Weight management is a long term commitment to leading a healthy lifestyle. Managing your weight may be challenging, however, it doesn’t have to feel like a chore. Determining the cause, finding a healthy protocol, and approaching professionals for help is all it takes. There are many tools and resources available that can be used and made into a healthy habit, allowing for positive results. At Darou Wellness, our team works together to address your individual needs. Below you will find ideas from some of our professionals and their intake on this concern. Please feel free to approach any of our practitioners with any questions you may have.
Caroline Mackey, RNCP, ROHP, CNP, PTS – Nutritionist
The food that you eat is intrinsically related to your weight. However, managing your weight and even losing weight is about much more than the content of your food, the portion sizes and the calories. Often what you eat is just a symptom of what’s going on: blood sugar imbalances will cause sugar and carb cravings that are hard to contain; poor digestion can lead to a lot of bloating and water retention weight issues; unconscious eating often happens because of emotional eating to manage stress and lack of sleep, and the list goes on. We work together to bring about a new relationship for you with food and with your health. Long lasting weight loss and weight management are tied directly to mindfulness, eating food you love and doing things for yourself that promote a healthy body and mind.
Dr. Hilary Booth, ND – Naturopath
Weight loss can be frustrating, especially if you’re eating well, exercising, and still not seeing results. There are often underlying conditions that prevent the body to from losing weight. Common examples of barriers to weight loss include an under active thyroid, bloating and digestive disturbances, food intolerances, stress, hormone imbalances, low energy, poor sleep, insulin resistance, and inflammation. As a Naturopathic Doctor, I use lab testing and a clinical health history to identify and treat these barriers to weight loss.
The common thread between most of these underlying conditions is that the body interprets them as stressors. When the body feels stressed, for example because you’re getting poor quality sleep, it slows down our metabolism to preserve energy. Think of this as being stuck in “survival mode”. The key to weight loss is to get the body out of “survival mode” and working optimally. We do this by addressing underlying conditions and imbalances, and then a healthy diet and exercise will allow you to lose weight.
Kristina Schwalm-Bacquet, BWS, MSW, RSW – Mental Health Therapist
Weight management begins with an assessment of physiological barriers to progress, and creating an appropriate diet and exercise plan for your body. Unfortunately, knowing what to do is often not the same as actually doing it. We can begin a day with the best intentions, and by 2pm, when the coffee truck arrives, we are singing a different tune. Old habits and thoughts swoop in, i.e: “why should I deprive myself of that treat, look how happy everyone else looks!” Suddenly what we know goes out the window, and once again we find ourselves looking back on the day with regret. Altering the thoughts and behaviours that interfere with our goals is the job of the Cognitive Behavioural Therapist. In CBT treatment for weight management we learn to identify the thoughts and emotions that provoke our unwanted eating behaviours, and retrain our brains to form new healthful thought and habits. The end game is a new habit, a healthy relationship to diet and exercise and an overall healthy lifestyle.
Shirley Srubiski, R.Kin, CSEP-CPT – Kinesiologist and Personal Trainer
An appropriately designed physical activity program is an essential part of any weight loss plan. The most basic reason being that energy out (calories burned) has to be greater than the energy in (calories consumed). The best physical activity program should include both aerobic and resistance training. Resistance training builds muscle, which is more metabolically demanding than fat tissue and takes up less space; so a pound of muscle and a pound of fat are not equal when slipping into a pair of jeans. For that reason, I prefer not to look at the number on the scale. The number may not change much but your body composition likely will with a well designed exercise program. Bottom line: improving cardiovascular fitness and increasing muscle mass results in shedding fat, feeling stronger, and an overall healthier body.
Sounds easy, right? In truth, most people without a background knowledge in fitness will be at a loss as to where to start on day 1 at the gym. Having a qualified fitness professional design and guide you through your program can help you effectively and safely reach your goals without injury. A qualified fitness professional is trained to monitor form and individually customize the variables of the FITT Principle:
- Frequency – how often you are exercising
- Intensity – the load or resistance you are using
- Time – duration of each session
- Type – what activity you are doing
If you are already living with aches and pains or a chronic injury or illness it is even more vital to exercise under the supervision of a Kinesiologist/Personal trainer who has experience with musculoskeletal injuries and medical conditions.
The goal should always be to achieve a health weight safely and ultimately feel good in your own body which is best achieved with the help of a knowledgeable professional.