Maintaining Sexual Function in Later Life
Presented by Mike Perring at the 2009 British Longevity Society, London download>
Testosterone’s Effects on Anxiety: Androgens and Mood
Presented by Mike Perring at the 2006 EMAA Conference download>
Patients with Sexual Problems treated with Hormonal Treatments
Presented by Mike Perring and the 2007 AAMS Seminar, Paris . download>
Food and Sex: Plants Hormones and Herbs
Presented by Mike Perring at the 2006 Food and Health Forum, The Royal Society of Medicine, London download>
Presented by Mike Perring and Marlene Wasserman at the 2007 SA5M Conference, Capetown download>
Talking with Men about Sex
For our remote ancestors the ability to put on weight was beneficial for survival. When food was plentiful, people would ‘overeat’ and lay down stores of fat to live off during the hard times ahead. Excessive weight throughout the year would be untypical as seasonal starvation regularly occurred.
As societies developed and grew able to control their food supply, obesity not only became possible, it became a sign of affluence, and this remains the case in some developing countries.
However, in western societies the opposite is true. Obesity now occurs most frequently among the less well off. In the UK around 11% of people in the highest socio-economic group are obese whilst in the lowest it is over 25%.
Given the emphasis society now puts on being slim, it is understandable that people attempt to control weight for appearance sake as well as for reasons of health. But 96% of those who diet regain the weight they lost within two years, and sometimes are trapped in a cycle of weight loss and gain which increases the risk of illness.
Very few genetic disorders cause obesity. Most people gain weight for one very simple reason: the calories they consume are more than the energy they expend, and the extra calories are stored as fat.
Perhaps surprisingly studies show calorie intake is about the same as it was fifty years ago. What has changed is the amount of exercise we take. Our lives tend to be far less active because of the labour-saving gadgets we have, the enthusiasm with which we drive a car in preference to walking and the sedentary nature of much of our work. Also our diets are now very different. In particular, the proportion of fat we eat has increased dramatically since World War 2 and, gram for gram, fat contains twice as many calories as either protein or carbohydrate. It all adds up to a life in which more energy is consumed than expended.
How do we use up energy? It is used in the body in three main ways: 15% to 40% for physical activity, including everything from washing up to walking the dog; 10% for thermogenesis (warming ourselves); whilst 50% - 75% is needed just to maintain our resting metabolic rate (essential body mechanisms). The more we weigh the higher our metabolic rate, as we need more energy to keep our hearts pumping, lungs breathing and liver filtering toxins. It is a myth that the metabolism of thin people is higher - in fact it is less.
Referring again to genes: there has been growing interest recently in the role that genes play in determining weight. Perhaps genes account for people who eat what they like and never gain a pound while others only nibble food and put on weight.
Possibly this is explained by the ‘set weight’ theory. This says we may have genes for a particular weight range. Where exactly we are within the range depends on our lifestyle, exercise, and so on. If we are in the low range we will not gain weight even if we eat as much as we want, but if we are in the high range, keeping weight down is a struggle.
Genes themselves don’t make it inevitable that we are overweight, but they make harder to stay slim!
Eat well - avoid being calorie rich and nutrition poor – eat lots of fruit and vegetables but only limited high carbohydrate snack and pre-prepared foods.
Exercise often, and well, and find a form of exercise that you enjoy since it is a lifelong need in order to maintain good health.
Adjust weight gain before it becomes too great. If you gain around the waist remember 40 inches (men!) is the watershed – above that magic number you risk excess weight and it is the visceral fat ‘beneath the belt’ that is linked to heart disease.
Motivation is the key element in weight control. For help with weight management please contact us at Optimal Health. Our contact phone number is 020 7436 7713