Ginseng is known as a stimulant to speed up a sluggish metabolism. Ginseng’s greatest quality is that it can help fight fatigue and boost energy as well as mental alertness. When it comes to weight loss-without exercise is important. Without exercise, it’s almost impossible to lose weight in a healthy way. In addition to boosting energy, there is evidence that it can help manage blood sugar, which also affects energy levels as well as appetite.
1 teaspoon of chopped American or Korean ginseng root
8 ounces of fresh water
raw honey and lemon to taste
Roughly chop the root and measure out 1 teaspoon per cup of water. Bring water to a boil and then pour over the ginseng, allowing it to steep for 5-9 minutes. Strain, add honey or lemon if you like, and drink 1-2 times daily.
Green Tea & Ginger
Green tea has long been debated as a weight loss aid. While some studies have turned up nothing, others have identified three main components in green tea that could help manage weight-caffeine, catechins, and theanine. Caffeine is just an overall boost to your system, and speeds up a number of bodily processes, including metabolism related to weight (metabolism refers to any and all biological processes in a living organism needed to sustain life.)
Catechins are considered anti-oxidant flavonoids, and are superior in green tea rather than black tea due to a difference in processing (black tea is fermented.) While the mechanism is yet to be determined, in vitro and in vivo studies have shown that catechins can help lower the absorption of lipids (fats) via the intestinal track. Theanine is an amino acid in green tea that can encourage the release of dopamine, the chemical that makes you “happy” and relaxed. If you tend to eat due to stress, this may be useful. It also counters the caffeine so you don’t get jittery. The ginger added to green tea will help improve digestion and add a little flavor.
Blood sugar has a direct impact on your weight as it affects how hungry and how energetic you are (if you have energy you’re much more likely to exercise) If your blood sugar is balanced you are less likely to have a disproportionally large appetite, and your body will be more apt to use fat rather than storing it.
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 cinnamon stick
8 ounces of fresh water
Put the cinnamon in a mug and cover with 8 ounces of boiling water. Steep for 15 minutes before straining. Drinking 1-2 times a day.
Dandelion and Peppermint
Dandelion and peppermint tea is a fabulous drink that will help keep your liver healthy. The liver is an incredible organ. It detoxify your body, it is also plays a role in many metabolic processes-a lot of which affect weight. The liver is full of cells that break down fats and turn them into usable energy. These cells are also responsible for the flow of bile, which helps breakdown and absorb fats. In the metabolism of carbohydrates, the liver helps keep your blood sugar steady, therefore keeping energy levels up and regulating appetite. The list goes on, but the point is helping your liver helps your weight, as it plays a crucial role in managing fats and their absorption. Peppermint and dandelion both automatically stimulate the production of bile in the liver, helping with digestion and the absorption of nutrients. Mix the two together for a powerful liver protecting tea.
1 teaspoon of dried dandelion leaves
1 teaspoon dried peppermint leaves
8 ounces of boiling water
Lemon to taste
Pour a cup of boiling water over the dandelion and peppermint and steep, covered, for 5-10 minutes. Strain, add lemon to taste if you like, and drink a cup twice daily. You can also make this with fresh dandelion leaves/roots and fresh peppermint, just use a rough handful of the fresh leaves for the amount. If you do use fresh, be absolutely certain that there have been no chemicals applied to them- this is especially important for dandelion. If you use dandelion on a regular basis, I suggest growing your own.
Sage has a calming effect. When under stress, the body releases cortisol, a steroid hormone that is part of the fight-or-flight response. Cortisol can effect blood sugar level and cause energy to be stored more readily as fat. Neuropeptide Y is a neurochemical that is also related to stress. When released, it causes growth of fat tissue (energy is stored easily as fat around the abdomen) as well as an increase in appetite. One way to fight this underlying stress can be to ingest more sage, which has calming effects on both the body and mind. Making a calming sage tea, or even just adding it in dishes you cook, is one way to help combat your stress levels.
A handful of fresh sage OR 2 teaspoons of dried sage
8 ounces of boiling water
Lemon to taste
Pour boiling water over sage and steep for 4-5 minutes. Strain, add lemon to taste if you like, and drink 1-2 times daily.
Water Water Water
Staying hydrated is an important aspect of weight loss. Water flushes the toxins through your system, and also helps curb appetite. Drink water instead of sodas and juices, don’t like water, then spice it up with your favorite fruits or essential oils.
Drink at least 8 cups of fresh water every day or half you body weight in ounces.
Black Pepper and Lemon Juice
This spicy little concoction contains black pepper and lemon juice to create a drink that can help you keep ahead on your weight loss battle. Black pepper contains a naturally occurring chemical compound called piperine, it is responsible for giving it its pungent flavor. Several new studies have shown that piperine can interfere with the genes that control the generation of fat cells, as well as reducing fat levels in the blood stream and enhancing the absorption of nutrients from our foods. Lemon juice can help aid in digestion and give your G.I. track a helping hand when it comes to breaking down foods.
Several dash ground black pepper
Juice of half a lemon
Mix lemon juice with water and sprinkle in black pepper (about 3-4 turns of the pepper grinder.) Drink once daily after a meal.
Flax seed has been known to help with digestive ailments for centuries, and this goes hand in hand with weight loss. Flax seeds are high in fiber, as well as mucilage, which helps lower cholesterol. It has also been proven to lower blood sugar levels. With such a high amount of fiber, flax seeds also act as a natural gentle way to regulate bowel movements and help promote healthy gut bacteria, both which work well to help you manage weight. It is important to eat flaxseed ground, as it tends to pass through the digestive track undigested if eaten whole, thus depriving you of its nutritional benefits.
Enjoy at least 1 tablespoon of ground daily
Don’t deprive yourself ~ eat some Chocolate
Remember deprivation hardly works? When you get the urge for a sweet treat, turn to dark chocolate. It will help curb your craving thanks to its insulin-resistance lowering flavonoids. The healthy fats in dark chocolate can also slow the absorption of sugar into your blood stream, preventing “insulin spikes.” Studies have shown that eating some can help put a stop to cravings for sugar, salt, and fat. However, the chocolate must be 70% cocoa, otherwise it has too much milk or sugar added to be beneficial.
Eat 70% dark chocolate after a meal
Note: Weight isn’t everything. Muscle does weigh more than fat, and being fit and healthy is more important than being skinny. Don’t eat before bed, your metabolism slows down when you go to sleep, so eating at night makes easy to gain weight. Don’t compare yourself to others, we are all built differently. Stay motivated, be happy, sleep at least 7 – 8 hours everyday/night, exercise daily even if it’s just walking, walking is especially good for depression. Be a healthy happy you from the inside out. Mind body connection!