One of the most frustrating complaints of my female patients is that they just can’t seem to get rid of belly fat. It not only makes them feel unattractive but, when I tell them it also puts their bones at high risk, it’s double trouble. The good news is there is a natural way that all my beautiful female patients can both recover their youthful waistlines and protect their bone health at the same time. Here’s what I’ve found works and what recent research has also found…
Boosting Growth Hormone Decreases Waistline and Saves Bones
Before I tell you what you can to do boost your levels of growth hormone (GH) naturally, let me tell you why it’s so important to your health. Healthy levels of natural growth hormone is what keeps you looking young, full of energy and your body functioning at its healthy optimum. A few of the things growth hormone does includes keeping your skin smooth, unwrinkled and firm, your muscles tight, your body fat low, your brain sharp, your heart healthy and your bones strong.
Unfortunately, as you reach the ripe old age of 25, your natural growth hormone levels start to decrease a little with each birthday. And each decrease in GH chips away at the youthful health of all those systems I mentioned above. Dwindling GH is what ushers in aging and all its tell-tale signs. Your skin starts to wrinkle, you start to gain body fat in places you’ve never had it, your muscles decrease in strength and tone and you start having memory glitches.
By the time you reach middle age, about 50-60, your levels of growth hormone have decreased a whopping 85%! It’s no wonder these are the years where most health issues start appearing. And let’s not forget menopause and andropause – 2 big life changers signaled by low GH with decreasing estrogen and testosterone following.
If you’re a woman, decreased growth hormone also means greater obesity. It also means increased risk for osteoporosis, fractures and disability – especially if you’re menopausal. This was the conclusion of a study cited by the International Osteoporosis Foundation. European researchers found that obese, menopausal women were at a much greater risk for what’s called “fragility fractures”. These are fractures of the ankle, lower leg, wrist and upper arm. They found that 1 in 4 obese menopausal women are victim to these fractures.
A study out of the Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital Radiology Department, revealed why increased belly fat and decreased GH raised such significant health risks for women. Low GH sets a woman up for heart disease and diabetes as well as weaker bones. The MGH researchers looked at pre-menopausal women who had a BMI (body mass index) of 35. They set out to learn if supplementing the women with growth hormone had any effect on their belly fat and bone health. The results were astounding.
The researchers found that the women who received supplemental growth hormone had both a significant loss in abdominal fat and an increase in bone formation. Their Vitamin D levels rose as well. In fact, those with the most abdominal fat loss had the greatest increase in bone formation. In addition, they also had greater muscle mass growth and a significant decrease in cardiac inflammation markers (C-RP) as well as LDL “bad” cholesterol.
The researchers concluded that growth hormone replacement would be a viable treatment for menopausal women to help them both decrease BMI/belly fat, boost muscle growth, and protect them from bone loss. And that’s just a fraction of the anti-aging benefits of growth hormone replacement. By now you may be thinking, sounds great, where do I sign up for replacement GH?
While the research findings about GH and bone protection in women are amazing, the real problem is cost. Getting growth hormone injections at your doctor’s, or an anti-aging specialist’s, office can be a very costly matter. At over $1,000 per treatment, given once a month, “off-the shelf” growth hormone replacement is not something that the average person can afford. Further, the safety of growth hormone injections has not been well-studied.
However, there is a completely natural and safe way to boost your body’s production of its own growth hormone that works in harmony with your individual body chemistry.
Boost GH Naturally To Shrink Your Waist and Build Your Bones
Now, there are a lot of “GH” boosters on the market that you can try. But, I recommend helping your body make its own, completely exclusive-to-you, GH formula. Here’s how…
1. Diet. A higher protein, lower carbohydrate diet will help you release more of your own GH. Eat between 0.5 and 1 gram protein per pound of body weight. Lean, grass-fed beef, free-range poultry and high Omega-3 content fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna) are your best sources. Omit refined sugar and fructose from your diet. Limit carbs from grains, vegetables, fruits to no more than 20 grams per meal. This helps keep your blood sugar stable as well. Eat a high protein snack (no carbs) before bedtime to help release GH in the first hour of your sleep.
Goji berries contain a substance called “sesquiterpenoids” that significantly boost GH release. They’re a little costly, but you can find them at places like Whole Foods Market, Trader Joe’s, etc. You can also grow your own stash of free goji berries in your yard.
Other foods that boost GH release are raspberries, pineapple, soy beans, fava beans, yogurt, and raisins. But don’t eat them before bed as the sugar/carbs in them slows GH release. Also, coconut oil, whey protein and nuts have been shown in studies to boost release of GH.
2. Exercise. HIT (high intensity burst training) helps release GH. Basically, you do aerobic exercise (your choice) at a very intense burst of effort for 30 seconds, then rest 2 seconds, then repeat for a series of 6 cycles per workout. In addition, resistance training with weights or bands or whole body exercise helps release GH.
3. Sleep. The most GH is released in the first hour of sleep and then in smaller increments as you sleep. Be sure your sleep is uninterrupted in a dark room and that you sleep at least 7-8 hours.
4. Supplements: The following supplements, nutrients and hormone precursors help release GH. All can be found in a vitamin outlet or online.
a. DHEA. DHEA is a hormone precursor that helps to make several hormones. Take 5-10 mg a day, just enough to boost both GH and estrogen. Estrogen also helps protect a woman’s bones. DHEA was also proven in an Italian study back in 2010 to help postmenopausal women with dyspareunia, or painful intercourse, due to de-estrogenized vaginal tissues.
b.Melatonin. Taken at bedtime helps increase GH release about 150%. Gauge your level of melatonin by your age. 45-54, 1-2 mg; 55-64 2-2.5 mg; 65-74 2.5 to 5 mg; 75 and over 3.5 to 5 mg per night.
b. GABA. Take 1.5 to 3 mg at bedtime, increases GH release about 200%.
c. Vitamin D. 1,000 IU daily.
d. Amino acids. Studies show that L-lysine, L-glargine, 3 to 5 grams, taken before exercise or bedtime increases GH release by 700%!
e. Glutamine. Take 2 grams after exercise or before sleep. Research out of Louisiana State University recorded a boost in GH after study participants were given glutamine.
Some other things you can do to determine hormone levels of GH and DHEA is to get tested to see how deficient you are in them. These tests can either be blood or saliva tests and many are available online with processing at the lab who sells them. You might also want to consult an anti-aging specialist who can work out a specific anti-aging program for you. But, if you simply want to protect your bones, and regain a more youthful waistline, boosting your GH levels naturally can help significantly.
Mark Bromson, M.D.
Growth Hormone Increases Bone Formation in Obese Women, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111129092413.htm
Nearly 1 in 4 menopausal women with fractures is obese, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110325102140.htm
The Superfood Power of Goji Berries, http://www.naturalnews.com/036003_goji_berries_superfood_nutrients.html
20 Foods That Increase HGH naturally, http://anabolicmen.com/foods-that-increase-human-growth-hormone-naturally/