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Posted on: May 26 2015

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The basics of weight loss will never change – energy out needs to exceed energy in. We need to eat a healthy wholefood diet that excludes sugar and maintains healthy levels of good fats and lean proteins. If your diet is at least half full of vegetables, then you’re on the right track.

 Most weight loss programs today such as the Paleo diet and low carb diets promote very low carbohydrate intake. This can help with weight loss, however ruling carbs out altogether can put you at risk of missing out on the crucial nutrients such as fibre, magnesium, zinc and B vitamins. These nutrients themselves are essential to healthy weight management, so be sure to include some healthy unprocessed carbohydrates in your diet for the long term.

If these basics of weight loss are not bringing you reasonable and timely results, it is worth considering other factors that prevent the body from losing fat.

One of the key drivers of weight gain is stress. Not just because stress can led to poor food choices, eating take away meals and chomping on chocolate and sugary caffeinated drinks, but because it has the capacity to disrupt the hormones insulin and oestrone.

Insulin is raised when the stress hormone cortisol is high. The body is built to survive stressful periods of time by storing fat. Think of hunter gather times… if you’re being chased by a lion, there’s no time to shop and cook, so the body makes sure it stores as much energy as possible (as fat) so it can survive the coming days or weeks that food may not be available. Great in tribal times, not so much in 2015.

So if you think stress may be stopping you lose weight, you might want to investigate your hormone balance with your naturopath, and start managing your stress better!


  • Meditate daily
  • Choose to accept your emotions and thoughts that come up in response to what is happening in your life – then you can choose your response without activating the stress response (read more about this under ACT)
  • Get 7-9 hours sleep each night
  • Exercise 5 times/week for at least  40 minutes, including 3 decent weight bearing sessions
  • Eat unprocessed wholefoods in small portions throughout the day to maintain glucose delivery to the brain and even out your energy levels and mood.
  • Include small portions of wholegrain carbohydrates: brown rice, basmati or wild rice, oats and bran as found in untoasted muesli and porridge, and wholegrain breads.
  • Plenty of fresh vegetables, especially leafy greens.
  • Quality protein: lean red meat, chicken, fish, eggs, soybean products, nuts & seeds, legumes.
  • Reduce stimulants (alcohol, caffeine, sugar, refined carbohydrate foods such as white bread and pasta, biscuits, lollies, chocolate, non prescription drugs)
  • Drink at least 2 litres of water each day: add fresh mint, lemon or lime.

Meal Ideas

  • Sandwiches with tuna or salmon, quality lean red meat or chicken, avocado, protein spread (ABC spread), cottage cheese, hommus dip
  • Protein smoothies with protein powder or at least an egg, milk (dairy/soy/rice/almond), half a banana, berries
  • Nuts & seed mix (Raw is best. Avoid roasted, salted nuts & peanuts)
  • Hommus dip, dahl, cottage cheese or a good quality nut spread on vegie sticks or rye crackers
  • “Meat and 3 Veg” (lean meat)
  • Yoghurt snacks (natural with no sugar added is best – add your own nuts or fruit)


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Jane has written a book for anyone going through medical treatment for cancer. It outlines which natural therapies are helpful in reducing the side effects of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and hormone therapy.

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