’s called autophagy and being able to clear things out of your system and reduce risk to cancer. And there’s a lot of those I’d be curious here what your thoughts are.

Leann: Well, the problem is, there hasn’t been any real good studies on it, you know, because to come up with a population that is healthy enough to recommend that and to try it so that you can test to see what’s happening and then to follow them long enough to see what ends up happening as far as cancer risk and blood pressure risk and stuff like that would be an extremely hard study to design.

So, you know, I would have a hard time recommending a fast for that long for anybody because, you know, as far as medical training, it’s not a good idea. But with that said, do I know it doesn’t work? No, because there is no research out there that I know of at this point that points to the benefits or drawbacks from it.

Derek: One thing here at the Invigor Medical podcast we really like to hit on are the five pillars of health, right? Which we’ve really, really emphasized diet. We’ve talked about exercise, but specifically with the blue zone or with the last one, social interaction, the first thing that came to my mind were the blue zone diets, right? And the people that live in these blue zones. I’ve heard that, like, especially in Europe as well, when people eat, they make a whole ordeal of it that they go out and they spend time with their friends and they really enjoy that.

What impact do you think social interactions actually have on weight loss and, or, even, like, on meals and calorie consumption? What factors does that play?

Leann: Well, I think it goes back to that distractedness. You know, how many times have you sat down and eaten a hamburger and french fries in front of a TV show and the plate is empty and you had no idea what happened to it? You know? It happens to all of us. So sitting down and making it a point of having a long meal with people and talking and spending time with it gives your stomach time to recognize whether it’s full or not.

Gives time for hormones to go back to your brain and say whether it’s full or not. Also, provide some social pressure on what you’re eating. I mean, I don’t know about you, but are you likely to order that hamburger and french fries when you’re in a crowd with other people or when you’re by yourself?

Derek: Unfortunately, yes. Unfortunately I am.

Leann: But there are some people that maybe do what they should be doing as opposed to what they do there. So, I mean, there’s a lot of things there but those areas in the world are the ones where, you know, families and healthy diets and fruits and vegetables and good sources of protein are all important. And then also sitting down, talking to people, extending the meal so that it takes long enough that you actually can tell when you’re hungry or full.

And then also that interaction may make a difference as far as peer pressure on whether you should eat what you eat.

Chris: Or drink, let’s be honest.

Derek: Yeah, I mean, honestly, one of the podcasts and I think we referenced this recently and I’m trying to remember what organization is, and I looked it up and now I’m spacing it, but there is a registry for people that are trying to lose weight. And one of the things that they talk about is that one of the best ways to lose weight is just to do small incremental changes.

Just like we’ve been saying, it’s a constellation and identifying small things that you can cut out of your life that is sustainable for you. So, like, for some people that might be alcohol. Which the effect that alcohol has on consumption of, a lot of them are high in carbs, but then also the impact it has on the liver and being able to metabolize those carbs.

And a lot of it gets sent over to fat, which is part of the beer belly. Is this a correct assumption to make?

Leann: Oh, absolutely. And the only thing I would take one step further in addition to one step at a time, tie the things that you don’t want to do to the things that you enjoy doing. You know, when I started running on the treadmill, I’ll be the first one to tell you it’s the most boring thing in the world, right?

Who wants to spend an hour there? But, if you decide that you can watch, you would only be able to listen to the podcasts that you want to listen to. Or you only are allowed to do the peloton classes you want to do, or you’re only allowed to watch the movies you want to watch when you’re on the treadmill.

Then it becomes a lot more tolerable and, you know, just little things like that. So, if you wanted to make a change tomorrow as far as your health and think about something that wouldn’t counteract that, certainly you don’t want to reward yourself with french fries for eating a healthier meat during…

French fries, that’s my downfall, french fries.

Derek: French fries are so good.

Chris: I know exactly what you’re talking about. By doing something you like along with something like the exercise because I might treadmills outside in. I have the TV outside. Or I bring my iPad out and I’ll have that now. I just recently drove from California to Washington State and it’s about an 18 hour drive. And I can tell you that it didn’t feel like a whole lot because I was listening to those podcasts that I really enjoy and I was by myself.

I wasn’t with anyone else. So, I think that if you’re struggling with obesity, that might be a good start. You know, if you like watching cartoons or if you’re a YouTube guy, try that. Like you said, we say this all the time. Try one thing. And I think that’s really a good one to start with, honestly, because I did it naturally.

So, I’m sure that most people, a lot of people are doing it that way. So, I thank you for bringing that up, honestly.

Leann: And if you get feedback from numbers, do that too. I don’t know if you guys are that kind, but I am. I do get feedback from numbers. I can’t tell you the last time, that I would have, I mean, I would pace the room, pace, if necessary to make sure that I had my 10,000 steps before midnight hit, you know, because it’s become such a habit that that’s, so, if you’re somebody who’s like that, that you really can can be driven by numbers and by goals and things like that, then you, there’s so many technologies out there that you can use that can provide you feedback and give you some information.

Derek: When it gives you a sense of accomplishment, right? So this morning, this is something that, like, going into the gym, I’m like, and I say this to myself a lot. I go into the gym and I’m like, “I am going to freaking hate this.” But I say, “No, I’m going to put on my favorite podcast and get going.”

And this morning actually was one of those days. I did the stair climber for 60 minutes with a 40 pound pack on my back and at the end of it, my shirt was a rag of sweat. And, but, like, at the very end, I was able to look at the time and say, “I did that.” And, like, that, and really relish in the fact of, like, pushing myself to the point where, like, I feel good about this.

And I think that being able to have that feeling of, like, I accomplished this and really relishing, I don’t know whether it’s dopamine or serotonin or whatever it is, but like that feeling of, like, I did, it is really what you’re going for.

Leann: And unfortunately, french fries can do the same thing.

Derek: Yeah, unfortunately. Yeah, exactly.

Leann: You know, you talked about all of these factors that you have to deal with and things like that. You know, there’s foods that induce cravings and that give that same dopamine burst as you are stair climbing with your weight. Now, one is beneficial to your health and the other one is not. But your brain can’t tell the difference.

Chris: It just wants it. Wants it.

Now we’ve got a few more questions for you. We know that when you age, obviously it’s harder to lose weight. You struggle with things. Everybody’s different. We’ve talked about that. But there are some things out there that can kick start or help you with weight loss and stuff like that. There’s supplements and medications. Which ones would you suggest if somebody was having a hard time to try to kickstart their weight loss journey?

Leann: That’s a hard question because one of the important things as far as medicine and the thing with Invigor Medical also, is personalized. What’s going to work for one person is not going to work for someone else. And, so, therefore I can’t make a general recommendation.

Chris: Can you elaborate on some of the supplements that are out there that people can potentially use?

Leann: Yeah. Some of them are in the nudge category and some of them are in the medication category and nudges are going to be things like Vitamin B, Vitamin B12 and B-complex and the, you know, the lipotropics, theanine, and also polycholine, all of those. What are they? They’re Greece for the metabolic mechanisms that you have inside your body.

Their job is to basically try to optimize it.

Chris: I like that.

Leann: If you’re already optimized or your body’s already running pretty efficiently, you’re not going to see any difference. But if not, you may see a big difference. You know, either, vitamin D is a good one because vitamin D deficiency is very, very common. You know, you mentioned going for your walk in the evening where you’re not going to get any vitamin D at this point because if you’re North of, I think it’s the 57th parallel, the one that cuts halfway across the United States.

We get enough UV light to get adequate vitamin D for all of four months of the year. The rest of the year, we’re pretty much out of luck. And, so, that’s why vitamin D deficiency is so common.

Chris: And let’s be honest, a lot of us work in rooms with fluorescent lights and fake lighting, and don’t get out that much.

Derek: Well, one of the stats that we pulled out of the survey that we did on our site, 80% of people say that they did not get hardly any sunlight at all. And so, yeah. Very common.

Leann: And there’s populations that have even more trouble with that because, you know, the ones that prefer a vegan diet to, you know, a more carnivorous diet is a better word. You know, they’re going to have more problems with that. People with darker pigmented skin are going to have more problems with it because it’s more difficult for you to get through.

Older people may have more problems with it. Unfortunately, people with obesity are more likely to be vitamin D deficient. And the reason is vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin. And because it’s a fat soluble vitamin, if you have more body fat, you’re going to have less vitamin D available for your body to use and therefore you’re going to be deficient.

So, there’s so many factors that make a difference, but I consider them kind of all in the nudge category just because it’s going to work for some people, it’s going to not work so much for others. It’s not to make you lose 50 pounds all by itself. You know, that vitamin D pill is not going to give you 50 pounds of weight loss.

But could vitamin D deficiency be preventing you from getting the maximum benefits you can from your diet and exercise? Absolutely.

Derek: Now, a question with that. And this is a mechanism that I’m actually really curious about that I have no idea. When you’re saying that the vitamin D gets stored in the fat, when people start going on these weight loss journeys and they start losing fat, does that vitamin D get rereleased back into the bloodstream?

Leann: I’m sure that it does. I don’t know that anybody’s actually done any studies to look at that. All they know is they have tracked as far as body weight and vitamin D levels in order to see. But I’m sure that it would, that it would gradually increase in your vitamin D levels and may return back to normal. But then you’ve also got your dietary influences and your UV light exposure that’s going to make a difference, too.

Derek: So that might be part of the reason why people feel so good when they’re losing weight, is that these nutrients that you might be deficient in are probably actually, and obviously there’s no research on this. And so I’m just speculating. But like I would speculate that they yeah, if people are losing weight and there’s all this vitamin D stored in there, then they’re probably feeling really good because they’re getting the vitamin D that they need.

Leann: Well, and the other reason they’re feeling good is remember how you felt carrying that 40 pound pack around?

Derek: Oh, yeah. Yeah, it sucks.

Leann: It’s because you don’t have to carry that 40 pounds around anymore.

Derek: Every time I take it off, it’s like, ah, thank you.

Leann: Right. And we don’t want to stop with weight loss. We don’t notice that we no longer are carrying that 5 pounds around or that 10 pounds around anymore because it’s so gradual. But it does make a difference. All of a sudden you have more energy, there’s less wear and tear on your joints, you’re able to sleep better. You know, there’s all these other benefits of weight loss, besides the 200 diseases.

Derek: Right, that we talked about in the beginning.

Leann: Obesity increases your risk of…

Chris: Now, without going to a doctor, let’s say somebody’s listening to this podcast, where would be a good place for them to start. Would it be a multivitamin and do you suggest maybe try a certain dosage of vitamin D or B12 or something to get them started? Where do you think people should start at?

Leann: Well, I think, you know, certain vitamins that we are pretty sure that most people are a little bit low on like vitamin D, I think as long as you stay within the normal accepted ranges and you can, you know, all the articles on our website have normal ranges, you can also go to the RDA and look there as far as the recommended daily allowance for it and how much of a supplement you should take.

As long as you stay in those ranges, you should be fine. Now, with that said, there are people who have medical problems that have kidney disease or liver disease that is going to affect how they can metabolize certain vitamins. They may also be on medications that interfere with how they metabolize certain vitamins, especially the fat soluble ones. The A, D, E and K are the ones you worry the most about.

Water soluble ones, you know, we used to, I had a professor in medical school, he said, you know, “Go ahead, supplement with as many water soluble ones as you want. You’re just going to get expensive urine.” You know? So you don’t need to worry as much about those.

Derek: I heard that some water soluble vitamins actually can turn your pee different colors. Which one is that? It like, turns it blue?

Leann: I can’t remember which one it is, but you can get kind of a fluorescent yellow color to it. I don’t remember offhand because you asked me too fast. When we’re done here, you know, all of a sudden, I’ll be like ah! Of course!

Chris: In 20 minutes when you’re on the treadmill.

Leann: No, I’m done with that for today.

Chris: Well, if you remember that, let me know because I want to go get one.

Derek: Oh my gosh! Ah Chris!

To kind of move away then from vitamins, like when do you know or like when can someone figure out, like when they should seek out medical intervention? Because obviously there’s a lot of different medical interventions, whether that’s like a medical diet plan. Obviously, there’s medications that you can take, there’s surgery, and there’s a progression.

But like when does somebody know when they need to start taking or thinking about taking medications for weight loss?

Leann: Well, there are guidelines from the American Endocrinology Association did come up with guidelines as far as that. And that’s where BMI is helpful if you are in the obese range as far as BMI or you have a BMI of 27 and higher, along with a chronic disease that is associated with obesity.

Derek: Some of the chronic diseases associated with obesity, what would some of those be?

Leann: High blood pressure and diabetes or your biggest ones.

Derek: The big ones. Okay.

Leann: So, if you would have one of those conditions and you have a BMI of 27, you qualify also. So, that’s kind of the guidelines that most doctors use is 27 plus a medical condition. I think 30 is the cutoff for obesity. So, 30 and higher without a medical condition means you’re a candidate for it.

Now, most doctors will ask if you’ve tried diet and exercise first, and, you know, that’s the standard, because, you know, they have to show that the risk. The problem with medications is there is no medication out there that doesn’t have risk. And you have to weigh the risks versus benefit ratio. And so, if you’ve got somebody who has a body mass index of 27 or higher and has high blood pressure as a result of carrying that extra body fat, or you have someone with a body fat, a body mass index of 30 or higher, without that, their risk is high because of having obesity, of having that disease, you know.

And, therefore the benefits of using medication is pretty good because the risks are high. If you have someone who’s 27 BMI and has never tried diet and exercise, it might be harder to justify the risk of using medications for someone who hasn’t tried a more benign treatment mechanism. But there’s a huge number of people out there where the risk of medications for obesity, you know, semaglutide is one that comes to mind.

The risk of that particular medication is lower than the risk that they are getting from having obesity as a chronic disease. But I think the other important thing that we need to point out, too, that has become more and more recognized over the last five years or so is that because obesity is a chronic disease, we can’t expect that we’re going to give somebody a prescription for three months of a medication.

They’re going to lose 20 pounds. And there you go. Goodbye. You’re done, because that’s not it. You know, obesity is a chronic disease, just like high blood pressure is a chronic disease. It needs long term management. And the clinical trials that there’s been, I think, eight clinical trials on semaglutide right now, the main four ones and then some others.

But the average weight loss was 35 pounds, which is a significant benefit. Think about what that’s doing to your heart, your joints, your blood sugar, you know, your blood vessels, everything. So, certainly very good. But what happened when the people stopped taking the semaglutide? They started having a gradual rate of their weight. And that’s why we really need to understand that just like when you get somebody’s blood pressure under control, you don’t just discontinue their blood pressure medicine.

When you get somebody’s body weight under control and you don’t just discontinue their medication.

Derek: So I have two thoughts with that. One is I think I remember seeing a video of someone explaining exactly that same point that you just outlined there. But they’re saying that what they did in the post study is that they kept them on a low dose of semaglutide, not the same maintenance dose that they’re doing, but they put them on a low dose and they were essentially able to maintain that.

And that’s one way to go about it if you’re willing to stay on medication. But really, I think at the heart of all this, using medical intervention is, essentially, we should really just view it as a tool to change behavior. Would you agree with that?

Leann: Well, that’s the ideal. You could do that. That’s perfect. So, if you get somebody to choose a better diet and exercise more while they’re on the semaglutide losing weight and then continue that behavior afterwards, then…

Derek: That’s the ideal.

Leann: That’s even better. Yes.

Derek: Yeah. There’s on a previous podcast I talked about, actually, if you look at the etymology of the word diet in Greek, it actually, what it means is a way of life. It’s not just what you’re eating. It’s actually everything that you’re doing around that, whether that’s exercise, who you’re eating with and you really, I think, the reason why the blue zone diets are as successful as they are is because it’s not just like, “Okay, tell me exactly what I need to eat.”

It’s like this is the way that I’m living my life. And if you live your life in a healthy way, then you’re going to be able to flourish and really have a lot of productivity and good things from that.

Leann: And that’s the ideal. But how many people…

Derek: Are able to get that?

Leann: Are able to get to that point what do we do at the end of the three months or whatever that we’re not treating them anymore? Or are we going to try to keep their body weight under control to decrease the risk of long term disease?

Derek: Yeah, now, two other medications that I would really be curious to hear about from you, and I know you’ve written a lot about it. We’ve actually talked about oxytocin before, probably just over chat. But I would love to hear your thoughts on the use of low dose naltrexone for weight loss and oxytocin, especially the oxytocin spray, for weight loss.

Leann: And those are two that don’t have quite as much data behind them as the semaglutide. Semaglutide has a lot of clinical trials because I don’t know if you know the history of that medication, but it was actually a medication for diabetes. And they found that one of the side effects was weight loss. And so they increased the dose of the semaglutide for the clinical trial.

To see what kind of weight loss they could get using that medication. It was very similar for low dose naltrexone and oxytocin. It was kind of a serendipitous discovery. I forget which one is which, but with the oxytocin, I believe it was a group of men that they were looking at that were using the oxytocin nasal spray and found that they consumed fewer calories as a result.

After using that, compared to groups that weren’t using oxytocin nasal spray. And the question was, why were they consuming fewer calories? Oxytocin is a hormone that, you know, is what we call the love hormone or the togetherness hormone or the, you know, it’s the hormone that secreted in a woman’s brain when during childbirth and during nursing in order to help with that bonding between the mother and the baby.

It’s secreted in the man’s brain, you know, with interactions with people, other people with their child, you know. So, everybody has oxytocin release. So, the question is, what exactly is that doing that has to do with appetite. And I think it’s going to be a lot more complex than the GLP-1 agonist that we’re seeing. So, it’s going to take some time to sort out what it does and therefore a little hesitant to say that it’s going to achieve the same results that these medications would only because I think it’s going to be one of those things where it’s going to vary by person, that people are going to get great results with it and some won’t.

Naltrexone acts in the brain and they know the mechanism for that a little bit better. It helps with cravings. Honestly, that’s what it’s there for, you know, for people who are french fry addicts, they help resist the french fries. So, that way, you know, you can, you know, have a little bit more control there. So, that you don’t have that.

It’s an “X” in the brain with dopamine. When medication that uses it is a combination of naltrexone and bupropion. And that combination together acts on two areas of the brain in order to control cravings and stimulate weight loss. But they found that low dose naltrexone has much fewer side effects and seems to also decrease cravings and help with weight loss.

Derek: That’s great. Yeah. I was going to say for the oxytocin and this is just speculation and you can correct me if not. And, obviously the data and the research is going to be the final say. But, I would imagine that oxytocin is probably about satisfaction, right? It’s kind of what it is there’s a lot of bonding and being satisfied with relationships.

So I’d imagine that it’s probably working on those same kind of pathways in the brain.

Leann: And that would make sense because if you, back to, you know, probably work for some people and some others don’t, and there’s certain people that eat to satisfy needs that could be satisfied by more appropriate mechanisms then food. Because it’s not really hunger driven, it’s driven by some other need that they’re having.

Derek: The need to enjoy amazingly, crispy, salty fries. In-N-Out, McDonald’s, where’s your go to?

Chris: Not In-N-Out, she’s in Ohio.

Derek: Oh, that’s true. She’s in Ohio.

Chris: White Castle. There you go.

Leann: You guys are aiming low.

Derek: Okay. You have a higher standard for your fries.

Leann: I do. If I’m going to spend the calories on them. And that’s how I think of calories is spending. I spend my calories.

Chris: That’s a good way to look at it.

Leann: I have so many of them to do. I can eat whatever I want to, but if I spend a lot of them on french fries, that leaves much less for other things.

Chris: Are you gonna tell us? Where you want french fries from?

Derek: Oh, I don’t know. Where do you want them from?

Chris: Where are we getting them from?

Leann: No, thanks.

Derek: To quote Prue from the great British Bake Off, “It has to be worth the calories. If it’s not worth the calories, I’m not going to eat it.”

Chris: That’s kind of what we’ve been talking about the whole time.

Leann: Because it doesn’t feel like punishment there, doesn’t it? When we started this podcast with you asked me about diet and exercise and which one was more important. And I told you that the answer is unfortunately, diet, for a reason. And the reason I said it was unfortunate was because you have less control over it. These statements that we’re making now are trying to empower people with control.

If I think of it as spending more calories than I have control, if you’re thinking of it as I’m only going to eat certain foods because it has to be worth it to me. Notice that the shift is not the food in charge. It’s you in charge. Determining the value of that food.

Chris: Accountability. It’s really hard for a lot of people, that’s for sure. If you go to our website invigormedical.com, you can see up there we have a little quiz to take in a lot of these things that we’re talking about. You can go on this quiz and fill out the form and it’ll give you a little bit of feedback on how, if you’re honest, how, you know, things that might be able to help you.

Then again, lots of articles on the website. Liane has wrote, written. Sorry, Leann has written, so check that out. Leann, where can people get a hold of you? Leannposton.com is your website. Are you savvy with Tik Tok? You’re not on Tik Tok?

Leann: No.

Chris: Okay. LinkedIn, leannposton.com. Is there one nugget of information for anybody listening right now that you’d want to give them? What would that be?

Leann: What I would tell anybody who’s listening right now is you are okay just the way you are. You know, we all can work on things. We all can determine what improvements we want to make, but just remain focused on the fact that you are okay the way you are right now.

Chris: Awesome. I love that so much. Thank you for joining the show, Leann. And we will definitely have you back on because you are just a carpet bag full of information. Mary Poppins, the carpet bag. You just pull out lamps. You are just a plethora of information. And we really do appreciate you joining us.

Derek: Our resident expert.

Chris: Very good time. Have a good day, Leann. We’ll talk soon.

Leann: Bye.

Narrator: Thank you for joining the Invigor Medical podcast. For more information on the show, Invigor Medical, or to get a hold of Chris, go to invigormedical.com.

Podcast Guests

Leann Poston
MD, MBA, MEd

Podcast Guests

Chris Donovan
Host
Derek Berkey
Host
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