Body Fat: Where does your body fat live and why?
Liver Fat deposition pattern: Liver roll; a roll of fat underneath the bra-line, cellulite.
NEEDS Decrease liver-loaders: alcohol; trans fats; refined and artificial sugars; synthetic substances, such as pesticides and nonessential medication, like those found in skin products. Increase bitter foods, such as leafy green veges. Those in the Brassica genus are particularly excellent – broccoli sprouts rock! Start the day with lemon juice in warm water. No processed foods – this results in lower levels of sugars, inflammatory fats and artificial substances, such as preservatives. Resolve any digestion problems, such as diarrhoea, constipation, bloating, irritable bowel syndrome-like symptoms. Add to your diet bitter herbs that support bile production and liver detoxification pathways, such as: globe artichoke; St Mary’s thistle; turmeric.
Adrenals Fat deposition pattern: Thickening of torso to protect vital organs as the body perceives that the food supply is in danger – the tummy and ‘back verandah’ .
NEEDS Decrease caffeine consumption. Explore your perception of pressure and urgency, and save it for when you really need it – not your everyday life. Live life in touch with how privileged it is that all of your basic needs are met, whereas for too many people in the world, this is not the case. Spend more time diaphragmatically breathing to activate the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS); nothing lowers stress hormones faster than long, slow breaths. Remember the serenity prayer: “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference.” Ensure your diet addresses adrenal support or includes calming nutrients and herbs, depending on the stage of stress. These nutrients and herbs might include: magnesium; vitamin C; B vitamins; withania; skullcap; rhodiola; Siberian ginseng; licorice; rehmannia.
Insulin Fat deposition pattern: Starts at belly, then continues all over if blood glucose and insulin levels are not corrected/ managed.
NEEDS Adopt a low-carbohydrate (sugars and starches) way of eating; remember many alcoholic drinks contain high levels of sugars. Avoid processed foods. Have small serves of carbs from wholefood sources only, such as sweet potato, pumpkin and brown rice. Eat plenty of water-based veges. Exercise daily – walking, strength training, yoga, restorative practices. Manage stress and support your adrenals, as living in a state where the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is dominant leads to the primary utilisation of glucose as a fuel (as opposed to body fat), requiring more insulin, which needs to be minimised. Some plant medicine along with the aforementioned lifestyle changes can also be useful, such as: bergamot; citrus peel extract; rehmannia.
Estrogen dominance This is often due to liver congestion leading to the recycling of estrogen. Fat deposition pattern: Bottom, hips, thighs; pear shape is enhanced; mostly fat below the waist.
NEEDS Focus on liver solutions. Often stress management and adrenal support are required, as the excessive, relentless output of stress hormones leads to poor progesterone production, which adds to the estrogen dominance. Nutrients and herbal medicines that can be beneficial (and don’t forget those listed in the liver and adrenal section, as well) include: broccoli sprouts; iodine; selenium; vitamin D; plants in the Bupleurum genus; plants in the Schisandra genus.