I have Canada on my mind – and it’s not just because I’m over here for a couple of weeks, but also because I have so many women on my programme from the Northern Hemisphere who are coping with colder temperatures and short days. But Canada is the home of powerful obesity and weight loss research that is important for us to know about as we move through menopause and beyond.
MyMT™ women join me from all around the world and I love connecting all of us in my private coaching community as they work through my 12 week programmes. As three of them travel from the United Kingdom to New Zealand for their ‘summer’ holiday, I’m hoping that they will enjoy the odd dip in a cool, New Zealand lake or the sea. You see, if they do, then they will be helping to activate powerful genes that help to reduce the unhealthy white fat that builds up around our diaphragm and belly as we transition through menopause and activate the more healthy brown fat instead.
It’s why I was out walking yesterday in the cold at stunning Lake Louise in Canada. I’m visiting this beautiful region in Alberta, because my son is a competitive skier and yesterday it was time to leave the ski boots behind and walk along the trail instead. But there was also a purpose to this and in my private coaching community I told them a little story about brown fat and the powerful strategies that activate this healthy fat and turns down the unhealthy white fat that builds up as we age.
My private coaching community is full of hundreds of women just like you. When women come into either of my programmes, which are on sale for you this month only, MyMT™ women get to read my posts which are all targeted to the specific information that we should be having as we move through menopause. It is so frustrating to me that many women are taking so many expensive supplements and going on all sorts of diets that are not necessarily evidenced for us in our mid-life years and beyond. My aim is to change that and I’m so grateful to the women who join me not only in the MyMT 12 week online programmes (ON SALE NOW so click through below), but in my private coaching community too.
All of you ladies who join me from Australia are going through a tough time at present and I feel a bit guilty writing this post from the cold of Lake Louise in Canada and sharing it with all of you lovelies in Australia and New Zealand who are battling the summer heat and in Australia, the fires. But for those of you who are thinking of joining me this month in my 12 week Transform Me weight loss programme or my 12 week symptom reduction programme called Circuit Breaker, I just wanted to give you a little bit or insight into how my coaching helps you at this time of life. This is additional to the 12 week programme in your member area on the website.
When it comes to understanding weight loss, yes, you need to be sleeping all night and changing your nutrition to suit menopause, but you also need to understand that to reduce hot flushes as well as add years to your life, then being a bit cold matters.
When I read about the new research that has been undertaken in Quebec, Canada on the benefits of being cold, it made so much sense.
This is because when I lectured in sport and exercise science, I always taught that exercising in the cold increases the metabolic rate of the body. This is called cold-activated thermo-genesis and it increases our energy output and calorie burning. Athletes who train and compete in the cold need a lot of food to replace the excess energy that they burn.
But in those days when I was lecturing, the research hadn’t gone far enough as to why cold-therapy is important to us and how it helps our metabolism. So a shout-out to the researchers in Quebec.
They found that exercising outside in the cold and lowering our temperature by only 1-2 degrees, stimulates the growth of healthy brown fat. This type of fat is metabolically active because it is rich in mitochondria.
You’ve heard me talk about these wonderful organelles before – your mitochondria are the ‘energy powerhouse of your cell’ where oxygen and fats and glucose are taken to turn into energy. The more mitochondria we have, the more energy we have and the more fat we ‘burn’. If our mitochondria aren’t functioning very well, then we don’t function very well either. We feel tired, sore and un-healthy. Longevity researchers also know that our mitochondrial health is important for our improved health as we age and I talk a lot about this in my programmes and in my live events too (If you are in the United Kingdom, then please check and see if I am coming your way – go to the EVENTS page on the website).
The amount of mitochondria-rich brown fat decreases with age and as we move through menopause it mingles with white fat and spreads out around our abdomen. And don’t worry, the only way to determine your ratio of brown fat to white fat is to have this measured by a physiologist or have an MRI or similar, so you may never know what your ratio’s are. But what we need to do is try to activate brown fat as we age and researchers from a Quebec University now better understand that we can stimulate more brown fat mitochondria by being out in the cold and exercising in the cold as well.
As women in menopause, it pays to be cold for some parts of our day – and I don’t mean hypo-thermia (the dangerous drop in core temperature that can leave you unconscious), but I do mean trying to lower your temperature to beat the heat and activate brown fat thermo-genesis. Especially those of you living in Australia or New Zealand or any other Southern Hemisphere country at the moment as you are in summer.
When we start to shiver when we are cold, our metabolic rate is increased due to the shivering which is the body’s attempt to produce heat. As such, higher oxygen consumption is required. Because of this, heart rate is increased making the heart work faster to provide the body with oxygen. This results in not only stimulating healthy brown fat production, but increases our metabolic rates during rest as well. This is important for weight loss, because as we move through menopause, we lose muscle density, so our metabolism naturally declines with age. If you have a sedentary job and you can’t exercise because you feel exhausted and have sore joints, then your metabolism can down-shift faster too. That’s why swimming is good for you [Theodorou & Kabir, 2019], and of course knowing what to do to turn around your sore joints, become more active and feel healthy and energetic again. It’s why I have a bonus module for you in the MyMT programmes called ‘Restore your Joyful Joints’.
What I was explaining to women on the programmes, who are in the Northern Hemisphere, was that if they can get outside and walk for their exercise in the cold then this helps to activate the healthy brown fat helping them to lose weight. Doing this regularly also helps to increase our life-span. As healthy ageing researcher Dr David Sinclair mentions in his book, ‘Lifespan: Why we age and why we don’t have to’ (David Sinclair, PhD)
“when we experience cold thermo-genesis often enough, especially when we are younger, our longevity genes get the stress they need to order up some additional healthy brown fat. The mechanism for this is the same as that evoked by calorie restriction and intermittent fasting.”
A few goosebumps is a now a good thing. 🙂
For those of you sweating in the heat in the Southern Hemisphere, then you need to find ways to get cool in your day too.
In both of the MyMT™ programmes which are on my January SALE, I have Hot Flush Management modules and in these webinars I teach women how to reduce their core temperature using a number of different strategies, including changing their diet to reduce heat as well. Walking in barefeet as much as you can is one of these strategies. The palms of our hands and the soles of our feet have numerous blood vessels in them, so getting these regions cold helps with cooling.
⛷ If you live in Canada or the USA or the UK or Scotland or Ireland (and yes, I have women on my programmes from all of these countries), then no excuses – get outside and walk in the cold when you can. If you live ‘down-under’ then head for a cool lake or the sea as well. All that colder activity helps to stimulate your wonderful brown fat helping you to manage your menopause weight loss too.
When you are ready, I hope that you can join me on my January Intake – use the promo code JANUARY20 to access your $50 discount and there are monthly payments as well. When you come on board I will support you every step of the way, not only with my research, but also with my own experience turning around all of my symptoms and losing my menopause weight. I can’t wait for you to join me.
da Silva, P., Hernández-Saavedra, D., White, J. & Stanford, K. (2019). Cold and Exercise: Therapeutic Tools to Activate Brown Adipose Tissue and Combat Obesity. Biology, (8), 9, 1-29.
Sinclair, D. (2019). Lifespan: Why we age and why we don’t have to. Amazon Books Publ.
Theodorou, M. & Kabir, R. (2019). Exploring the effects of cold-water swimming on an obese population: A systematic review. Journal of Applied Sports Sciences,02, 1-19.