Balance Weight & Metabolism: Herbs, Mushrooms & Lifestyle
We all want to look good.
More importantly, we all want to feel good, too. For a lot of us, feeling good about how we look is a huge part of this, since it lends us a certain level of confidence.
For many people, weight is central to this as well: for looking good, feeling good, and looking good so one can feel good.
When we focus on getting fitter and physically healthier, losing weight is one of the most common targets we aim for—and in certain people, slimming down and building muscle makes them feel better about how they look.
Of course, that is a matter of opinion: big or little, beauty takes many forms.
But that’s not to say there isn’t a threshold where weight, no matter its beauty in the eye of the beholder, could have undesirable impacts on health if it is crossed.
MANAGING WEIGHT: IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT APPEARANCE
Skinny or fat, big or little, looking and feeling good about appearance shouldn’t have to be tied to weight.
Yet being overweight or obese can and does have negative health effects.
On that front, having unhealthy weight can literally make someone NOT feel good when it comes to wellness.
And it must be said too: it’s not limited to being overweight. Being underweight can be just as harmful and unhealthy in many ways.
Over time, of course, not feeling well—whether overweight or underweight—is often a symptom of something worse.
HOW CAN AN UNHEALTHY WEIGHT AFFECT HEALTH?
No matter how we slice it, being overweight can be bad for health.
Even if we feel we look good regardless, excess weight can make us unhealthy— which, despite a positive body image, will eventually make one feel unwell no matter how positive they feel about their appearance.
Most importantly, having an unhealthy weight can increase one’s risk of health problems developing.
Studies show being overweight can increase health problems like:
- Brain fog
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar
- Hormone imbalance
- Low energy
- Low testosterone
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Poor circulation
- Stress and depression
- Thyroid problems
Being underweight can be just as bad, increasing health problems like:
- Blood clotting issues
- Bone loss
- Brain fog
- Difficulty with athletic abilities
- Hair loss
- Hormone imbalance
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Low immunity
- Low energy
- Susceptibility to more colds and flus
WHAT CAN WEIGHT-CAUSED UNHEALTHINESS LEAD TO?
Unhealthy weight opens the door to a number of health problems.
In turn, these weight-caused health problems can themselves be a gateway to yet more serious issues.
It’s quite established in the medical world that excess (or lack of sufficient) weight can be an enormous precursor to some of today’s deadliest chronic diseases.
From being overweight, these may include:
- Clinical depression
- Eating disorders
- Heart disease
- Kidney problems
- Liver problems (such as fatty liver disease)
- Sleep apnea
- Type 2 diabetes
From being underweight, these may also include:
- Autoimmune disorders (like rheumatoid arthritis)
- Eating disorders
- Fertility and reproductive disorders
FUELING CHANGE: METABOLISM & ITS EFFECTS ON WEIGHT & HEALTH
If weight is becoming unhealthy, fortunately, there are lots of ways it can be managed.
All these different ways tend to target one key factor: metabolism.
Metabolism is a function that describes how our body creates, releases, and uses energy. It’s actually split into two more specific functions: catabolism (releasing/burning energy) and anabolism (use of energy) that ultimately determine weight.
- Catabolism involves the actual processing of chemicals into energy. This includes proteins and sugars turned into releasable energy like ATP. It also sends out hormones and enzymes that transmit important messages—all of this is part of catabolic “energy release.”
- Anabolism is a function working in tandem with all glands and other organs as a part of the endocrine and other systems. It’s a process that ultimately decides where this newly released energy and hormones will go, how they work, and what organs and systems they will build and strengthen.
How much we weigh is ultimately determined by catabolism and anabolism.
In fact, the formula “catabolism minus anabolism” is thought to be the metabolic way to determine weight.
If this formula is off in any way, it could cause unhealthy weight gain or weight loss.
HOW CAN WE MANAGE BETTER METABOLISM FOR HEALTHIER WEIGHT?
How can we attain better metabolism for better weight?
Glands and hormones encouraging too much energy use and anabolism can lead to someone being underweight if there isn’t enough catabolism (energy release) going on.
Inversely, low anabolism with high catabolism makes the body save the energy it’s gained in a storage form we know all too well: body fat. This is what causes weight gain.
Supporting metabolism, which helps bring catabolism and anabolism back into balance, can be a great approach to attaining healthier weight.
Diet helps spark proper catabolism, while exercise, great sleep, and further diet tweaks may assist anabolism. We know this all too well as part of practically every weight loss regimen.
But there are also some special botanicals science suggests could support metabolism.
HERBS & MUSHROOMS COULD HELP SUPPORT BETTER METABOLISM
Keep in mind: herbs and mushrooms are no magic bullet. None of these will magically make weight loss (or weight gain) happen.
All the same, studies show many of these botanicals subtly support metabolism, which encourages better weight.
- ASHWAGANDHA (WITHANIA SOMNIFERA)
The world-famous Ayurvedic Indian tonic root, ashwagandha is immensely popular as an overall health-booster and adaptogen.
Research has shown in it an innate ability to smooth over thyroid imbalances, regulate reproductive function, and to even restore energy and metabolism.
A 2012 study interestingly demonstrated ashwagandha regulating hormonal disturbances, which sometimes cause weight gain.
In short: ashwagandha is a healer of the glands and endocrine system.
This could make it a great support for healing metabolism and achieving healthy body weight.
In fact, a 2016 trial (double-blind, placebo-controlled) found that taking ashwagandha helped subjects combat weight gain when they were experiencing chronic stress and hormone disruption that caused it.
- ASTRAGALUS (ASTRAGALUS MEMBRANACEUS)
A tender vine that looks quite a bit like a pea plant (and is, in fact, a relative), astragalus has done wonders for health for thousands of years.
Its benefits to immunity, for example, are no mystery. And yet, research is unraveling more metabolism perks to this interesting herb.
For one, a 2016 study showed astragalus could boost metabolism, particularly energy use (or specifically anabolism) which helps halt weight gain. Inversely, it could also stop unhealthy weight loss through muscle loss in this 2017 study.
A 2013 study also showed it increased metabolism in the bones and reduced nutrient loss, which happens in both weight loss and gain.
- CORDYCEPS (CORDYCEPS MILITARIS)
This strange, exotic fungus has been a perennial favorite among athletes for its perceived energy-and stamina-boosting effects.
As it so happens, the reason for these benefits may just be from how cordyceps affects metabolism.
A 2010 double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed cordyceps helped improve energy in elderly subjects during exercise, which was due to its ability to rev up metabolism. In turn, this encouraged better physical health, weight management, and overall wellness.
A 2014 study also showed that test subjects who took cordyceps had better anabolic metabolism, meaning it used energy nutrients more efficiently to avoid fat buildup and weight gain.
Very interesting—and promising for weight management!
- ELEUTHERO (ACANTHOPANAX SENTICOSUS)
A powerful herb that has often been compared to the illustrious ginseng, eleuthero (also called Siberian ginseng) has nonetheless carved out a unique reputation all its own.
It may not be as effective as the real ginseng. Still, eleuthero has some very interesting research surrounding it and its energy-boosting metabolic effects.
In a 2014 study, its effects on the metabolism and immunity of test subjects showed that it could quite possibly enhance better growth and healthy weight gain.
Yet more research in 2012 showed that eleuthero can help metabolize fats quicker, which may, in turn, assist the body with weight loss and an overall healthier state of metabolism.
- JIAOGULAN (GYNOSTEMMA PENTAPHYLLUM)
It’s amazing how a simple, ritual tea herb from the mountains of Asia could be a shocking agent for change and better health.
Jiaogulan, also called gynostemma, is such an herb. While it is known as a health-booster in multiple areas of wellness, recent research on jiaogulan has brought some fascinating news from the realms of metabolism and weight management.
A 2014 trial that was randomized, placebo-controlled, and double-blind showed that obese subjects who took the herb experienced easier weight loss than those who didn’t take it, or who took placebos.
Such research could push jiaogulan into the top ranks of herbs that could help support healthy weight.
- LICORICE (GLYCYRRHIZA GLABRA)
Licorice root is most well-known for being a home remedy for coughs, colds, flus, and respiratory infections, not unlike its very close relative astragalus.
Some—including practicing herbalists and scientists alike—have found that the root has interesting effects on glands, hormones, and metabolism.
Thus, licorice may very well help balance metabolism and thus support a healthy weight.
A 2017 study even found licorice had anti-obesity benefits by decreasing storage metabolism of fat. It also helped overweight test subjects lose weight by supporting metabolism.
Yet another study in 2014 showed licorice stopping chemicals from interfering with the endocrine system. This could also help boost metabolism and healthy weight management.
- RHODIOLA (RHODIOLA ROSEA)
A tundra plant known to be used by the Vikings, rhodiola has garnered some strong attention in the health world—and not just among alternative practitioners and natural health fanatics.
In fact, the plant could be a small but helpful step for those seeking better weight management according to scientists, though ultimately more research will be needed.
Thus far, a 2013 study has found that rhodiola could naturally and gently stimulate the endocrine system to metabolize weight loss in obese test subjects.
In a different 2012 study, the adaptogenic herb also appeared to “fix” sugar and fat metabolism in a way that encouraged anabolism and avoided weight gain.
- SCHISANDRA (SCHISANDRA CHINENSIS)
Schisandra berry, a beloved Chinese herbal remedy, is also known as “seven flavored berry.” It is thought to contain all seven flavors experienced by man.
Beyond that, there’s a lot to schisandra that’s even more intriguing when it comes to its weight-supporting and metabolic benefits.
A 2012 study found schisandra extract could have anti-obesity effects. Among test subjects, it better-metabolized fats and reduced weight gain.
But an even more interesting study on schisandra happened in 2015.
Obese human test subjects took either schisandra or placebo, and experienced slightly more drastic changes in weight, waist circumference, metabolism, and other factors when using the herb rather than when using placebo.
LIFESTYLE HABITS AND DIET CHANGES
Research-supported herbs and mushrooms can be a small part of supporting healthier metabolism and ultimately reaching one’s weight management goals—whether it be losing weight or gaining it to be healthier.
But remember: more research is needed on herbs of all kinds before calling them weight loss promoters.
On that count too, these botanicals cannot be called “fat burners.” Instead, they naturally and gently support the body’s own abilities to do so.
Most importantly, no herb or mushroom will be effective without combining it with the weight management methods that have been long scientifically and substantially proven to work.
- Exercising regularly
- Getting a healthy dose of morning sun
- Getting better, higher quality sleep
- Keeping diet regularly diverse, eating from healthy food groups
- Eating only healthy fats
- Eating nutrient dense foods
- Avoiding unhealthy foods (such as sugars and processed foods)
- Avoiding simple carbohydrates and grains
- Quitting smoking
- Quitting alcohol
FIND NATURAL METABOLISM SUPPORT
ENDO ADRENAL contains:
- Black pepper extract (piperine)
Get Social – Like, Comment, Pin and Share!
Amaravathi, Ch. Srilatha (2010). Endocrine disturbances in induced Fenvalerate toxicity in rats and its amelioration with Withania somnifera. Veterinary World 3(3) 126-128. Retrieved from http://www.veterinaryworld.org/Vol.3/March/Endocrine%20disturbances%20in%20induced%20Fenvalerate%20toxicity%20in%20rats%20and%20its%20amelioration%20with%20Withania%20somnifera.pdf
Dnyanraj Choudhary, Sauvik Bhattacharyya, Kedar Joshi (2016). Body Weight Management in Adults Under Chronic Stress Through Treatment With Ashwagandha Root Extract A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Journal of Evidence-Based Integrative Medicine 22(1) 96-106. Retrieved from http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/2156587216641830
Xiao-Ping Huang, Hua Tan, Bei-Yang Chen, Chang-Qing Deng (2012). Astragalus Extract Alleviates Nerve Injury after Cerebral Ischemia by Improving Energy Metabolism and Inhibiting Apoptosis. Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin (2012)4 449-454. Retrieved from https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/bpb/35/4/35_4_449/_article/-char/ja/
Lu Lu, Yan-Feng Huang, De-Xiu Chen, Ming Wang, Yu-Cong Zou, Heng Wan, Lian-Bo Wei (2016). Astragalus polysaccharides decrease muscle wasting through Akt/mTOR, ubiquitin proteasome and autophagy signaling in 5/6 nephrectomised rats. Journal of Ethnopharmacology Vol. 186 pp. 125-135. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S037887411630191X
Se-Chan Keng, Hee Jung Kim, Mi-Hyun Kim (2013). Effects of Astragalus membranaceus with Supplemental Calcium on Bone Mineral Density and Bone Metabolism in Calcium-Deficient Ovariectomized Rats. Biological Trace Element Research 151(1) 68-74. Retrieved from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs12011-012-9527-1
Steven Chen, Zhaoping Li, Robert Krochmal, Marlon Abrazado, Woosong Kim, Christopher B. Cooper (2010). Effect of Cs-4® (Cordyceps sinensis) on Exercise Performance in Healthy Older Subjects: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 16(5). Retrieved from https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2009.0226
Shiwei Hu, Jingfeng Wang, Zhaojie Li, Jia Fu, Yuming Wang, Changhu Xue (2014). Hyperglycemic effect of a mixture of sea cucumber and cordyceps sinensis in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat. Journal of Ocean University of China 13(2) 271-277. Retrieved from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11802-014-2073-z
Jie Han, Lianquan Bian, Xianjun Liu, Fei Zhang, Yiran Zhang, Ning Yu (2014). Effects of Acanthopanax senticosus Polysaccharide Supplementation on Growth Performance, Immunity, Blood Parameters and Expression of Pro-Inflammatory Cytokines Genes in Challenged Weaned Piglets. Asian-Australian Journal of Animal Sciences 27(7) 1035-1043. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4093559/
Hyang Rye Won (2012). Effect of Acanthopanax Senticosus Water Extract on Lipid Metabolism in Rats Fed a Hypercholesterol Diet. The Korean Journal of Community Living Science 23(4) 501-508. Retrieved from http://www.koreascience.or.kr/article/ArticleFullRecord.jsp?cn=SHSHCG_2012_v23n4_501
Soo-Hyun Park, Tae-Lin Huh, Sun-Young Kim, Mi-Ra Oh, P.B. Tirupathi Pichiah, Soo-Wan Chae, Youn-Soo Cha (2013). Antiobesity effect of Gynostemma pentaphyllum extract (actiponin): A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Obesity 22(1) 63-71. Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/oby.20539
Zafar Ahmad Malik, Pyare Lal Sharma (2011). An Ethanolic Extract From Licorice (Glycyrrhiza Glabra) Exhibits Anti-Obesity Effects By Decreasing Dietary Fat Absorption In A High Fat Diet-Induced Obesity Rat Model. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research 2(11) 3010-3018. Retrieved from http://ijpsr.com/bft-article/an-ethanolic-extract-from-licorice-glycyrrhiza-glabra-exhibits-anti-obesity-effects-by-decreasing-dietary-fat-absorption-in-a-high-fat-diet-induced-obesity-rat-model/
Xiao Ting Chu, Joseph dela Cruz, Seong Gu Hwang, Heeok Hong (2014). Tumorigenic Effects of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals are Alleviated by Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) Root Extract through Suppression of AhR Expression in Mammalian Cells. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention 15(12) 4809-4813. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/263746011_Tumorigenic_Effects_of_Endocrine-Disrupting_Chemicals_are_Alleviated_by_Licorice_Glycyrrhiza_glabra_Root_Extract_through_Suppression_of_AhR_Expression_in_Mammalian_Cells
Jessica L. Verpeut, Amy L. Walters, Nicholas T. Bello (2013). Citrus aurantium and Rhodiola rosea in combination reduce visceral white adipose tissue and increase hypothalamic norepinephrine in a rat model of diet-induced obesity. Nutrition Research 33(6) 503-512. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0271531713000717
Jianwei Wang, Xianglu Rong, Wenglong Li, Yifan Yang, Johji Yamahara, Yuhao Li (2012). Rhodiola crenulata root ameliorates derangements of glucose and lipid metabolism in a rat model of the metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 142(2) 782-788. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874112003856
Hyoung Joon Park, Jae-Young Cho, Mi Kyeong Kim, Phil-Ok Koh, Kyu-Woan Cho, Chung Hui Kim, Kang-Soo Lee, Byung Yeoup Chung, Gon-Sup Kim, Jae-Hyeon Cho (2012). Anti-obesity effect of Schisandra chinensis in 3T3-L1 cells and high fat diet-induced obese rats. Food Chemistry 134(1) 227-234. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814612002890
Mi-young Song, Jing-hua Wang, Taewoong Eom, Hojun Kim (2015). Schisandra chinensis fruit modulates the gut microbiota composition in association with metabolic markers in obese women: a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled study. Nutrition Research 35(8) 655-663. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0271531715000962
Ever heard of Cordyceps? Probably not but we will be fully aware of its benefits by the end of this article. Dubbed in the health and fitness community as the “magic mushroom,” Cordyceps is capable of …
Sleep can be elusive. As much as people try to chase it down, it’s hard to catch sometimes—and all the more difficult when there’s stress, anxiety, work, or the dreaded job interview in the morning. …
We face temptations and hazards to our physical health almost every day. Some of these we think and talk about often, such as heart disease and high blood pressure. But do we think enough about what …
- Exclusive Offers
- Product Giveaways
- Latest Research
- New Product Launches