a picture of a white and bluebowl of kale and chicken chilli

How much protein do I need to eat for weight loss & hormone balancing?.

The role of protein in weight loss & hormonal balancing. How much protein do I need to eat for weight loss & hormonal balancing.

I describe protein as the building blocks of our body. It plays a part in so many different essential functions in the body. Including building lean muscle tissue, making hormones, enzymes, healing and repairing your body and cell development. And of course the purpose of the blog is weight loss & hormone balancing. Pretty important stuff right? By not giving our body the correct amounts it’s easy to see how we can suffer as a result! And our body, your bestest friend is pretty good at giving you little clues or breadcrumbs if she is not happy. So the question is how much protein do I need to eat for weight loss & hormonal balance.

Meat V veggie protein

So let’s break down the nutrition jargon. When we eat protein we break it down to usable pieces called amino acids(Think carbohydrates are broken down into a useable form, glucose-sugar) There are 20 amino acids, 9 essential and the 11 the body can make the other 11. Animal sources contain all of the 20 amino acids and are commonly known as complete proteins. Plant proteins are known as incomplete, which means that they are missing at least one of the essential amino acids. They still absolutely have value and don’t forget all the other amazing health benefits. Fibre, antioxidants, abundant amounts of vitamins and minerals. I personally aim to eat 50% vegetarian a week and love the challenge of getting a wide array of veggie sources. Thinking outside the box with cooking and recipes is also fun and I love to pass this knowledge onto my clients and friends.

Sources of veggie protein

Some examples of plant-based foods rich in protein.

  • Nuts & seeds.
  • Bean & Pulses.
  • Some fruits like avocado
  • Peas & seeded veggies.
  • Hemp.
  • Soy and tempeh.
  • Quinoa, whole wheat, oats, amaranth & buckwheat.

Sources of animal protein

  • Red Meat
  • Poultry
  • Eggs
  • Dairy
  • Fish & shellfish

Protein -its Thermic value & why its pretty cool!

When you eat , some of the calories from that particular food are used for the purpose of digestion and metabolism of that food.

This is often referred to as called the thermic effect of food (TEF).

We are not entirely sure of exact amounts as expert opinions vary. But what they can seem to agree on is that protein has a higher thermic effect around 30 % compared to  carbohydrates 10 %(estimate) and fat 3%(estimate)

What does that mean for me Michelle? Breaking it down it simply means, if we look at protein rich meals such as my Turkey , bean and kale chilli? And look back to the numbers above -Thermic effect of 30% for protein, would that 100 calories of protein only end up as 70 usable calories, and the other 30 will be used for digestion & metabolism of the protein..

How much protein a day should I be eating for hormone balancing & weight loss?

How much protein should I be eating for weight loss & hormonal balancing. There is no simple answer I am afraid. It comes down to you as as an individual. When I am assessing a client’s food diary there is a number of questions I take into account. All of these questions will make a huge difference to the amount of protein they may need to achieve their goals of weight loss and balancing hormones.

  • Their age.
  • Their exercise activity level.
  • How are their stress levels.
  • How well is their sleep.
  • Weight.
  • Recovering from any illness or surgery.
  • Pregnant, postpartum & breastfeeding or trying for a baby.
  • Breadcrumbs such as skin, hair and nails health. How are their periods? Tiredness, indigestion or any gut issues. Cravings and intolerances.

Government guidelines

I have included a link from the British nutrition society which gives their recommendations on protein intake. But take into consideration all of the questions above. I myself aim for about 1.2-1.5 grams per kg of bodyweight for my weight loss goals, exercise goals and role in balancing my hormones. .

https://www.nutrition.org.uk/nutritionscience/nutrients-food-and-ingredients/protein.html?start=2

What’s the bottom line when it comes to adding protein for weight loss & balancing hormones.

I believe protein, carbohydrates and fats all have an essential role in the body. So please do not start cutting out carbohydrates and fats just because we have heard all the wonderful jobs that protein does. . rather look at your plating up and allow it to represent your goals. Each food group deserves its spot on your plate. So let’s start being more mindful and aware of our plate. Let it be a representation of our future self and all our wonderful health goals. Here is one of my super easy and tasty protein and fibre rich meals. I can t wait to share more in my new Ebook which will be available in spring. x Michelle

Turkey, bean & kale chilli

  • 400 grams of lean turkey breast mince
  • Tin of kidney beans
  • 1 packet of kale
  • 1 big onion
  • 8 cloves of garlic
  • teaspoon of paprika, turmeric, cumin.
  • 1 carton of passata
  • Cup of veggie stock
  1. Chop roughly the onion & garlic
  2. Saute the onions and garlic in a teaspoon of coconut oil.
  3. Add the spices for 30 secs.
  4. Add the turkey mince and brown.
  5. Once browned add the stock and passata.
  6. Gently simmer for about 20 mins.
  7. Add the kale and simmer for another 5 mins.
  8. Add the kidney beans in at the end and serve.
food is medicine amd how it impacts stress, our hormones and weight

How stress impacts your hormones, mood & weight.

Hands up if your stress hormones are running the show right now!? Would you benefit from understanding how stress impacts your hormones, mood & weight.

As women, some of us mums, multi- tasking, juggling work, kids, school applications, Christmas, will there even be a bloody Christmas!?, family & relationship dramas. Some of you may even be dealing with the pain of loss in these uncertain circumstances. So it can feel like we are being slapped in the face from every direction with some form of stress.  As a result it can seem like life is literally being sucked out of us, would you agree? Or is that just my experience 😊 So again, I ask “Are your hormones running the show right now?” Let’s talk about, how stress impacts your hormones, mood and weight.

As a result the impact stress has on us as women is truly mind blowing! But on the flip side, it is an area we can achieve some serious results. If we choose to take back the control and make that investment in ourselves. For instance let us choose not to let stress run the show. The show being our lives.

How Stress impacts your hormones, mood & weight.

For a lot of women, I work with it, guilt can be one of those top stressors.

  • The guilt that your self-care should even be a priority ( I call this my mom guilt).
  • The guilt of spending money on your Health & wellness in a time of uncertainty for many.
  • The guilt of spending precious time on your life goals.

I know from experience if you do not make your Physical & Mental health a priority eventually you will be forced to… Your wellness should be a priority, not a novelty and I will give you one reason why!

Because if you fall apart everything and everyone who relies on you will also suffer, including you!!.

As women, some of us mums, we tend to be placed at the end of the self care list. But what if we decided to change the conversation in our head? It can be a real game changer. It could be that simple step to living a stress reduced/managed (you can see I don’t say stress -free!) life.

How? Tell me Michelle how do I get to a space of feeling happy and confidence in myself? Learn the tools to avoid letting stress impact your hormones, mood and weight.

  1. Firstly, Lets try Focusing on what we can change and not giving space in our precious life for what we have no control over! I always suggest no more then 2- 3 clear actions goals at a time. This is how I work with my clients allowing them to be consistent, taking the overwhelm out of the equation and see the changes these smaller mini goals have on the bigger picture.  end result being not less stress run the show. For instance I have a beautiful client whose long term goal is to manage her horrific Pmt (she has really low moods and salt cravings at least 2 weeks of the month) Salt can be an indicator of adrenal fatigue caused by stress. And also she has gained a lot of weight around the middle and not so much the rest of her body. Also an indicator of high cortisol as a result of blood sugar issues and stress. Both of which impact each other. We have broken these down into 3 mini goals a month.

How we broke one big goal into 3 manageable mini goals.

  • Stress management techniques which we do weekly to identify stressors and how best to manage them. Identifying stressors and barriers plays a big role in achieving goals and should never be skipped. I also do this as part of my group programmes as part of a workshop and have had great client results.
  • Portion sizes to ensure she has the right proportion of carbs, protein and good fats so we can manage blood sugar, which will reduce cravings and belly fat through balancing insulin and cortisol production.
  • In her case we reduced the amount of cardio during the second half of her cycle which was adding to her weight gain( excessive exercise can cause more cortisol adding to weight gain in some cases)and swapped for more strength work and yoga.

  • Second, Think about Nourishment not deprivation.  Food is medicine, I will repeat this again FOOD IS MEDICINE. eating cyclically, using the power of nutrition to support the 4 phases of your cycle. Hormones need different nutrients during each phase. Try adding some simple easy to find foods into your diet can have massive direct impacts with your mood, weight and energy. I have seen first- hand these small changes make to women, their confidence, and relationships. It is a beautiful process, and I am so honored to a part of that.
  • Third, Embrace Progress not perfection. If we try to make small consistent changes to achieve the big life changing results. This is what I teach my 1-1 and group clients on my Nourish-Move-Thrive Programme. Balancing hormones to lose weight, achieve more stable moods, body confidence and get rid of any pesky Pmt symptoms holding you back from living your best life.

Do you want to learn more about cycle syncing nutrition for weight loss and balancing hormones ? click here https://bit.ly/3pPyeHu

Some of the conditions increased stress can manifest itself as

  • Bloating, increasing the waist up a dress size.
  • Gut issues (especially Ibs, colitis, any inflammatory conditions).
  • Increased belly fat (especially if exercising your tushy off but you’re not getting the desired results.
  • Excess tiredness even though you may be sleeping well. Or maybe you are not sleeping well and waking up a lot during the night due to anxious, racing thoughts and worries!
  • Low libido which may be having an impact on your confidence and relationship.
  • Headaches and migraines which I have seen on the increase and I have just helped a client this week with and have had great results.

It is so important to remember and be mindful that we are all wonderfully unique. Stress manifests very differently from one person to the next. To summarise everything I have said would be Planning ahead with some clear action though Nutrition, movement, and mindset it is possible to live a life perhaps not stress free, but more balanced, full of body confidence, free from the chains of unbalanced hormones and excess weight holding you back.

My top 5 foods during periods of extreme stress

  • Wholegrains such as Spelt, buckwheat, Oats, amaranth. Packed full of B vitamins essential during times of healing and crisis.
  • Green leafy veggies which are an abundant source of fibre but also magnesium. B vitamins and magnesium both  play a big role in releasing  energy from food. Magnesium is known as natures tranquilizer. It is a great supplement to take before bed. Try 300-500mg of magnesium glycinate an hour before bed for a good night of ZZZzzzzzz’s.
  • Beans and pulses are a great vegetarian source of protein and fibre. Protein plays a big role  in hormone production and weight loss, the fibre also aids digestion and facilitates weight loss.

Are you ready to invest in yourself and be the best version of you?

Are you ready to invest in yourself?  

A helping hand I would like to offer everyone is a free 20-minute online consultation to anyone looking for some guidance on where to start on your wellness journey. As a result I hope you have started to understand the connection on how stress impacts your hormones, mood and weight. Always remember my lovely do not suffer in silence.  To book follow the link and pick an available slot.

https://nourishmovethrive.as.me/

Michelle xx

Http://www.newbodyandsoul.com/contact

Women feeling powerful on learning about exercising for each phase of her menstrual cycle

Exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle.

Why would you benefit from exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle? Have you noticed how one day your sprinting through the park with endless energy? The next you have to drag yourself out for even a short stroll with the dog.

That is our hormones are work. It really is like a monthly dance. Each week playing a different tune. A slow waltz, a sexy tango, or an Irish jig. But what if you had the monthly dance schedule ahead of time ?  You could be well prepped for each dance filled with confidence that you knew the steps to each one with the perfect outfit to match?

In other words, by tracking our cycle and understanding each phase (Download my free planner and tracker to get started on discovering yours) you can be prepared for what each week brings.

Once you have discovered your pattern you can work on those weight loss goals, strength building exercises that bring the full benefit of working with your hormones and achieve your goals. Exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle really is power to women, and we need to be taking full advantage of this knowledge.

What others are saying about exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle

“Now, researchers at the University of North Carolina have shown that one stage of the menstrual cycle heightens fat burning, while another increases carbohydrate metabolism.” (quote from of peak performance article ) 

The menstrual phase

Your hormones are at their lowest. This is time for low impact activity. Taking the stress from your adrenals. Yoga, walks in nature, more flow based tai chi, Pilates movement, resistance bands, stair climbing, bodyweight strength moves.  High impact workouts during this phase are draining on the body and taxing on the adrenals. Remember if the adrenals feel under the pump, an influx of stress hormones are bound to be close. And as we know high cortisol Levels have been linked to an increase in belly fat. 

The follicular phase

You will start to notice an increase in energy once your period ends and your heading into the follicular phase. An increase in Oestrogen is what leads to the rise in energy so it’s the perfect time for more high endurance strength activity. As I have said use your body as a guide. She will tell you if you are listening for the power of exercise for each phase of your menstrual cycle. Oestrogen strengthens the effect of insulin carb storing hormone) meaning carbs are better tolerated and muscle is more easily built at this stage.

This is the time for Hiit work and more endurance yoga work. The pre-ovulatory spike of testosterone also makes it an excellent time for building muscle. Get the weight out ladies. And no you won’t end up like arnie but you will get the toned lean body most of us strive for. This is the power held in exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle.

The ovulatory phase

After we ovulate, we get another little spike in oestrogen, and progesterone is on the rise.  This leads again to an energy and confidence spike. This is a fantastic time to try some team sports and activities. Bootcamps, boxing are two I enjoy and are a good mix of cardio and strength work. It is also the best time for trying new things, as we are more than likely to stick to it if our experience is good. Again this is a time Carbohydrates are better tolerated according to recent studies. It is a time that these 2 hormones help to burn fat as fuel. So think heart raising moves. Hiking, spinning, sprint work, hill runs.

The luteal phase

Hormones can take a sharp dip here especially towards then end of the luteal phase. This can lead to low energy, mood changes, cravings and any other Pmt symptoms you experience. Progesterone in the luteal phase also decreases the body’s sensitivity to insulin and carbohydrate metabolism. Including lean protein, goods fats, and starchy vegetables such as pumpkin, and squash to keep cravings at bay.

It may also be best sticking to lower intensity training during this time especially towards the end just before your period starts. Light cardio or bodyweight session, especially if you are particularly susceptible to fatigue and depression during PMS. Empowerment is about working with your body, not against it. If your energy is there then go for it. But as the luteal phase comes to an end you will feel the drop in energy so listen out for the clues.

Vary your workouts & tap into the power of exercising for each phase of your menstrual cycle.

It is important to be smart with this information. It is a guide, as am I. It’s also important to listen to your own body and her breadcrumbs. Yes, it’s helpful to know which half of your cycle may produce better results from different exercises but be mindful of limitations and ask for advice when needed.

This means not pushing yourself further than your body wants. And aiming to be injury free.

Both cardio and strength work have amazing health benefits. So be sure to get a mix of both through the month to get the results you desire.  This is how I work with my Personal training and Nutrition clients in my Nourish-Move -thrive 90 day programme. Please do not waste time on the “Throw the spaghetti against the wall approach”. Have a plan peeps and get the results you deserve. I hope I have given you some direction to get started and if you would like more hands on help and support please check out my 1-1 and group fitness packages at .

Ready to invest in yourself this lockdown.

Join me over on Instagram where I share lots of tips around food, mindset and exercise to help you bring balance to wherever it is needed most.Then let’s set some positive intentions for this month and make a positive from this whole situation. I look forward to seeing you. Http://www.Instagram.com/newbodyandsoulmom

Have a great week my lovelies x

Michelle

picture of avocado and eggs on toast

Confused as to which magnesium supplement you should you be taking ?

What magnesium is needed for?

Magnesium is known in the health & wellness space as Natures tranquilizer. It has absolutely been a staple of mine over the last few years. Although for different reasons as my goals shifted over the years, from improving my fertility, to anxiety support and also in my training for more efficient exercise recovery. It has so many amazing benefits and is one of those supplements I always recommend to my clients on any of my hormone balancing & weight loss programs. Are you confused as to which magnesium supplement you should be taking Or even if you need a magnesium supplement?

Why supplement magnesium?

With phase one of my mastering your hormones  program we are addressing Blood sugar issues. It could be cravings & belly fat, up and down moods, anxiety affecting both relationships at home and work, sleep issues, weight and yes even confidence. All which magnesium has a particularly important role. Unfortunately, the quality of our food has changed and is not as abundant in minerals due to poor soil quality, and the increase of more processed refined foods. And of course, with all that is happening in the world around us. The increase of stress in our life, more working mums in the workplace. Which places a burden on women as well I understand, being a mum to 2 preschoolers and running my own business.  Therefore, I do recommend some supplementation on my programs to help support the body.

Which magnesium supplement is right for me?

Here is a list

  1. Magnesium Glycinate is very calming. Best taken at night about 2 hours before beds. It is a very absorbable source and great for stress, anxiety, insomnia. I am taking this one myself at night. 300mg before bed. ZZZZZZzzz
  2. Magnesium malate is great for exercise recovery and sore muscles. So if you are training a lot and not recovering well. Also good for energy or issues such as chronic fatigue. Best taken in the morning.
  3. Magnesium citrate is a good readily absorbable form but can cause loose stools so it’s one I have used when clients are having issues with constipation.
  4. Magnesium taurate is often used to help healthy blood sugar regulation. Often used to treat high blood pressure and High blood sugar.
  5. Magnesium L-threonate is often used for its potential benefits with the brain. It may help manage certain brain issues, such as depression and age-related memory loss.
  6. Magnesium oxides tend to be the least absorbable and often are cheaper so keep this in mind when comparing supplements. Its sometimes used to treat constipation or heartburn but not great if your looking to raise your magnesium levels.

What food sources can I get magnesium from?

The rda for magnesium is about 320 mg for women.

  • Beans such as edamame are a great source and a tasty snack
  • Your green leafy are packed full of magnesium and calcium. The darker the better.
  • Nuts & seeds which are also packed with good fats for hormonal support.
  • Whole grains such as whole wheat and oats.
  • Dark chocolate(yes even some 70% plus dark choc is a great source and I keep this treat for my luteal phase when those cravings tend to hit just before your monthly period.

Do I need a more detailed Nutrition program?

So, peeps hopefully you feel a little more armed with knowledge allowing to make more informed decisions. And I will ask again… Are you confused about which magnesium supplement you should be taking? Hopefully the answer is now no 🙂 Use all supplements with caution especially when on medication. You are individual, as are your goals and health requirements. Always get professional advice from a qualified practitioner such as myself.

Would like to dig a little deeper ? Are you struggling with hormonal issues or weight you cannot shift no matter how much you exercise. It sounds like my 3-month mastering your hormones and weight loss program may be your next step ?

A step by step programme which works on helping you to understand your body better and work with her not against. Nourishing nutrition, energising exercise and lifestyle changes that we work on month by month together. Need to know if its right for you? Then please get in touch and let’s book in a discovery call today.

For monthly tips and recipes on weight loss and hormone balancing be sure to sign up at the bottom of the page.

Go forth and discover your hormonal super powers gorgeous ladies.

Michelle xx

picture of avocado and eggs on toast
Healthy lifestyle snack on table
healthy food buffet representing how food influences balanced hormones helping to melt belly fat

How happy hormones will melt away your belly fat and get you in flow

In this series over the coming weeks I will be talking weight loss, confidence, bloating, blood sugar, and all the day to day factors influencing our weight. This is how I work with about 90% of my clients. But more importantly each of them has different stories. By listening to their body’s breadcrumbs (we learn these through a 4 page detailed questionnaire), I help identify the areas they need to be focusing on. This allows them to work in harmony with their body and not against. We want to create flow within our bodies, a state of balance and harmony. When our hormones are happy, our weight is happy, our confidence is off the chart and ladies this is where magic happens . Lets dig a little deeper and discover how happy hormones will melt away your belly fat and get you in flow. Have you noticed any breadcrumbs in your life? perhaps some clear signs your body is trying to tell you?

Weight is just the tip of the iceberg

It’s important to realise that weight loss is never about the weight itself. The word weight loss represents the top of the iceberg, what is lurks underneath in the dark will be the decider, where the most good or most damage can happen. Weight represents a vision, a state, or a certain feeling to a woman. As females we are deeply intuitive creatures where things have a deeper meaning. We do not just want to lose weight for the sake of weight, do we?

My reasons

When I reflect on my reasons, it was because I wanted to feel confident and beautiful walking down the aisle next to my sis on her big day. It was because as a women’s coach and Nutritionist I wanted to be a role model to other working mums. Where let us be honest we tend to place ourselves at the back of the self-care shopping line. Ladies we need to be at the top of that line, we are the drivers in most families. If we do not look after us, then who will look after them?!   Take a minute to really have a think about what you want to achieve this week, this month, this year? Are you willing to take action now and not live the same life twice?

How I work with my strong mama tribe

When I speak about weight loss, I mention sustainable, realistic weight loss that serves a purpose- brings us into flow. I am talking about that feeling women including myself at some point have had, of resignation, of acceptance that this must be how it is now, a body that does not feel like it is mine. A body your just not familiar or comfortable in. That can be weight, especially belly fat (can be hormone and stress related), bloating, water retention, mood swings, even diminished or low libido. Because let’s be honest how we feel about ourselves and our body spills into all areas of our life.

An exercise for you to complete

Have a back to what you wrote earlier on what you would like to achieve. What other areas would it impact if you achieved these? Your relationship, you confidence?

The disconnected body- getting into flow

 I am a huge advocate of the beautiful strong confident body. What this describes can be individual to you.  It’s a body you feel confident in, you feel empowered and positive, allowing you to get on with…Living your best Life.

 A lot of women I speak to are dis- connected from their bodies, killing themselves in the gym, and under eating. In addition, their stressed because they are not getting results. Worse still they gain weight, adding to the mountains of stress they already have- In between meetings, kids’ tantrums, washing and all the other endless lists…

Poo & Period signs

Now hear me out! You may be wondering what has weight loss, periods and poo got in common?  Well ladies let me tell you A LOT. Our bodies do not work the same way as men (no 1 we do not have a penis) so why are we following all of these ridiculous diets that just work against your body. Starving ourselves, fasting (which works for some but not all women and has shown to be more successful with men) cardio workouts(can actually make you gain weight if your not careful).

Action Step for How happy hormones will melt away your belly fat and get you in flow

  1. Balance your Blood sugar
    STOP STARVING YOURSELF LADIES.. A state of flow- so happy hormones, happy weight, high energy comes from nourishment not starvation. Our body works like a beautiful orchestra, if one of those areas is out of tune it will through the whole system out. So forget weight loss, pain free periods, or energy to burn.

3 steps to take control right now

Include lean protein with each meal

You can include specific protein foods for each of your 4 phases to get the additional benefits of supporting your hormones.(Download my free worksheet to get you started) This helps to increase the hormone glucagon the fat immobilising hormone and give insulin a break(fat storing hormone). It also keeps your energy and concentration levels balanced. If your blood sugar is out of whack it eventually will lead to issues with your adrenals( stress response) and the domino effect continues.
Leading to weight gain, increased belly fat, low moods & low libido= Not a state of flow(No magic).

Do not consume any coffee before breakfast

Caffeine causes a stress response in the body and even worse on an empty stomach-its a stimulant, as is sugar. So when our body is stressed it reacts by releasing stress hormones. Now this is fine now and again. But if we are hammering our body from every direction with all forms of stress- hiit classes, environmental stress, over drinking, excess caffeine and sugar. This eventually takes its toll. Early adrenal fatigue signs include weight gain, depression, anxiety, and ongoing tiredness, only a few of the tell tale signs.

Eat a rainbow

What does your plate look like? Beige looking ?, or full of beautiful colours that scream eat me you? Aim to fill half of your plate with vegetables all colours of the rainbow. Especially foods from the brassica family. Kale, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage. You may not know this but our fat cells cling to toxins. And our body will cling to fat cells. Not very helpful to our increasing waist line, eh. So if your pounding the pavements, but not paying attention to your plate and not getting the results you feel you should be getting then its time to set a new course of direction, right?! By eating these foods you are supplying your liver with the nutrients it needs to detoxify, old hormones, last nights wine, basically everything we ingest. By supporting our poor workhorse of the body-the liver we are helping to prevent a backlog of toxins adding to our list of goal breakers.

What next?

I have armed you with 3 small actions to get you results, now. Remember being consistent will reap the benefits. If you would like more support on your weight loss, hormone balancing journey then get in touch today, no more holding you back from the life you should be living. Take massive action today and put yourself to the front of the self care line.

If you would like to take the next step why not jump on my 30 day hormone balancing weight loss programme. Email Michelle@newbodyandsoul.com for your free 30 minute discovery call.

Take care xx

Michelle