Weight Renegade

Well, I bet you all are wondering what happened to me for last week’s posting.  I managed to catch a bad cold and my head was so stuffed up that I could not string two coherent words together.  You could have been entertained by my drug-induced ramblings, but there is so much of that out here on the internet, it would be nothing new.

This week I would like to continue on the discussion of weight management through this holiday season.  Not only do you have to deal with the very fattening holiday foods being presented every time you turn around, but once you get sick, you cannot even focus on staying on any type of weight management regime.  Two weeks ago we talked about how the Core4 Products can help you to not gain weight.  Using the Core4 products throughout the holidays, you even stand a chance of losing a few pounds.

Today we are going to continue that discussion but move on to what happens when you get either the flu or a bad cold.  Usually with a flu, you have no desire to eat anything, for fear it will come back and haunt you.  The benefit of that is if you get the flu, most likely you do not need to concern yourself about weight management.  It is a task to eat anything appealing.  Generally, the people I have bumped into this year lost weight while suffering the flu.  The thing you have to be careful about though is that once your appetite comes back, you can’t eat everything in sight.  That is when the Core4 products will do you good.  For starters, if you are just recovering from the flu and under a doctor’s care, I would recommend you talk with your doctor before using the Core4 products.  Not because they may do you harm, but you want to be very sure that you will not have any adverse affects with any medication the doctor is prescribing.  I don’t know of any specific drug interactions, but it is best to ask before taking the products. 

What I am sure you can take, is Cheat since it is purely a fiber.  This way, as you slowly begin to regain your appetite, liberally sprinkle Cheat over your food and you will feel full faster, and not absorb about 25% of the calories you just swallowed.  As you start to feel more human and begin to regain your appetite, you are actually now teaching your body to not eat as much when you use Cheat on your food. 

When you have a cold, you may tend to want to munch a WHOLE BUNCH.  I know during this last week, all I could think of was stuffing my face with something that would make me feel better.  I had trouble curbing my munchie cravings, but the really great news is that by using Cheat on all that munchie stuff (excluding soup) you are actually not absorbing 25% of the calories and you are getting that full feeling  faster.  I noticed that more people feel like they gained weight after recovering from a cold.  You may not feel like taking additional pills (Accelerate and Flush) while suffering through your cold, but using Cheat and Lean (for those almost continuous munchie attacks) will get you full faster and slow down the desire to stuff food into your mouth. 

The upshot is, if you get sick, don’t worry about weight, focus on getting better.  If you feel like you want to eat a lot (with a cold) consider using Cheat on all the foods you are consuming to reduce the number of calories absorbed.  This will also fill you up faster and reduce the munchie cravings.  Even if you don’t use any of the Core4 products while you are sick, odds are that you will not gain a significant amount of weight.  Usually colds and flu last 7-10 days, so you won’t have too much opportunity to put on real weight.  Just be sure to start back on the Core4 when you feel like you have re-entered the land of the living.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions on the Core4 Product family or on any of the individual products.

Until next week…


{November 22, 2009}   Weight Management over the Holidays

I know that we were planning to explore other weight loss alternatives, focusing on other weight loss pills and supplements that are available without a prescription, but have decided to put that off for a week or so.

Since Thanksgiving is this week, it is probably best to discuss weight management over the Holidays.  We are not going to discuss weight loss over the Holidays, that would be asking too much of anyone during this Holiday Season.  If you are one of the truly dedicated individuals, you may be lucky enough to lose weight during this time of year, but the majority of us gain weight.

Did you know that the average person gains 7 pounds over the holidays?  That is a lot of weight that is put on in basically a 4-5 week period.  Heck, we have enough problem losing a pound a week, how can we gain an average of 7 pounds in less time?  That just doesn’t seem fair.

Other than the obvious issues of overeating, stress and lack of sleep are also great contributors to weight gain over the holidays.  The more stressed you are, the more your body goes into survival mode, and tends to store everything it absorbs.  The same goes with lack of sleep.  If you are not getting enough healthy sleep, your body is not processing the calories it consumes properly.  

On top of the stress of the holidays, and the lack of sleep either due to the stress or overwork, you are faced with all kinds of specialty food this time of year.  You have potlucks in the office, there are the office parties to attend, there are the various friends that you go to visit.  All of these places offer different foods, and a large portion of those foods are not necessarily the healthiest for you.  This is the time of year where you are constantly faced with home-made cookies from everyone, cakes, pies, special pies, pumpkin, mince meat, you get the picture.  Many of these foods you only see this time of year.

It would be ‘criminal’ to not partake of these foods (assuming that you like them in the first place), but these are the high-calorie, low nutritional value foods that will quickly add weight to your body.   We know that when you go visit people, they want you to eat what they have made.  Instead of risking offending them by stating you are on a diet, we have an alternative plan.

Before you leave your home to either go to a party or dinner event, drink a Lean Shake.  Lean will provide you with a full feeling, and possibly take the edge off of that craving of sweets.  By drinking a Lean shake prior to the event, it will prevent you from arriving at the event feeling like you are starving and wanting to eat everything that is placed in front of you. 

Another suggestion we have is to always have your Cheat with you.  Since Cheat expands in your stomach and prevents you from absorbing 25% of what you have consumed, sprinkle Cheat on whatever you are eating (excluding soups) and enjoy your food.  Another trick is to use (if possible) a smaller plate when going through a buffet line.  That will give you less plate to put food on, and visually it will still look like you are eating a lot of food.  If you want seconds, you can go back, but this way you will also be forced to start with smaller portions of the foods you want to eat.  By sprinkling Cheat on all of that food, you again reduce your caloric intake by 25% AND you will feel full faster. 

The upshot is to enjoy the holidays and not prevent yourself from enjoying the seasonal foods that are available.  Just eat with moderation, use the Core4 products (especially Lean Shakes prior to going out Cheat on all of the foods that you do plan on eating) and with luck you will not gain any additional weight.  If you keep up with an exercise regimen throughout the holiday season, you may even end up losing weight over the next few months.  If that happens, think of how much easier that New Years Resolution of losing weight will be to keep for next year.  Heck, you may have to find another New Years resolution since you are already losing that weight. 

Take care and we will chat again next week…

{November 16, 2009}   Alternative Weight Loss Options

Last week we reviewed the NutriSystem program and compared it to CNI’s Core4 system.  There were pros and cons of each weight loss system, the key is to find the right program for you.  This week we are continuing to look at some other weight loss programs for comparisons. 

Tonight we are going to take a look at Jenny Craig.  Like NutriSystem, Jenny Craig offers menu items prepared specifically to Jenny Craig standards to help you lose weight.  What is different about Jenny Craig, is that they say they train you to eat healthy first by eating their prepared foods, but then you are taught to create your own healthy menu items, so you are not specifically tied into just eating Jenny Craig menu items for eternity.  Looking at the Jenny Craig menu items, I see the same problem as with NutriSystem, the salt content is extremely high.  That will be an issue in all prepared foods since salt is a preservative. 

Jenny Craig program states that they are more than just a diet, they teach you how to make healthy lifestyle changes in order to keep the weight off.   Using their packaged food first is intended to teach you portion control and good eating habits.  Then, once you have learned, you can begin to use their menu ideas to create your own healthy menus. 

Jenny Craig also promotes increase in activity to help you burn off the excess weight.  Because you are also assigned a personal consultant, that person, or buddy, will help to keep you on track for your target weight loss.  They also have the option to go directly to meetings, or to have weekly phone consultations.  These can be good, but I was unable to discover how much the meetings cost, or how much the weekly phone consultations cost.   All of the marketing I found on their site only states that Jenny Craig customers typically spend about a dollar more a day for their food than a typical American spends on food.  There was no specific costs posted, you are directed to talk with a consultant to discuss cost and payment options. 

The benefit of Jenny Craig over NutriSystem is that you are on a version of a support system.  You have a personal consultant that you work with as you strive to lose the weight.  Like NutriSystem, you start off on their menu items, but unlike NutriSystem, you get taught to create your own menus after you have learned healthy portions and healthy foods.  Jenny Craig also stresses excercise, more than NutriSystem, and also stresses teaching a balanced approach to living and a balanced approach with food. 

As you are most likely aware, we were not always taught the best way to eat, or currently have the luxury of time to make a healthy meal every day.  We are all rushing from one place to another, and grabbing something fast to eat between appointments and meetings has become the norm, not the exception.  We have become a society that has forgotten what a proper meal looks like, and we definitely don’t have the personal time to create those healthy meals easily. 

Next week, we will continue our exploration of other weight loss alternatives, focusing on other weight loss pills and supplements that are available without a prescription. 

If you have any questions on our CNI Core4 products or the system, please visit our website or send a private message to shootershakes@aol.com.

Last week we discussed in detail the Cal Nutrisciences (CNI) Core4 family of products for weight loss and weight management.  To briefly review, the CNI Core4 system comprises 4 items to help you lose and then maintain your healthy weight:  Accelerate, Lean, Flush and the flagship product, Cheat.  If you want more detailed information regarding these products, please see last week’s blog or go to www.weightrenegade.com.  The advantage I have found with the Core4 products is that you do not have to modify what you eat, you take these products in conjunction with what you are eating. 

This week I would like to review the NutriSystem plan and compare it with the Core4 system.  I have not personally tried NutriSystem, but did seriously look at it to help me lose weight.  I did not try NutriSystem because I liked what Core4 had to offer.  This is what I found, hopefully it is helpful to those of you who are looking for a weight loss / weight management system.

The NutriSystem program works by having you purchase their foods from them in 28 day increments.  Basically, you eat their foods, and supplement their foods with some recommended foods that can be found in your local grocery store.  The food you order from NutriSystem is delivered directly to your door. 

For people who are extremely busy and live alone, this can be a very good plan.  You don’t have to go to the grocery to purchase various meal items, you don’t have to plan your meals, so you could save some money because you are not purchasing perishable items that you may not eat.  If you are not living alone, this system can be a hinderance since your other family members may not be able to or want to get involved in the diet plan.  Then you may have to make two sets of meals, one for yourself and one for the rest of your family.  Also, this system can limit the times you go out to eat. 

Price wise, if you live alone, this could save you money since you are no longer having to purchase breakfast, lunch and dinner from the store.  It saves you time, you don’t have to go grocery shopping nearly as often.  A 28 day supply of NutriSystem can run from $333.28 + $18.95 shipping (as of November 8, 2009) if you only order monthly and don’t go on automatic shipments, down to $299.95 with free shipping (if you go on automatic shipments).  If you continue to automatically receive food, the discount goes from 10% to 15% after 3 months of continuous orders.

The problem I personally see with this system is that since all the foods are prepared in advance, the sodium content seems to be consistently high (like it is with TV Dinners).  NutriSystem does not appear at this point in time to offer low sodium alternatives, and for those of us with a low tolerance to Sodium, the foods will do us more harm than good.  For instance, their Chicken Salad for lunch contains 420 mg of sodium, their Fettuccine Alfredo contains 500 mg of Sodium.  For dinner even their Grilled Chicken breast has 250 mg of Sodium, Chicken Pasta Parmesan has 590 mg of Sodium; even their Vegetarian Chili has 650 mg of Sodium.   Granted, they advertise deserts, but did you know you get one cookie for desert?  I don’t know about you, but if I only get one cookie, I will want more cookies… it seems to me it would be almost better to have no cookies at all. Their chocolate cake looks enticing until you see that it has 250 mg of Sodium again…

Another thing to watch for, not just with NutriSystem, is if you look at some of the people who have posted claims that they lost weight, in little print it states that the results are NOT typical and (I find this very interesting) the individuals are remunerated.

 I do not want to say that NutriSystem is a bad system, but you need to be aware of what is out there and if the claims are noted as not typical.  NutriSystem does offer some very useful tools for you to help monitor and track your progress, some of these tools I wish CNI offered, like the Weight & Measurement log and Progress Tracker.  I have been tracking my weight, but never got around to measuring myself.  If I had an actual log to complete, I would have most likely remembered to measure myself and then kept track.  To date, I have yet to measure myself (my bad..) except that I know my current clothes are continuing to get loser.  The cool thing about the NutriSystem tools is that you can join free to use them.  Something to consider. 

In summary, the CNI Core4 system does not require you to change what you eat or how you eat, you just take the Core4 products along with the foods you do currently eat.  The cost for a full month of Core4 products will be no more than $149.00 a month, and can be less.  If you use one CNI product less than some others, you can order what you need monthly and do not have to order a full monthly kit each time.  Also, if you get others involved in the Core4 system, you can get paid, which would also defray the cost of losing weight.  

NutriSystem offers full meal plans (breakfast, lunch, dinner and desert) and to lose weight you need to eat their foods.  If you are single, or just don’t have time to prepare any foods, then the NutriSystem plan may work well for you.  If you have a family, or are not the only person in the household, or if you are salt intolerant, NutriSystem may not work for you.  And lastly, if you get others to use NutriSystem based on your results, you will not get paid like you can with the Core4 System.

Next week, I will continue to research other weight loss systems for comparisons. 

If you have any questions regarding the CNI Core4 system, please feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail me at hawgwash1@yahoo.com, or check out our website at www.weightrenegade.com.

Last week we talked a little about my history and why I started looking for a weight loss system.  We started reviewing Cal Nutrisciences Core4 system since that is what I am currently using and can give a personal review.  Tonight we will finish the review of the Core4 products and what they do.   We talked about the benefits of Accelerate and how it was used last week.  Next week we will begin reviewing other weight loss / weight management systems on the market. 

The next product in the Core4 system is Lean.  Lean is a protein smoothie that is used as a meal replacement.  It satisfies your appetite, also reduces food cravings and supports fat metabolism.  I attempt to drink Lean about once a day, but there are days where I am not at home to mix the Lean up.  It only comes in one flavor, vanilla, but I have found that if you mix about two ounces of fruit juice and reduce the water by the same two ounces, you can very easily change the flavor of your smoothie.  I have also put fresh fruit in with my Lean to make the drink interesting.   I like the fact that I have access to a good tasting protein smoothie, it is not really gritty tasting and tastes great if mixed with ice-cold water.  They do also suggest you can use skim milk to mix the Lean, but since I am allergic to dairy, I have not tried that variation.

Flush is a pill that is taken once, about an hour before bedtime.  Flush is a gentle, organic daily colon cleanse.  It is designed to boost fat burning, support weight loss, improve digestion, decreases bloating, removes pollutants and toxins from your system and helps to improves the absorption of supplements.  I have found that by taking one Flush an hour before bedtime is the most effective for me.  I have tried taking two pills before bedtime, but I then seem to bloat more.  As mentioned earlier, I really like waking up in the morning to find that I am hungry.  Flush is a detox pill, but it is not designed to cause you to be near a bathroom all day long.  I found it to improve my bowel movements, but I am not running to the bathroom all day long.  I have personally noticed that I do not bloat like I used to.  I can now wear finger rings.  I used to not be able to wear rings because I would bloat so often and so fast, the rings would become too tight and painful.  It is fun to be able to wear all the rings I have.

Lastly, the flagship product, Cheat.  Cheat is the world’s first sprinkle on item that is clinically proven to eliminate up to 25% of the calories consumed.  It is a tasteless powder.  You can sprinkle Cheat on almost anything except soups or very watery foods.  One of the main ingredients of Cheat is the Konnyako root from Japan.  This fiber expands to trap portions of food, causing it to safely pass through your system without being absorbed.  This too is an all-natural fiber that helps to keep your system working well.  I have personally put Cheat on my ice cream, on pies, donuts, pizza and anything else that tickles my fancy.  I have not put it in soups because it does expand into a gel, and that looks really gross.  Even if you use Cheat alone, you stand to lose weight because in all weight loss programs, you are told to eat less in order to lose weight.  By sprinkling on Cheat, you are effectively eating 25% less without denying yourself the enjoyment of eating that particular food item. 

To date, I have lost almost 20 pounds in a little over 2 months.  Many people have lost more weight in a shorter period of time, but I have to admit I have not been the most diligent at using the Core4 products.  The great news is that even with me not using the products religiously, I am still in a weight loss mode.  My clothes are much looser, I actually had to purchase smaller sized jeans.  I am pleased with my personal results and am glad to not be putting the weight back on even if I am not diligent about using all the Core4 products daily.

If you would like more information on the Core4 system, please feel free to contact me or check out www.weightrenegade.com.  

Next week we will start to cover some other weight loss  / weight management systems on the market today.

As promised in last week’s blog, I will review some weight loss / weight management products that are on the market.  Tonight and next week I will review Cal Nutrisciences (CNI) Core4 System.  The reason I have chosen this system first to discuss is because I am currently using these products and can provide some first-hand information on the products.  In future weeks, I will continue to research and discuss other products on the market, so please do not think I am only going to promote one item.  The key to successful weight loss or weight control is to find what works well for you personally.  Just because a product may work well for one person does not mean it will work well for another person.  Our body types are so different, that there is no way one product will work for everyone.

I would like to provide a personal brief history so you can better understand my quest for weight control systems.  After I passed 35, I have struggled with weight gain.  I have always been active, pursuing outdoor sports and liking all kinds of physical activity.  I did find though that as job responsibilities increased, more time was spent in the office and less time was spent pursuing outdoor activities.  That combined with aging (yes, we all do..) contributed to my weight gain.  After passing 45, I found it to be extremely difficult to take the weight gains off.  I became more active, but the weight remained.  It seemed that I had to spend more time working out in order to just maintain my weight.  It was becoming more and more difficult to remove the weight that did add-on to my body.  Throughout the years I have tried a few different products to help me lose weight.  I even spent a year working out at a gym with a personal trainer to get my weight under control.  The personal training worked, but if you can’t afford a personal trainer, it really is hard to keep a pattern going.  I was at the gym 5 days a week, usually right after work.  I also found that during the winter months, I tended to get sick a lot because some people would go to the gym even if they were sick.  I got tired of getting sick over the winter, and stopped going regularly to the gym.  Obviously that did not help my weight control.  I managed to put all the weight back on that I had spent a year losing.  Now my travel schedule really prevents me from getting regular gym workouts so I had to start looking for another means of weight management.

Over the summer it was suggested that I look into a new product offering by CNI, Core4.  This system comprises 4 different products, with their flagship product, Cheat, as an innovative sprinkle-on additive to almost any food you eat.  CNI claims that you do not need to change what you eat or how you eat if you went on the Core4 system.  That statement is basically true, but there are reasonable changes that are made whenever you are working to lose weight.

The four products in the Core4 system are Accelerate, Cheat, Lean, and Flush.   Tonight I will discuss the benefits of Accelerate.  Next week I will conclude the discussion of the Core4 system by covering Lean, Flush and Cheat.

Accelerate is a pill that is taken once in the morning that is designed to thermogenically burn fat.  It is formulated to stimulate the thermogenic fat burning and weight loss process, suppress your appetite, and to promote energy and stamina.  I have found that over the first few days of taking Accelerate, my appetite has decreased and I appear to digest food better.  I am now hungry before meals.  I used to not feel hungry even if I ate 12 hours earlier.  You would think that is a good thing, but I would eat because it was lunch time, not because I was hungry.  I was not digesting food fast, so as I added food to my belly, I ended up not digesting the food properly.  Now that I have been on the Accelerate for a few months, I find that I digest food much faster.  In the mornings, I actually wake up HUNGRY.  I used to wake up and still burp dinner from the night before.  It really is wonderful to know that you actually digested the meal you ate instead of having it just sit in your belly for hours on end.  I have not noticed a large energy increase, but have noticed that I don’t crave those mid-day naps as much as I used to.

Next week we will conclude this discussion by covering the benefits of Lean, Flush, and Cheat.  If you have specific questions, please feel free to contact me.  If you want more information on the Core4 products, please visit www.weightrenegade.com.

Welcome to Weight Renegade.  In this blog we will be discussing weight loss strategies, healthy weight loss ideas, various weight loss programs, weight management and how to maintain your personal best weight.

This blog will be updated weekly, usually on Mondays.  I am always looking for input and discussion points.  Please feel free to post comments or send me messages.  I cannot guarantee an immediate response, but will promise you I will respond within 48 hours.

Today I am going to briefly discuss Obesity in America and the Obesity epidemic.  According to Wikipedia, “Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy and or increased health problems.”

I am sure you have all heard the news reports on the obesity epidemic.  Some reports state that there are over 1 billion adults that are overweight.  I interviewed an RN who gve me her views about the obesity epidemic in America and how morbid obesity has become normal instead of being the exception to the rule.  This RN works in ICU at one of the major hospitals in Las Vegas, NV.  She claims that a large number of the people who are admitted to ICU are obese and the problems they were placed in the hospital for are directly related to their weight problem.

Part of the cause of this epidemic can be attributed to the preponderance of fast food restaurants and the ease at which you can obtain low quality foods there.  Many adults, after working 10+ hour days, do not want, nor have the time to go home and prepare a healthy meal.  It is so much easier to stop by a fast food restaurant and pick up some pre-made meal for themselves or their family.  Even grocery stors provide pre-packaged foods that are not as nutritious as they should be.  Traditionally, these foods are nutrient poor with high levels of sugar and saturated fats.   Several of the fast food restaurants are working towards improving their menu offerings, but they still have a long way to go.

Part of the problem can also be attributed to the fact that once we start eating fast food, we forget what it is to eat a well balanced meal.  How many sit-down restaurants actually serve fresh vegetables?  How many include salads as part of the meal instead of an option to go with a meal?  Do our children know what should be included in a well balanced meal?

You may ask yourself, why is this epidemic happening, and what negative effects, really, are there?  Basically, as we develop as a country, convenience, automated transportation, shifts away from physically demanding jobs and technology in the home are all contributing factors to obesity.  As mentioned earlier, as we work longer hours in the office, we have less time to spend creating meals.  We rely more on modes of transportation to get from point A to point B instead of walking or riding a bicycle.  Once home, it is easier to stuff a meal in the microwave instead of putting ingredients together to feed a family.  The computer age has also caused us to become more inactive, by allowing us to chat or play games with our neighbors on-line instead of walking over to their house. 

We have all heard the doctor’s state that in order to lose weight, we must eat less and excercise more.  When we seem to be working more, we may tend to eat while working (and consequently not paying attention to the quantity of food consumed) and we then have less time and enthusiasm to excercise. 

Health problems such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, skin problems, infertility, and type 2 diabetes have become more prevalent as people’s weight increases.

I have found some products that I believe can help reduce obesity without extreme measures.  I will discuss what those products are and what they do in future blogs (www.weightrenegade.com).  

Over the course of time, we will be discussing what comprises a healthy meal, how to start a healthy weight loss program, and how to lose weight without changing significantly what you eat. 

Take care, we will chat more next week.

et cetera