How to Restore your Metabolism Part 1: Correcting Nutrient Deficiencies

There’s an epidemic of nutrient deficiency right now, with studies showing people deficient in 3-15 nutrients. When this happens, your body doesn’t work right and your metabolism slows.  I know this first hand when I couldn’t lose weight for 6 straight weeks, no matter what I tried. I learned a ton and now I’m sharing it with you.

Maybe you’re someone who wants to improve your nutrition and don’t know where to start… OR you’re someone who’s been working out and eating right, but not seeing a lot of results. In this video we give you 5 Steps to Improving your Nutrition & Restoring your Metabolism.

After being diagnosed with Hypothyroid/Hashimotos, I decided not to go the route of traditional medicine and treat it with nutrition. I learned there are 10 nutrients your thyroid needs to operate efficiently. I’ll cover all 10 in a separate blog but for now, we’ll cover 3 of them IN DEPTH.

in the video above and the blog below, we’re covering 3 of the biggest nutrients that can affect your thyroid, testosterone, metabolism and health overall. They’re also the most common to be deficient in.

5 Steps to Improving your Nutrition

  1. Eat more lean protein — when you want to lose body-fat, we recommend eating 40% of your daily calories as protein. This includes chicken, fish, steak, beef, whey protein, plant-based protein and more. A great macro ratio is 40%p / 30%c / 30%f
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  2. Drink more water — most people are dehydrated and this reduces your energy & athletic performance by 20-25%. Aim for drinking a minimum of your weight divided in half. For example: If you weigh 150 lbs, drink at least 75 oz.   Our personal recommendations are 128 oz (1 gallon) for women, and 192 oz (1.5 gallons) for men each day.
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  3. More Fish and Fish Oil — Omega 3s (anti-inflammatory) are important to have in your diet so that it can off-set all the Omega 6 (inflammatory) foods in your diet.  It’s important to get about 1500-3000 MG/day of EPA & DHA. Most fish oil supplements don’t have enough but we found one that we love. It’s molecularly distilled, which removes heavy metals, PCBs and impurities.  Dr. Tobias’s Optimum Omega 3 Fish Oil – Triple Strength:dr-tobias-fish-oil-triple-strength
  4. Eat More Nutrient Dense Food that’s loaded with vitamins & minerals. Every Beachbody program comes with a list of approved foods that are nutrient dense.
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  5. Use Natural Supplements – studies show that it’s nearly impossible to get all the nutrients you need from food alone. The best place to start with a whole-food, natural meal-replacement shake is Shakeology. It’s loaded with 70 nutrients including protein, vitamins & minerals, prebiotics/probiotics (for gut health), digestive enzymes and superfoods.We always recommend our clients start with Shakeology first because it’s the quickest/easiest to improve your nutrition over-night. It’ll help you lose weight, have more energy, have less cravings and improve digestive health.

 

shakeology-glasses

To learn more about Shakeology, click here.

NOTE: If you buy Shakeology through this site, we’ll design a custom meal plan for you and give you a spot in our Challenge Group so you have easy/daily access to us for support & accountability!

After getting on Shakeology, it’s important to look at a few more common nutrient deficiencies that you may need a separate supplement for. See below:

Correcting Vitamin D Deficiency

Correcting Vitamin D Deficiency

Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency: 

  1. difficulty thinking clearly
  2. tired
  3. difficulty losing weight, weight gain
  4. gut problems
  5. depression-like feelings
  6. bone pain
  7. muscle weakness
  8. low testosterone

Just how common is Vitamin D deficiency?
I was first tipped off to the importance of Vitamin D when a Doctor in Arizona told my friend that there is an epidemic of Vitamin D Deficiency, even in sunny climates. I thought if I just went out in the sun a few times a week, I’d get enough Vitamin D, right?

Wrong… in fact, Doctors now believe that unless you live in the tropics and go to the beach exposing a lot of skin 3-5x a week, you’ll be deficient in Vitamin D.

I thought I could get enough Vitamin D in my food until I realized the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) is extremely low.

The RDA is only 600 IU of Vitamin D but the Vitamin D council recommends 5000 UI/day. 

At the same time, while studying for my Nutrition Coach certification with Precision Nutrition, I learned that this study and this study in the JISSN both concluded that Vitamin D was one of the most common deficiencies.

According to Harvard University, an estimated 1 billion people are low in vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiencies can cause short-term symptoms and long-term complications.

I then looked at Examine.com’s Supplement Report. For those of you who don’t know, Examine has a team of a dozen PHD researches who review every pieces of nutrition-related research, catalog it and summarize it.  I was surprised that at the very top of this 1200 page report, it said your top priority should be supplementing Vitamin D.

Studies found that 92% of people with Hypothyroid were deficient in Vitamin D

Why is Vitamin D so important for Metabolism, even with a working thyroid?
Your body needs Vitamin D to allow your Thyroid hormone to raise your metabolic rate!  Yes, that means, even if your Thyroid levels are normal, your T4 thyroid hormone cannot activate the receptor on cells, to increase metabolism!  Dr. Peter Osborn explains this in more detail here.

Vitamin D is so important in many different functions in the body, including testosterone!

 

What are the optimal levels of Vitamin D in my body?

vitamin-d

 

How can I get my Vitamin D levels checked?
You can ask your doctor to run the Vitamin D 25-Hydroxy test or you can do what we did and request your own lab work through UltaTestLabs for only $39 (save another 10% with code: ULTA41012) or MyMedLab for $80. After paying for it online, you just print out the form and take it to a lab near you and they’ll draw your blood. Your results will be emailed to you within 3-5 days.

Then use this article at StopTheThyroidMadness to interpret your Vitamin D results.

Our Lab Results for Vitamin D
So both Kate and I decided to get your Vitamin D levels checked, and sure enough, the results concluded we were both very low.

There’s something you should know about lab work with your doctor. They are only trained to identify extreme deficiencies. The “normal” range for Vitamin D is 30 – 100.  David’s results came back at 32.9 so technically this is within the normal range, so a doctor may not even mention this as a problem to you.

The optimal levels are MUCH higher! Through my reading on StopTheThyroidMadness.com, Doctor Axe, and Dr. Amy Myers, your Vitamin D levels should be up around 50-70 to support your thyroid.

our-vitamin-d-levels

What Can I do to increase my Vitamin D levels?
Try to get out in the sun and expose as much skin as possible for 15-20 mins. Even doing this, it won’t be enough and you’ll need to supplement.

You can eat foods such as fatty fish like tuna, mackerel, salmon, beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, etc. It still may not be enough and you’ll need to supplement.

BEFORE YOU RUN OUT AND BUY A CHEAP VITAMIN, READ THIS!
A multivitamin with Vitamin D will waste your money because it won’t make much of a difference in raising your levels.  The best form of Vitamin D is D3 CHOLECALCIFEROL. This is the same form of Vitamin D made in your skin when exposed to sun and it’s the most absorbable in your body.

The best Vitamin D supplements we recommend:
After doing our research, the 2 best supplements we’ve found for potency and effectiveness (and available from Amazon) are:

How much Vitamin D should I take?
Based on recommendations from Doctors I’ve seen, you may need about 4000-8000 IUs/daily to correct a deficiency and once you’re up at optimal levels, you can probably reduce daily intake to 2000 IUs/daily.

After Kate & I have taken these supplements for 40 days, we will be returning back to get our Vitamin D levels checked AGAIN and we will show you the difference these supplements made!

Correcting Iron Deficiency

Correcting IRON Deficiency

Symptoms of IRON Deficiency: 

  1. you’re exhausted
  2. have symptoms of hypothyroid
  3. woman have heavy periods
  4. you get short of breath easily
  5. your head hurts
  6. 15% get restless leg syndrome
  7. hair loss
  8. loss of sex drive

Just how common is IRON deficiency?
Iron is THE MOST COMMON nutritional deficiency in the united states and women are among those at greatest risk. Without enough iron, everything suffers including energy levels and even your thyroid.

I became aware of Iron and how it affects the thyroid after I showed signs of early-stage Hashimotos and started researching what nutrients are needed to support the thyroid. It turns out that a lot of people live with this deficiency and don’t know how to treat it effectively!

Why is IRON important for the Thyroid?
It turns out that Iron is essential for creating T3 and converting T4 to T3.  You can learn all about the 7 reasons having low iron can be a problem for hypothyroid patients in this article on StopTheThyroidMadness.com

Why are most iron tests insufficient?
Most iron tests only look at the small amount of iron that’s in your blood, NOT how much iron (ferritin) is being stored in the body. Kate found that her Iron blood level was 100+ but her ferritin was only 13 !!! (YIKES)!  She had mentioned being low on iron her whole life… and this confirms it.

What are the 4 Iron tests I should be getting?
It’s four iron labs we need: serum iron, % saturation, TIBC and Ferritin.   Ferritin is how much iron is stored in your body. We found this # to be extremely low for Kate.   To see where patients fall when iron is optimal, this page will help: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/lab-values sttm-graphic-iron-labs-preparation-lab-results-768x768

How can I get my Iron levels checked?
You can ask your doctor to run these 4 Iron tests: serum iron, % saturation, TIBC and Ferritin or you can do what we did and request your own lab work through UltaTestLabs for only $35 (save another 10% with code: ULTA41012)   or use MyMedLab for $65. After paying for it online, you just print out the form and take it to a lab near you and they’ll draw your blood. Your results will be emailed to you within 3-5 days. Then use this article at StopTheThyroidMadness to interpret your iron levels.

Our Lab Results for Iron
So both Kate and I decided to get your Iron levels checked, and we found that Kate was VERY deficient and I had just a slight deficiency.

Without the 4 tests, we wouldn’t have been able to see how bad it was for Kate. The normal Iron test looks at a small amount of iron in the blood and Kate’s looked pretty good. It’s when you look at her Ferritin (how much iron is stored in the body) that you see how extremely low it is.

our-iron-levels-sept-2016

 

What should my Iron levels be?
Based on recommendations from StopTheThyroidMadness.com:

Ferritin levels should be 70-90 for women and men over 100. If you’re below 50, your levels are way too low and can be causing problems.

Iron (total iron, aka serum iron) should be close to 110 for women and upper 130s for men.

PERCENT % Saturation levels should be 35% for women, 40-45% for men.

TIBC should be about 1/4th above the bottom number in the range provided. With healthy amounts of iron, this # will be in the low range.

To see a full explanation of all 4 levels, visit this page here.

 

What Foods can I eat to increase my iron?
Foods rich in iron include lean meats, liver, eggs, green leafy vegetables (spinach, collard greens, kale), wheat germ, whole grain breads and cereals (though not for those with gluten problems), raisins, and molasses.

 

BEFORE YOU RUN OUT AND BUY A CHEAP IRON SUPPLEMENT, READ THIS!
There are many forms of iron supplements out there but our favorite is IRON BISGLYCINATE because it causes less constipation and the milligrams on the bottle equal the amount of elemental iron in the tablets, so you know how much you’re getting.

 

The best Iron BISGLYCINATE Supplement we recommend: 

After doing our research, the best supplement we found and are using is:

solgar-gentle-iron

How much should Iron supplement should I take?
Hypothyroid patients report that they need 150-200 mg a day, spread out 3x a day to raise their iron levels to optimal levels and it can take 6-8 weeks. (Source: StopTheThyroidMadness.com)

Remember, when correcting a deficiency, you often need a much larger dose until levels are optimal, then you can continue a reduced amount.

After Kate & I have taken this for 6 week, we will be returning back to get our Iron levels checked AGAIN and we will show you the difference this supplement made!

Correcting Zinc Deficiency

Correcting Zinc Deficiency

Symptoms of Zinc Deficiency: 

  1. Weak immunity
  2. Slowed metabolism
  3. Trouble focusing and paying attention
  4. Reduced testosterone
  5. Hypothyroid problems
  6. Thinning hair
  7. Allergies
  8. Leaky Gut
  9. Acne & Rashes

 

Top Benefits of Zinc:

  • Improved athletic performance and strength
  • Prevents cancer and boosts immune system
  • Increased testosterone and fertility for men
  • Cell repair
  • May treat thinning hair and baldness
  • Improved cardiovascular health
  • Elevated mood
  • Deeper sleep

Just how common is Zinc deficiency?
Although severe zinc deficiency is quite rare, the Linus Pauling Institute estimates that up to 2 billion people are affected by marginal zinc levels, which can affect virtually every aspect of your health. (3)

It’s also a common held belief about doctors who treat hypothyroid that the RDA amounts for Zinc are not nearly enough.

If you exercise a lot, you’re more likely to be deficient in zinc!

This study analyzed 70 athlete diets. Every single diet was deficient in at least three nutrients. Some diets were missing up to fifteen nutrients! The most common deficiencies?

  • iodine
  • vitamin D
  • zinc
  • vitamin E
  • calcium

 

Why is Zinc important for the body and Thyroid?
Zinc is used in over 300 enzyme reactions in the body and is essential for testosterone & thyroid hormone production. Zinc is used by the body to produce TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone).  It also allows conversion of T4 thyroid into T3.  When you’re deficient in it, your metabolism is slowed.

It’s 1 of 10 essential nutrients needed for the thyroid. You can read more about the 10 Nutrient Deficiencies every Thyroid Patient should have checked.

How can I get my Zinc levels checked?
You can ask your doctor to check your Zinc levels or you can do what we did and request your own lab work through UltaTestLabs for only $44 (save another 10% with code: ULTA41012)   or use MyMedLab for $50.  After paying for it online, you just print out the form and take it to a lab near you and they’ll draw your blood. Your results will be emailed to you within 3-5 days. Then use this article at StopTheThyroidMadness to interpret your Zinc levels.

Our Lab Results for Zinc
I got my lab levels checked and it turns out I have a moderate deficiency.  The recommendation is to be in the top 3rd of the range.

So when you first look at my results below, you might think 86 seems good out of a range of 56-134, but to be in the top 3rd of the range, it should be 108-134.

 

zinc

 

What should my Zinc levels be?
Based on recommendations from StopTheThyroidMadness.com: the Top third of the range is optimal.

What Foods can I eat to increase my Zinc?
Foods rich in zinc include pumpkin seeds, grass-fed beef, lamb, cashews, chickpeas, mushrooms, chicken, turkey, eggs, almonds, kefir or yogurt, spinach, cocoa powder.

I eat a lot of these foods and I was STILL moderately deficient in zinc! Why? The more you workout and sweat, the more Zinc you deplete!

Why it may be essential to supplement Zinc:
Zinc is not stored in the body so it’s important to get it in daily.

BEFORE YOU RUN OUT AND BUY A CHEAP ZINC SUPPLEMENT, READ THIS!
There are many forms of zinc, about 10+ that I’ve seen so far. Research shows that Zinc Orotate is the most absorbed in the body. I’d hate to see you waste your time and money on a supplement that doesn’t raise your levels in your body.

The best Zinc Orotate Supplement we recommend:
After doing our research, the best supplement we found and are using is Zinc Orotate because it’s the most absorbed:

zinc-orotate

How much should Zinc supplement should I take?
The RDA is extremely low, around 11mg for adult men and 8 mg for adult women but those are typically the minimum amounts to stave off major health complications.

Based on my research on the web from various doctors who treat hypothryoidism, you need about 50 mg of zinc a day to correct a deficiency. But keep in mind your #s should be less if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding:

According to Dr. Axe,

  • Pregnant women over 18 should limit their zinc intake to 40 mg per day
  • Pregnant women under 18 should limit their zinc intake to 34 mg per day
  • Breast-feeding women over 18 should limit their zinc intake to 40 mg per day
  • Breast-feeding women under 18 should limit their zinc intake to 34 mg per day

 

After David has taken this for 6 weeks, I’ll be returning to get my Zinc levels checked again to see how it worked.