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Women, Weight and Hormones: A Weight-Loss Plan for Women Over 35
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55 of 56 people found the following review helpful
Dr. Vliet is an M.D. and founder and medical director of Her Place: The Women's Center for Health Enhancement and Renewal in Arizona and Texas, a medical practice specializing in comprehensive hormone evaluations for women. She is the author of Screaming to Be Heard: Hormone Connections Women Suspect...and Doctors Still Ignore, an additional book on hormone issues which I own and found valuable when I was researching alternatives to HRT. Dr. Vliet is a clear, easy-to-read writer, and her book is well-laid-out and accessible.
The subtitle of this book is "A Weight-Loss Plan for Women Over 35." In it, the author covers the basics of when and why women gain weight from a hormonal perspective. The doctor does an outstanding job explaining how the female reproductive system is one part of the entire, intricate endocrine system, including the adrenals, the thyroid, and the pancreas. She speaks about these important concepts in clear, layperson's terms making them accessible for readers who want much deeper knowledge of their bodies than the average weight-loss book can provide.
The doctor's diet plan is basically the same as that in The Zone by Barry Sears, that is, he says we should eat 30% protein, 40% carbs, 30% fat, and this diet suggests 35% protein, 35% carbs, 30% fat. Interestingly, in Sears' subsequent Soy Zone book, he must have realized that it is a real pain to measure and count grams and ounces of food, and that most people just won't bother with it, because he recommends eye-balling portions. This means that you will basically cover one-third of your plate with soy products, and the other two-thirds with fruits and veggies. Dr. Vliet's method is more complicated than this. She provides meal plans which are supposed to give you an idea of what you will normally eat on her diet. Then, as Weight Watcher's does, she offers "swaps" (exchanges) for the two main food groups in her menu plan, protein and carb. For example, you can swap an apple for a pear in one of her meals. She states that she feels that pretty much all the fat you need will come from your protein foods (that is, be saturated, animal fat).
I applaud her recommending a basic plan of at least 1600 calories per day, wisely pointing out that if a woman goes much below that, her metabolism will crawl to a halt. I believe that many women who want a simple approach to menopausal weight gain will find this book useful. For further reading on diets like hers, I suggest Sears' book, the Eades' Protein Power and even Dr. Atkins (it can be done with lots of veggies for your limited carbs).
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62 of 67 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2001
As a fitness instructor for the past 15 years, I have worked with many women and helped them with their struggles with weight management issues. One of the most frequently asked questions I would get is "Do hormones make you fat?". Well, I know that the studies tell us that hormone replacement therapy does not cause weight gain, but many of my clients would like to convince you otherwise. Well, after an unexpected total hysterectomy at age 36, I was asking the same question! I was thrilled to find this book, Women, Weight and Hormones, by Dr. Vliet. She answered so many of the questions I was trying to find answers to for MYSELF! Through the information in the book, I have been able to work with my physician and individualize my HRT. I see a big difference in my energy level now, and have adjusted my eating habits to give me a better balance fuel for the entire day. I am having to deal with issues much sooner than I ever anticipated and issues that I have been working with my middle-aged clients for years. Now, I feel I have a real resource not only for myself but also for my female clients. Thank you Dr. Vliet writing such a wonderful book - it really has helped put me on the right track after my hysterectomy.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2003
I have battled a hormone imbalance for over 20 years. This imbalance does not show up on routine hormone tests - mainly due to the way modern medicine views and tests female hormones. I read this book and was shocked to discover why most of the over-the-counter self remedies (soy, T3, natural progesterone creams, DHEA, etc.) I tried actually made my imbalance WORSE -- some of those treatments could have caused lethal effects when combined with my particular imbalance. This author raises NUMEROUS common sense paradigm shifts in medical thinking regarding diagnosis and treatment options which affect weight and hormones. This one book explained everything I've ever read about hormones and weight in a way that was applicable and useful - not slanted towards the purchase of a product. Basic knowledge vital for female health.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2003
As a patient of Dr. Vliet's I know that she understands how the female body can mystify us. Being over 40 and wanting to lose weight was a big challenge. After joining Weight Watchers I bought this book and found that the two work well together. Often times "dieters" forget about the essential vitamins and supplements that we need to add to our daily routine. This book will guide you through from the "why is this happening to me?" to the "Oh, I can do this". Her meal plans can easily be added to the Weight Watcher program (Count those points), and I found them to be a nice change from the prepared food in the frozen dinner selections of my supermarket.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on March 4, 2004
I went back & read The Menopause Diet and found nothing at all similar about Dr. Vliet's recommendations in Women, Weight & Hormones. In fact, many of the things the Menopause Diet recommends (Soy, over-the-counter progesterone cremes, etc.) are advised against by Dr. Vliet in Women, Weight & Hormones as many of these over-the-counter fad remedies actually become quite dangerous when combined with a hormonal imbalance. Perhaps one could make a mistake by skimming both books, but if you actually read them both, they are very different concepts in female healthcare.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Excellent and thorough book about the many, many hormonal and endocrine issues that affect women--especially after menopause. It's not only helpful in addressing nutrition and hormones, but also in explaining the supplemental needs of post-menopausal women. My nutrition changes, hormone replacement and supplements have made a huge difference for me. I lost the needed weight, and also feel much more like my old self. Changes were needed in all areas. Doctors typically don't address supplements--as Elizabeth Vliet says. I am so grateful for the author's emphasis on addressing glucose intolerance--I think it has already helped me to prevent diabetes. As the author stresses, it's too late by the time it's diagnosed by the doctor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on June 16, 2009
Awesome information. I thought I was going crazy. My doctors don't know as much as they should. This book explains how everything works. I also recomend "Screaming to Be Heard" too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 17, 2013
For anyone like myself who has got over 60 and is struggling with weight gain and loss of libido this is the book to read. This has inspired me to contact the author by e mail and I will be having a video consultation to enable me to take the results to my medical practitioner and consultant for further discussion. There is definitely a link between hormones and weight gain. Hold this space.......
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2013
The book seemed a little dry,it made sense but was hard to keep me interested for a long time. I had to keep trying.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2008
This is the BEST book that I have ever read on the topic of women and hormones. Dr. Vliet explains everything very well and she is very thorough in her explanations. Every woman should read this book. If you're at the age before peri-menopause (late 20's, early 30's) I strongly recommend you read this book so you will KNOW how to prevent
and be knowledgeable about the symptoms of a hormone imbalance. I wish I would have read this when I was in my 20's. The transition into my late 30's would NOT have been so difficult because I would have understood what was happening to my body. Every women should read!!!
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