Archive for Weight Loss

The 5 Reasons Women Over 40
Can’t Lose Weight
– And What To Do About Them

Losing Weight Doesn't Have To Be This Hard

The moment I looked at my daughter’s graduation pictures, I knew something had to change. It was all I could do to keep from crying. Did I really look THAT fat? (Yes. I really did.)

But the feeling that settled over me that moment wasn’t one of determination. It was more like hopeless despair. Because I hadn’t just ignored the weight I’d gained over the last several years. I’d done and tried everything to get it off – and nothing worked. Diet after diet, walking, aerobics, gym membership. All came and went, and the scale still refused to budge. I just could not understand why the things that used to work when I was younger had no impact now.

Sound familiar?

Turns out there are 5 very good reasons the scale stops cooperating after you turn 40:

1. Your metabolism slows down. Your body is shifting gears away from potentially getting pregnant. It’s estimated that if your diet and activity level stays exactly the same as in your 30’s you’ll suddenly have about a 100 calorie a day surplus. Which means that you’ll gain 8 to 10 pounds every year without doing anything differently than before. Worse, the slowdown continues as you get older – so the calorie surplus and the amount of weight it causes you to gain only continue to grow as the years go by.

2. You lose muscle mass. Apparently it takes more muscle to be ready to reproduce. So after 40 your muscles literally start to slowly melt away. And since muscle burns more calories even at rest than fat, your metabolism slows even further.

3. Your hormones begin to change. We don’t want to think about that dreaded M word (menopause) but your body can start to prepare for it up to 10 years before you begin to notice the symptoms. Hormones like leptin and ghrelin (which regulate appetite), adiponectin (which regulates fat storage and energy levels) are produced at different levels than before – all causing your body to hold onto energy, store more fat, and tell you to eat more.

4. Your serotonin levels decline. Have you noticed you’re sleeping less? It’s not your imagination. Unfortunately, your body does its most efficient fat burning while you’re asleep, while it’s making repairs and adjustments based on what has happened during the day. So less sleep means – you guessed it – less fat burning.

5. You’re under more stress. Our 40’s and 50’s are the most stressful decades of our lives. Teenagers (or the “empty nest”), marital issues or divorce, career pressure, aging parents, retirement planning, health problems… all this stress leads to a hormone called cortisol. Studies show elevated levels of cortisol stimulates your appetite and causes you to crave sugary or starchy foods. It then causes this extra energy to be stored as abdominal fat.   

So yes, your body really IS working against you. So how do you fight back?

The 5 Things You Have To Do
To Lose Weight Over 40

Your body has changed, partly due to your age and partly due to the weight. If you want to fight the fat, you’ve got to work with your new body instead of against it. It’s not going to be easy – there are no easy victories in the Battle of the Bulge. But victories can be won, and they are oh so sweet. Here’s how to start fighting back:

1. Throw away your scale. Part of what’s gotten us into this mess is that we’ve lost muscle mass. We’re going to have to build some of that muscle back – and muscle weighs more than fat. So it’s likely that you can radically shift your body composition to a leaner, fit physique – and yet you may not lose a single pound. You may even gain a few in the beginning. Seeing that reflected on your scale will do nothing but discourage you. So just don’t. Instead, get a tape measure and keep track of the inches you’re losing.

After all, what’s more important – looking fit and healthy (and actually being so) or getting to an arbitrary number on your scale?

2. Build some muscle. Not big bulging bodybuilder muscles (unless you like and want that look) but you do need to build up your lean muscle mass. This is why just walking or aerobics isn’t as effective for you now as it used to be when you were younger. Get yourself some resistance bands or some light wrist and ankle weights. You don’t have to pump iron, but you do have to make your muscles work to make them grow.

3. Eat more. You heard me. The problem with most of the diets you may have tried is that if you consume too FEW calories, your body goes into “starvation mode” and lowers your metabolism even further. So don’t let that happen. Of course, what you eat matters – this isn’t permission to pig out. Stick with lean proteins and lots of fruits and veggies, and try to eat 6 small meals a day so you never feel hungry or deprived. (Protein also helps with rebuilding your muscle mass – a double benefit!)

4. Take care of yourself. You’re not doing anybody any favors by not taking time for you. Do something every day – whether it be a walk in the sunshine, meditation, a soak in the tub – something to center yourself and de-stress. And while you’re at it, be sure you’re getting the sleep you need. Whether you need a change in routine, a melatonin supplement or help from your doctor, adequate sleep is a must.

5. Get some help. The simple fact is we need a boost when it comes to dealing with the hormonal changes that are making it harder to lose weight. Over the last several years, the media has buzzed over half a dozen different “miracle” supplements. Many have some good, solid science behind their ability to influence the very hormones that are causing us problems.

But none of them work for everyone. Because every body is different, every woman has different hormone levels and different ways her body holds on to fat. The good news is there’s a very good – downright excellent – chance that one of them (or a combination of a couple) WILL work for you. It’s just a matter of finding out which one, and getting a version that’s got the quality to be effective.

So how do you figure out which supplements are most likely to help YOU? Well, you could spend hundreds of dollars trying them all. Or, you could save the time, money and frustration and fill out our short evaluation. It’s 100% free, no purchase required – and once you’ve completed it not only will the results give you some guidance but you’ll also get a nice discount should you choose to try the recommendations.





How to Take Advantage of the Many Benefits of Chia Seeds


Chia seeds have been used for their health benefits for thousands of years dating back to the time of the ancient Mayans, but it is only recently that they’ve gained public interest.

Lose weight in 2013


By Tamara Jacobi

Are you committed to weight loss and improved health for 2013? Popular New Year’s resolutions include “I want to lose 10 lbs”. “I want to eat healthier”. Sound familiar? If so, let’s make it happen! BUT, with a catch . . . let’s make it sustainable this time.

Read more

Get fit fast by “bursting”


By Tamara Jacobi 

Want to get fit but always short on time? You might be happy to hear that a short blast of intense exercise has been proven to be even better for you than extensive workouts.  Surprised? Welcome to the world of burst training, where high intensity intervals—high-speed jumping jacks, sit-ups, sprints and more—are the name of the game. The best part? Burst training means you can spend less time exercising and be fitter than ever. Too good to be true?

Read more

Skipping Meals Leads To More Carbs, Calories


A recent study by the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell has found that people who skip meals or fast are more likely to start their next meal with high-calorie carbohydrates and starches. Not only are these pesky breads and fries a natural enemy of your waistline, they cause you to eat more than you normally would during a meal.  Read more

Study Claims Eggs Have Better Protein Than Other Breakfast Options


A recent study by the Pennington Biomedical Research Center showed that eating eggs for breakfast will make you more full than other breakfast proteins found in cereal. Though the study was funded by the American Egg Board, likely the arch nemesis of the European Bagel Council, it does reaffirm previous research on higher value and lower level proteins. The most important part of this research shows that it is the quality of the protein, not the quantity, that makes you less hungry throughout your day.

The study focused on 20 obese people and researched how their group’s breakfast affected their lunch time eating. Those who ate eggs at breakfast ate significantly less at lunch and reported feeling more full than those who ate a wheat breakfast. Not only did the study measure how they felt but also the actual physical effects. Researchers found that hormones that signal hunger were considerably lower and hormones that signal satiety were considerably higher among those who had egg breakfasts.

The reason for this, according to lead researcher Dr. Nikhil Dhurandhar, is that eggs provide the highest level of biological value – meaning they contain the ten essential amino acids, while cereal had a biological value of 42. Certainly makes sense considering eggs are entirely natural while cereals are processed.

Protein is a key element in hunger because it prevents spikes in your blood sugar. Eggs are by far the most filling breakfast food while choices like lean beef, fish, tofu, and nuts make for great protein-rich day time choices. Fiber is another food that will help you feel fuller without eating more, some great fiber-rich choices include beans, pears and apples, grapefruit, and green vegetables.

Going for high value protein and fiber food choices allows you to satisfy your hunger without consuming unnecessary calories. Just another reason to go with all-natural options at every meal rather than processed food that claims to have the same levels of protein and fiber.

Why Go Raw?


By: Tamara Jacobi

As the summer approaches you might naturally be shifting your diet towards more raw foods: salads, raw fruits and veggies, smoothies, etc. Summer is a great time to consider the benefits of raw foods in your diet.  I think you may also enjoy that raw foods will do wonders for keeping your body cool as a cucumber!

Here are some of the top reasons to consider integrating more raw foods into your diet.  In the summer months, a good goal is to try to shoot for 50% of the foods on your plate each meal to be raw.  I think you’ll find this actually a fairly reasonable (and tasty!) goal.  Don’t worry, I’m not going to encourage you to be a raw food extremist, but I do highly recommend that you consider focusing on raw fruits and veggies in the summertime. 

1)    Basic Nutrition. There is a lot of evidence that shows that the simple act of cooking fruits and veggies changes the nutritional value of the food.  After a temperature of 130 degrees F many vitamins (such as Vitamin A, D, E and K) are destroyed.  Unfortunately, boiling point is 212 F, so we may be losing some valuable nutrition here.

2)    Raw foods have lots of wonderful enzymes! Enzymes help us digest our food.  Particularly as we age, enzymes are crucial for the digestive process. Specifically, they are necessary to break down food particles so they can be utilized for energy. Raw vegetables and fruits are particularly rich sources of enzymes. However, enzymes have a very specific 3-dimensional structure. Once they are heated much above 118 degrees, this structure often changes.  When you’re eating cooked veggies you’re no longer benefiting from the valuable enzymes that they may have provided in their raw form.

3)    Increased energy.  Due to the living enzymes in raw foods, many people find that they experience higher energy levels when they’re consuming raw foods.  The nutrients and enzymes are more easily digested and more easily assimilated into the bodies.  Rather than getting fatigued from breaking down hard to digest foods, raw foods deliver your body energy that is much more available to your body.

4)    Flavor! Some find that raw foods often have a fuller flavor than cooked foods. In its raw form a food often offers a stronger, more vibrant, flavor, requiring fewer additives such as salt, oils and sweeteners. When you steam or boil veggies (beets especially!) you can probably see the minerals being leached out into the water that you drain into the sink.  As you lose these valuable nutrients, your loosing a lot of flavor as well.

5)    Cool for the summer.  In the summer months you may find your body craving more raw foods.  This is a natural reaction to the increased temperatures and is your body’s way of supporting its self with keeping cool.

Want to boost your energy for the summertime! Join me for my 30 Day Nourishment Challenge: Nutritional SECRETS Revealed! This 4 week series of audio-classes is going to give every cell in your body a blast of nutrition that will boost your energy so that you can do all the things that you love!

Ready to get started with adding more raw foods into your diet? Try out this great recipe!

Basil, Lime, Avocado Soup

Serves 1

1 lime (to juice)
3 cups coconut water ( or 1.5 cups coconut water and 1.5 cups filtered water)
1 tbsp fresh ginger
1/8 teaspoon cayenne or ground chili flakes
1 small handful of basil leaves
1 large avocado or 2 small

Blend all the soup ingredients together in a blender until completely smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.


Tamara Jacobi, Certified Health Coach


Tamara Jacobi is a certified health and nutrition coach who received her training at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. She is the founder of Jungle Girl Health,, offering health coaching over the phone to individuals who are ready to feel and look their best. By using whole foods for healing and lifestyle balancing techniques, Tamara helps people understand how to heal and nourish their bodies completely.

Tamara leads an adventurous and active lifestyle, dividing her time between the Colorado Rocky Mountains and the Mexican Pacific coastline.  In Mexico, she is the owner and manager of the Tailwind jungle lodge, a certified sustainable jungle lodge and adventure tour company just north of Puerto Vallarta, Tamara also guides adventure tours for the Tailwind jungle lodge including sea kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and hiking. In her free time she spends as much time as possible playing outside. She is a passionate skier, road biker, trail runner and stand up paddle boarder.







Unhealthy Food We Should Avoid Completely


There is food that is good for you and food that is bad for you. Increase the good food, cut down on the bad food, and you’re healthier, right? Well, when it comes to foods that are high in trans fats, saturated fats, or LDL (bad cholesterol), some foods need to be cut out of your diet entirely. Even moderate amounts of these can contribute to heart problems, weight loss, and generally make you feel tired and sluggish. That also means that cutting these out of your diet will have an immediate effect on how you feel in your daily life.

Foods that have high levels of LDL, or “bad cholesterol” as your doctor calls it, is a substance found in processed meats and high fat fried meats, that builds up over time on your artery walls. Inevitably this leads to heart disease if not kept in check and steps are not taken to lower it. This means you need to cut out the processed meats like bacon, sausage, and cold cuts as well as ice cream, butter, and pork – foods that will not only contribute to cholesterol build up but slow you down during the day.

Trans fats are so bad that many cities are banning the use altogether. Unlike other fats, no amount of trans fat is good for you and it’s important to check the label of any food product to make sure it’s trans fat-free. Fast food chains are notorious for their trans fat use but other top offenders to avoid include margarine and butter spreads, pre-prepared soups, frozen food, baked products and cake mixes, chips, cereals, and candy.

Unlike trans fats, saturated fats don’t need to be completely eliminated but they definitely need to be severely limited. It is best to get your low amount of saturated fats from natural sources like salmon, beef, eggs, or nuts rather than processed food like ice cream. Some foods you should definitely avoid include butter, lard, many high fat cheeses, processed meat, and any kind of cream product.

Letting Go of Fat Phobia

ganze und halbe avocado isoliert auf weiss

By: Tamara Jacobi

As teenager my understanding was that if you eat fat, you get fat.  Straight forward enough, right?  Thus, it seemed logical that if I wanted to lose those extra pounds I should cut all the fat out of my diet, which I did, with a vengeance.  In my mind, fat was the enemy.  Luckily, through a nutritional epiphany and my studies of holistic nutrition, I now know that the fat debate is not quite as cut and dried as I once thought. In fact, by severely restricting my fat intake I was not only was I actually doing my body a great deal of harm (which has taken me many years to undo), I was actually also sabotaging my weight loss efforts!  If you’re still part of the “fat free” hype that deems all fats as equally bad it might be time to take another look at this philosophy.

We live in a nation with the largest fat-free food industry and yet we are the most overweight.  According to the fat equals fat theory does this make any sense?  The problem here is the quality of the fats we consume, not all fats are created equally. It’s crucial to be aware that some fats can do a lot of harm to our bodies and some are actually essential to our health. There is a delicate balance here of healthy fats to unhealthy fats and everyone is unique.  You need to find the balance that works best for your body (I can support you with this!)

It’s easy to get stuck in a place that I have come to call “fat phobia.” I have to admit that I have been slow to conquer this. It’s always scary to intentionally eat something that I know falls into the fat category, mainly just because the word is so strongly equated with weight gain! But it’s really important that we clear this up and begin rewiring our brains a bit, particularly if we’re ever going to win the weight loss battle.

Now is a good time to get an understanding of something called “starvation mode”. When you go on a fat free diet (or very low calorie diet, beware of extreme diets and extended juice detoxes!) your body may no longer be receiving the basic macronutrients it needs to function, and consequently it will begin preparing for a period of famine. Yes, you and I know that a famine isn’t likely to come, but the natural biology of your body doesn’t know this!  Your body is thinking that if it’s not going to be getting these important nutrients anytime soon then it better begin to store some fat. Your body also starts to inhibit the building of muscle in order to conserve energy.

There are several problems with this situation.

  •      Your body begins storing fat instead of burning it.
  •      Your body tries to stop building muscle. Muscle in your body is key for burning calories.  As you lose muscle, your metabolism drops.
  •     Your appetite hormones go crazy.  You become ravenous and you will not be able to fight cravings with will power.
  •   You’re depriving your body of nutrition! Fat is actually fuel for your brain, so depriving yourself can tamper with memory, mental clarity, focus (ADD), and many other brain functions.  For women, healthy fats also play important role in balancing hormones and menstrual cycles. A fat deficient diet often leads to dry hair, dry skin, brittle hair or skin, mood issues, digestive, redness around the eyes, deficiency in fat soluble vitamins A D E, and the already mentioned inability to lose weight.

I’m guessing you’re starting to get the picture on why not to deprive your body of fats, particularly if you’re intentionally on a diet.  So what’s the next step here?  I recommend taking some time to evaluate the fats in your diet and find the balance of healthy fats that work for you.  There are many different kinds of wonderful fats available to us and we shouldn’t be afraid!

Everyone is unique in the fats that they require and I’m ready to support you with this. Particularly if you’re looking to lose weight, or you’re simply confused about the role that fats should play in your diet I have some great recommendations that will get you started.  Be sure to check out this FREE guide to get you started with listening to your body.

For now I’m putting a spot light on one of my favorite fats, avocado! I am the jungle girl after all! We have a great avocado grove right near the Tailwind jungle lodge. Even my yellow lab Pancho loves avocados!

Also check out my favorite Guacamole Recipe here.

Tamara Jacobi, Certified Health Coach


Tamara Jacobi is a certified health and nutrition coach who received her training at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. She is the founder of Jungle Girl Health,, offering health coaching over the phone to individuals who are ready to feel and look their best. By using whole foods for healing and lifestyle balancing techniques, Tamara helps people understand how to heal and nourish their bodies completely.

Tamara leads an adventurous and active lifestyle, dividing her time between the Colorado Rocky Mountains and the Mexican Pacific coastline.  In Mexico, she is the owner and manager of the Tailwind jungle lodge, a certified sustainable jungle lodge and adventure tour company just north of Puerto Vallarta, Tamara also guides adventure tours for the Tailwind jungle lodge including sea kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and hiking. In her free time she spends as much time as possible playing outside. She is a passionate skier, road biker, trail runner and stand up paddle boarder.


Calciology-More Science, less weight


Did you know most weight loss fads on the internet have very little science behind them? Take, for example, HCG. I saw a segment on the Dr. Oz show a while ago spotlighting people who paid up to $800 for a 12 week HCG program.

Dr. Oz summed it up by calling it “risky.” After all, he said, there is absolutely no science showing it works.

Yet there is something that not only has a good bit of science behind it as a weight loss supplement, it’s something your body desperately needs.

Almost none of us get the calcium we need from our diets alone. Studies show this could be one reason we have difficulty losing weight.

The Calciology formula was designed to maximize calcium absorption. Yet together, the ingredients constitute a formula that has some compelling science behind its ability to help you lose weight:

■Calcium: multiple studies have shown that higher calcium intakes lead to weight loss, perhaps because calcium consumption favors burning rather than storing fat

■Vitamin D: higher levels of vitamin D going into a diet has been shown to predict greater success with weight loss, especially in losing abdominal fat. In another study women taking calcium and vitamin D were significantly less likely to gain weight, and lost more weight than women on a placebo.

■Magnesium: without proper magnesium, you won’t’ have the energy to exercise as your cells can’t burn the fuel they need without it. It also helps the body absorb and utilize the nutrients you consume and ensures proper insulin function – improper insulin response is often a main culprit in weight gain.

■Vitamin C: research done at Arizona State University found that people with higher levels of vitamin C in their blood are correspondingly slimmer around the waist with better BMI and less fat in the blood. This was found to be because higher levels of vitamin C in the blood meant subjects burned fat at a faster rate during exercise.

■Vitamin K: again, insulin response is directly tied to weight levels. Studies have found that supplementing with vitamin K can improve insulin response within the first week.

■Lysine: It’s essential to the process of converting fatty acids into energy.

Quite frankly, there are very few weight loss supplements with this much science behind them.