Peeling Off Pandemic Pounds

appetite-suppressing hormones
Sherry Torkos

By Sherry Torkos, B.Sc.Phm., R.Ph., author of, “The Glycemic Index Made Simple”

The pandemic has posed many different challenges to our health, including the management of our weight. Taking the steps to minimize public exposure for those of us who are high-risk during the pandemic has thrown a wrench into many of our daily routines, particularly those involving exercise and diet. Many of the changes in our normal routine have led to us living a more sedentary lifestyle. Taking the necessary steps to formulate good exercise and eating habits is crucial to fighting off those extra pounds that have snuck up on us during the pandemic. Here are four ways to shake off the sedentary lifestyle:

Get Moving

Several studies have found that sedentary lifestyles increase the risk of various chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and obesity. When we’re sitting around, we are not using as much energy, which results in less calories being burned. In fact, sitting is now considered to be as dangerous as smoking. To help fight the effects of a sedentary lifestyle, it is important to add different types of activities into your daily routine. Adding bits of activity throughout your day like short walks and jumping jacks will help to improve circulation and give you a burst of energy. 

Sync Up Your Probiotic With A Prebiotic 

Many of us probably already incorporate a probiotic into our daily routines. Probiotics are known for their benefits concerning gut and immune health. However, there is growing evidence that suggests probiotics can help with weight management, particularly when they are combined with a prebiotic. 

Mounting research suggests probiotics may promote the release of appetite-suppressing hormones, helping to reduce the number of calories you absorb from food and potentially reducing inflammation. In combination with a prebiotic, the weight-management benefits can be increased. Prebiotics are dietary fibers that help nourish probiotics. Acting as food for the good bacteria in your gut, prebiotics can support weight management by promoting the feeling of fullness, supporting regular bowel movements and improving the bioavailability of minerals, according to several studies.

Pro+ Synbiotic is a prebiotic and probiotic combination supplement. Taking a combination supplement such as this is a great way to get the benefits of weight management, gut health and immune health. Pro+ Synbiotic includes a probiotic plus 2 grams of BioEcolians, a proprietary prebiotic designed to support microbiome diversity for improved digestive health and immune response. It also reduces constipation and improves stool consistency, which then reduces bloating. However, when you are looking for a supplement, you want to make sure you are doing the necessary research. Look for products backed by science and made by reputable companies. It is also important to look for products that are stable at room temperature and doesn’t need to be refrigerated. I dive deeper into the benefits of probiotics and prebiotics at where I serve as a medical advisor and can answer your questions about gut health. 

Add GI Intelligence To Your Menu

Using the glycemic index when meal planning is another way to help you lose some of those quarantine pounds. It is an important tool because keeping your blood sugar levels stable can help you control hunger and cravings. The index measures the rate at which carbohydrate-rich foods break down into sugar. Foods with a low glycemic index breakdown slowly and have a more steady impact on blood sugar. Some of the foods low in the glycemic index include high-fiber whole grains, leafy greens, berries, apples and sweet potatoes. When choosing meals, opt for high-fiber carbohydrates and eat protein-rich foods to help raise your metabolism. 

Get To Bed On Time

Proper sleep is important to helping you lose more weight. Sleep allows your body to repair itself, regenerating and producing some of the vital hormones that help to regulate several of the body’s processes. Some of these processes include regulating appetite and metabolism. Research shows that a lack of sleep increases a hormone called ghrelin, which can increase appetite and reduce levels of human growth hormone (HGH), which helps to regulate metabolism. A lack of sleep is also associated with several adverse health effects, including an increased risk of heart disease, cancer and obesity. That being said, don’t skip sleep! Plus, if you are staying up late, you increase the temptation to snack on junk foods.

You will feel better for it once you incorporate these simple steps into your routine to help you shake off the sedentary lifestyle and peel off those pandemic pounds. 

Biography: Sherry Torkos, B.Sc.Phm., R.Ph., is a pharmacist, author and health enthusiast with a passion for prevention. Sherry graduated with honors from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science in 1992. Since that time she has been practicing holistic pharmacy in the Niagara region of Ontario. Her philosophy of practice is to integrate conventional and complementary therapies to optimize health and prevent disease. Sherry has won several national pharmacy awards for providing excellence in patient care. As a leading health expert, she has delivered hundreds of lectures to medical professionals and the public. Sherry has authored 18 books and booklets, including, “The Canadian Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine,” “Saving Women’s Hearts,” and “The Glycemic Index Made Simple.”


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The Editorial Team at Lake Oconee Health is made up of skilled health and wellness writers and experts, led by Daniel Casciato who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We aim to provide our readers with valuable insights and guidance to help them lead healthier and happier lives.