Episode 82 | Dr. Alan Christianson | Is Your Liver Blocking Weight Loss?

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For over 20 years, Petra Kolber has choreographed and starred in over 100 award winning workouts. She’s an inspirational speaker presenting workshops around the world. And, she has been a  consultant to many of the top companies, including Reebok and Gatorade.

Over the years, I’ve run into Petra time and time again at fitness conferences. It’s easy to spot her from a block away, because she radiates confidence, vitality, and a  passion for life. It was only through reading her newest book, The Perfection Detox, that I started to understand her inner struggles with perfectionism, and the destructive impact it had on her life. In her book, she outlines 21 steps to breaking free from the need to feel perfect.

As a two-time cancer survivor, she is passionate about waking people up to the precious gift of time. Her mission is to inspire people to move more and fear less, so that they can stretch their dreams, strengthen their courage muscle and build an inspired life, full of joy and gratitude.

In today’s show, you’ll discover…

•  How to tame your inner critic, dissolve your fears, and step into the life you deserve.
• Specific steps to break free from the need to feel perfect
• Techniques for being a “healthy perfectionist” without being neurotic
• Mirror talk…how to avoid getting caught up in your inner critic when looking in a mirror
• Strategies for managing your “doubt demons”

Connect With Dr. Alan Christianson

Website | Metabolism Reset Diet Book | Facebook | Instagram

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Kathy Smith: Welcome to the show, Alan. It’s great to have you back again.

Alan Christianson: I’m really happy to be with you hear.

Kathy Smith: So liver. Most people don’t think about their liver anytime but especially when it comes to weight loss. But you say in your book that they should, so tell us why.

Alan Christianson: Your body never has exactly what it needs because we’re only eating a couple of times a day, and we’re using food and nutrients and fuel from our diet constantly. So your liver stores all of that and gives it out when you need it. And there’s never a day in which you consume exactly the amount of food that you need. So when you’re healthy, your liver stores the extras with no harm, and it lets it out on a day when you eat less. When it’s not working right, though, you always kind of struggle between just having more food leading to weight gain or less food causing you to crash or get brain fog.

Kathy Smith: So a healthy liver can either store fuel or it can burn it. But an unhealthy liver can only store it. Why does an unhealthy liver start to block this fat loss? This is a two-part question. And what causes the liver to become unhealthy besides drinking too much, which we pretty much know about?

Alan Christianson: It’s a funny thing, but utilizing fuel – and by fuel I’m talking about mostly carbs and fats, to some extent ketones, [inaudible 00:03:38] too – but using fuel is the most taxing thing your liver does. So it stores it in two ways. There’s a thing called glycogen and then one called triglycerides. If you’ve got a little of each, you’re in good shape, because glycogen you can burn easily. Triglycerides, you can burn if you have some glycogen.

But in some cases, there’s too much triglycerides compared to glycogen. And in that case, your liver gets more and more full of fuel, but it can’t burn that. So you mentioned alcohol. That can be a culprit. There is also this thing called fatty-liver syndrome, and it can come from just there being too much fuel available. But it can also be from your muscles not helping out enough. Or it can be from too few micronutrients, or it can be from other toxicants stressing your liver. But those are all things making it to where it can’t do a good job breaking down the fuel that it has stored up.

Kathy Smith: Basically, maybe to oversimplify it, you have the glycogen, which is more of your sugars, and you have triglycerides, which is more of your fats in a sense. Is that correct or not?

Alan Christianson: Yeah. I think about the triglycerides almost like a log and the glycogen like matches. You need matches, you need kindling to get things going. Once you can burn a big log, you’ve got power for a long period of time. And yes, carbohydrates can be made into specifically glucose. So glucose is the only thing you can make glycogen from. However, triglycerides, you can make out of all types of carbohydrates. You can make that from fat. You can make that from ketones. You can make alcohol into that. So it’s pretty easy to make triglycerides.

Glycogen takes up more physical space. So what happens is if the triglycerides are in too much of an abundance, you run out of the physical space for the glycogen, and there’s not enough of it to ignite and get those slower burning triglycerides going. 

Kathy Smith: So this starts to clog the liver and leads to more of this poor metabolism that you’ve seen in so many people and as you said in your book is one of the reasons why you created this program?

Alan Christianson: Exactly. When someone’s healthy, they can have a range of food that they can do well with. And for sure, anyone, no matter how healthy they are, if they get too little food, they will have unhealthy weight loss. If they get too much food, they will have weight gain. But healthy people have a broad leeway. They call this a metabolic flexibility. And they can eat a little more, a little less and yes, they’re energy stays stable, and their weight doesn’t have to fluctuate. But the less someone’s liver is able to buffer those fuel needs, the more their flexibility narrows and the more they can never get just that right amount of food.

Kathy Smith: So you created this smart and incredibly simple plan which is this 28-day jumpstart to again provide the liver with the nutrients it needs without giving it too much fuel. Tell us more about the actual diet, the actual plan, the metabolism reset diet. Because it is simple, but it’s profound.

Alan Christianson: Thank you. It’s simple in that the person who’s doing it just does a shake for breakfast and lunch and then a pretty good dinner. And if they want to snack on veggies, they can. They’ve got a lot of good options that way. So in terms of application, it’s crazy easy. And we give recipes and guidance for that. The concepts behind it are your liver is doing a lot to undo those stuck triglycerides, and it needs a lot of resources to help with that. So it needs certain essential amino acids, it needs micronutrients. There are many phytonutrients that help it in that process. So the goal is to provide enough of this stuff that it needs to package up and shuttle out those old triglycerides but not give so much fuel that the liver’s not motivated to tap into its own fuel stores.

Kathy Smith: Jumping back to the liver again, it’s interesting. In my 20s, I was going to holistic doctors and liver would come up all the time. Because it serves such a grand purpose in our bodies even though we think about our brains, we think about our hearts, we think about our muscles, and probably just about everything else. And the liver, which sits on the top of the abdomen there, it’s filtering out. And yet, the more I read your book, I was shocked at how much the liver does.

Are there tests if you can find out if your liver is functioning properly that we should know about? Also are there just symptoms we should be looking at to say, “If you’re experiencing this, you might think about your liver and perhaps having a sluggish liver.”

Alan Christianson: Yeah. The simplest symptoms would be the issue of any time you cut down your food, if you’re going to miss a meal or two, you feel exhausted. And your energy goes down. You get cravings. You get brain fog. So if you’re really a slave to some meal frequency, that could be a culprit. The other thing that goes along with that is if anytime the slightest deviation from what seems to be your ideal diet leads to big changes on the scale. If you’re at your friend’s wedding and you have a piece or two of cake to be a good guest and then you pay for it the next day because your dress doesn’t fit or your favorite jeans don’t fit, that’s not right. That means something’s not working well.

A little more tactical thing you can learn at home is about the height-to-waist ratio. We talk about someone’s weight, but in so many ways, weight can be misleading as a way from a true gauge of health. But your height relative to your waist is super important. By waist, I’ll be precise. It’s just the inches around your belly button in the morning, after you pee and poop, after you take a deep breath out and relax your tummy. It’s the inches around your belly button in that circumstance. That’s your waist. Your height is just your height.

The simple math is that the closer you get to your waist being half of your height or more than half your height, the more there are signs of there being a liver problem. So if a woman were 5 feet tall (5 x 12), she’s 60 inches tall. Her number is 30. She wants a gap away from 30. If she’s at or above 30 inches around her belly button, that’s a sign of there being a liver that’s getting clogged.

Kathy Smith: Is that this term that I hear you use over and over again? Is that this over fat term you’re using?

Alan Christianson: Yeah. We’ve talked about, in various circles, like overweight and obese, and the thing that we’re seeing is that the complications – the bad versions that go along with that (things like the diabetes, the fatty liver, the heart disease) – they’re not perfectly predicted by overweight. There are many people who are light enough. They’re not too large for their frame. They don’t appear to be too large. Their scale weight is appropriate, but they’ll still get diabetic. And there are those that are heavier than you think they should be, but they don’t.

So over fat is just too much fat in the wrong place. And that wrong place is around the belly button. We’ve talked about visceral fat for so many years, and this is bizarre, Kathy. But I learned this and reference it in the book. Visceral fat is not the enemy. It’s a warning sign, but the real danger is when the body can’t make any more visceral fat. Then the next reservoir becomes fat inside the organs – the liver and the pancreas. One of the biggest variables about waist circumference is liver mass.

People have seen a lot of pictures where the liver is this little brown thing sitting on the upper right of your abdomen. No, it goes across the whole length of the abdomen folks. It’s big. And when it’s larger, you’ve got more waist size.

Kathy Smith: Is it something that you could actually palpate. I know that I would go for acupuncture and acupressure and sometimes you’d touch your liver, depending on what. There might be sensitivity there. I know we’re talking about something else, but is there anything that we can actually touch and feel or not really?

Alan Christianson: Not so much. I’ve trained with a lot of doctors and clinicians and physical exam specialists, and the consensus is that when you can feel someone’s liver, they’re at pretty later stage of liver disease. That’s rather unusual. So when it does protrude well below that rib cage in the upper right side, that’s a little less common.

Kathy Smith: Okay. So let’s get back to the recent diets, the metabolism reset diet which is in your book. But let’s compare it to some of the other popular modalities and diets that are out there now, including perhaps the ketogenic. We have caloric restriction. Everybody’s talking about intermittent fasting. Do any of these concepts get woven into your diet, or what is your opinion about that?

Alan Christianson: The first things I would say is if anyone has found a tool that has worked for them personally, then I support them using that tool. If they’ve had lasting benefits, that’s awesome. I’m glad they did that.

I always want to sort out what’s most likely to work for someone who’s tried a lot of things that haven’t worked. I always just look at studies of big groups and consistent outcomes.

So a lot of ways you can reduce food intake or drastically lower carbohydrate intake, many can see some weight loss, and for some it can last. But there can be a pitfall for those who have liver problems. So if there’s too little food coming in, in general, then one may be too low in some of the essential amino acids, and that can be a concern for the keto diets or just a radical and caloric reduction.

There also can be windows of protein requirements that your liver goes through, where you wake up in the morning and if in a certain number of hours, if there’s not some amino acids available, your liver does change its relationship with insulin. So those who have those with liver issues, they can do better in the short term to follow something like this 28-day program. Once they’ve gotten back on track, then they may get better results from the diet plan that’s worked for them in the ways before.

The feedback that lights me up the most by far is when someone says, “I used to eat well or I tried these things and they didn’t work well enough for me. But during the reset, I had a big change in terms of inches off the waist and pounds, but then afterward, my past dietary approaches were more effective. I didn’t have to work as hard to get the same results.” So that’s the thing that’s most exciting to me.

Kathy Smith: Yeah. I can relate to that, especially when it comes to exercise. People might say, “How much exercise?” Or, “You must exercise all the time.”

I’ll say, “No. Maybe getting to your set point, your normal point, or whatever requires a certain amount of exercise,” but in general, once you get to that point, then there’s a maintenance that happens. And it can be done quite efficiently and effectively in 20 or 30 minutes a day. So actually, in your program, which I was reading through the book and understanding that you do recommend the light walking, the occasional stretching, and these three micro workouts weekly, which I want to talk about.

But you also kind of tell people during the 28-day program, you actually don’t want to exercise intensely. And I want to hear, after the 28 days, I think you still even have an opinion on what intense exercise can do to your liver. Can you get into that a little bit?

Alan Christianson: Afterward, really someone I encourage, there’s some basic amounts of exercise that are great: rotating some strengths and flexibility, some balance and cardio work. I encourage someone to have a relationship with it to where they’re enjoying it. I really encourage people, if there’s ways they can do things that are group based or community activities or if they have some challenges in themselves that they put out, those seem to be helpful.

But during the program, I don’t encourage high amounts. It was a real frustration of mine, working with people, until I saw more and more data supporting this idea. But I can’t think of anything you could do that would help your long-term health more than regularly exercising.

So kudos to you for being one of the people on the planet that’s probably gotten more people moving than anyone else. You’ve done so much good in that sense.

Kathy Smith: Thank you.

Alan Christianson: When someone wants to see quick weight loss, if they are training hard, they’re putting themselves in a real heightened state of stress. So I encourage minimal activity to keep the body moving, keep the muscles engaged and active during that window of rapid breakdown and fat. The other perk about that is you can run on a lower amount of total food. You don’t need as much fuel coming through your body. So your liver gets a bit more rest during that transition.

Once you’ve done that, not so much as far as concerns about too much exercise being harmful, I guess the one thing I would put out as a pitfall is just that if you are ramping it up, you want to take some time and get yourself adapted and get used to the level of training you’re having.

I vividly remember one gal when I was really along doing this process with people. She was fit. I think she was a physique competitor, and she had 10 pounds she was struggling with. She actually was prediabetic and those were her blood markers.

I said, “Hey, look. Do this thing. Take a month. Don’t train as hard during this month, and let’s see where you’re at afterward. Let’s try these guidelines.”

I saw her about three weeks into it, and she was crestfallen. She said, “It really hasn’t helped me.”

The first thing I went to is, “Tell me exactly how you modified your exercise.”

She kind of blushed and said, “Well, I cut back a little bit, but I knew that already the amount of exercise I was doing I wasn’t getting the results that I wanted. And I knew if I cut down too much, things would only be worse.”

I said, “Do you know what? That makes perfect sense. That’s perfectly logical. But it’s not how it works. Just trust me on this, and let’s see where you are in three weeks out, doing it exactly per the guidelines.”

Sure enough, she said, “I can’t believe this. I’ve cut back on the training and of course, being exacting on the shakes and the one meal per the outline.” She said, “Yeah. It’s all turned around for me.” And her blood markers got better.

And I said, “Great. Now go train. Have fun. Do it better than ever, and enjoy it even further.”

Kathy Smith: This is kind of funny, and I don’t know if it’s appropriate or not. But when I was in college, I was introduced to a program called Slender Now. This was 40 years ago, and it was two shakes a day and one meal. It was a company that sold this. And I think about it. Back then, people were getting involved with it because it was so new and so current.

I’ve always been a shake lover. All my listeners know this. I love shakes for various reasons. I love them when you go on a program like yours to reset. I love them for myself because I get home from my workout today, I can blend up a shake. I’m putting in some spinach, and I put my blueberries, and I put my flax, and I have all my little ingredients I put in depending on the day.

In that one drink, I can get all these nutrients, and I feel so alive and so light and so focused that I just love using that. For me, it’s just one meal a day. But at times if you’re going through something and you’re trying to shift something, the two shakes a day and one meal, it just makes life so easy, because you don’t have to really think about all the food elements throughout the day. And if you get creative with those shakes, and I know you do, you can make them so tasty and so delicious. I think the only problem people think sometimes is they’re just maybe limited by their creativity of how to make them taste great.

But shifting back over to these clinical trials that you had in 2014 to 2016 with tens of thousands, I understand, participants, can you talk about those trials and the types of results that people saw with the four-week reset?

Alan Christianson: The thing that we kicked this off with originally prior to then was for treatment of diabetes. We had countless examples where people could be on multiple medications and still under poor control of their blood sugar. What we came to learn was that we could do a program like this– now, I’m not advising anyone to do this without their doctor’s guidance, but we were their doctors guiding them.

We would have them stop their medications on day one of the program, and we would then re-check them 30 days out. And after stopping medications which weren’t effective enough by themselves, they would now be non-diabetic. That became quite common. There were some papers done on monitoring people with CT scans showing that programs like this could cause a regeneration of the insulin vesicles in the pancreas. So there can be big changes. And shifts in blood sugar, shifts in blood triglycerides and blood fats, cholesterol. Changes in blood pressure are quite common. So we see these things just all the time, and it’s exciting.

Kathy Smith: I know that you discuss this and I’ve read in other interviews you’ve done that you’re more plant-based. I know in your program, there are all kinds of foods that are high in phytonutrients. You incorporate cruciferous vegetables. But let’s talk about plants a little bit and why plants are so important.

Alan Christianson: To be really precise in this case and overall, I see some really strong arguments for the benefits of any food category you can think of, barring Twinkies and Big Macs. So food categories that our grandparents could have eaten, I can see benefits for all of them.

I don’t see strong arguments for the harm of the various food categories. So I’m not really anti any food categories. But in this context, I wanted to get a sustainable amount of protein to help with satiety and help to supply the essential amino acids for liver function and help to support muscle tissue. However, during times of rapid fat breakdown, there can be a large Ph burden on the body. There’s a lot of uric acid that’s being broken down for example. And some people can be prone to gouty attacks or gouty arthritis. So I wanted to have more plant-based proteins in the context of this to help support that process and not really go through some of the harmful side effects like gout or gallbladder disease that can come from rapid fat loss and a larger Ph burden.

So I did focus really on plant proteins in this. I did include really the meals in the evening, there’s more that are written for people who are eating animal foods than there are for vegans. But they are written both ways. So you’re not really avoiding animal foods, but the proteins are encouraging using plant protein-bases and then like you said, high amounts of a lot of the good plants that are specific phytonutrients to support the various pathways of the liver.

Kathy Smith: What about fat? How does fat factor into your plan?

Alan Christianson: There’s this short-term plan and a long-term plan. In long-term, people have got a lot leeway between fats and carbs for their preferences, their goals or what not, their satiety. During the plan, some fats are included, but we wanted to run as lean as fuel as possible. So I certainly assured adequate amounts of the two essential fats – alpha-linolenic and linoleic acids. But that’s easy to do without there being a lot of fuel.

So it was lean, focusing on here’s enough protein. Here’s some high-quality carbohydrate derivatives like resistant starch that can support your flora and correct your blood sugar. And here’s plenty of good fats to provide more nutrients and their essential compounds.

Kathy Smith: One of the things that I find interesting, and I realize this a direction I think you’re going for your next book and that is, thyroid function and thyroid disease many times can make you more apt to having liver problems. Is that correct?

Alan Christianson: That’s totally correct. Those things do go back and forth in many ways.

Kathy Smith: And when we say thyroid disease, is that Hashimoto’s, is it just anything dealing with your thyroid can impact liver?

Alan Christianson: Thyroid disease, there’s the diseases that affect performance which are more relevant, and they’re the ones that cause too much or too little hormones to come out. The too little is much more common of the two. And you’re right. Hashimoto’s is the most common cause of that.

So thyroid disease is almost exclusively Hashimoto’s or Grave’s Disease. Some people are told they have hypothyroidism and that’s true. They could have a thyroid that’s underperforming. That’s not a disease. That’s really just a level of its performance. But in almost all those cases, barring some other specific cause, it’s from Hashimoto’s.

Kathy Smith: Is autoimmune thyroid disease on the rise?

Alan Christianson: Sure. The best data is that they are becoming more common as are other autoimmune diseases. But they are quite prevalent. They are on the uptick. It’s a little different in some parts of the world or the other. But the industrial world is actually seeing the biggest increases of autoimmune thyroid disease.

Kathy Smith: Any thoughts on why that’s happening?

Alan Christianson: One of the biggest things we’re aware of is just radical changes in our intake of iodine. They’ve shifted a lot especially in the last several decades. There’s also the thought about the lower rate of many infectious diseases early in life. So places that have better sanitation that prevent a lot of childhood infections. It’s kind of a curious payoff, but the less sick you get as a child, the more likely you are to have allergies, asthma, and ultimately autoimmune disease as an adult.

Kathy Smith: So this idea of playing in the dirt and having pets and whatever helps with that gut flora that helps with all this. I don’t know if we’ve ever talked about this. I don’t think so. But I was diagnosed with Grave’s Disease in my early 30s.

Alan Christianson: I didn’t know that.

Kathy Smith: I know. It was crazy. I’m getting off track here a little bit, but I will tell you I was in L.A. I was shooting a television show called Alive and Well, which is on USA Network. I would go, put on my makeup in the morning, and the makeup artist said, “Kathy, something’s going on with your eye.”

Alan Christianson: Wow.

Kathy Smith: I know. Because you know where I’m going with this. Because the listeners with Grave’s Disease, there are different symptoms. But one of them is your eyes start to bulge a little bit, and if one eye bulges, it gets a little lopsided. If both eyes bulge, you look like Betty Davis. So I went to doctor after doctor. Nobody could figure it out. Then I went to the UCLA Jules Stein Eye Institute. I walked in and the doctor said, “You have Grave’s Disease.”

I went through an experimental program at the time, which was kind of interesting, of how they reversed it, which I can tell you at a later point. But I will tell you what caused it, I was working, I was getting up at 4:00 a.m. every morning, I was going to the set, it was new for me. I was doing a lot. I was kind of at the beginning and the height of my career in the beginning and it was really taking off.

They said it could be a stress response besides other things. Do you agree with that or not?

Alan Christianson: That can certainly be a factor. And that’s actually been shown for Grave’s, but it’s not really panned out for Hashimoto’s. That’s by no means a sole factor, but that can be a real instigator. So if you’ve got the potential to have this disease develop, it’s much more common to have it take place when you’ve got a pretty full plate in front of you.

Kathy Smith: Switching back to liver, because the liver– I know we only have a little bit of time left. Besides buying your book, besides getting out and doing the reset diet or in addition to, what are some of the other nutrients, maybe supplements– I know milk thistle is very popular. I take it every night, because of the liver-cleansing properties. But what do you feel about those kinds of supplements?

Alan Christianson: I always think about what are the ultimate root causes? What are the real issues that give rise to problem? And the main thing for the liver is really that whole problem of fuel overload. That’s the most harmful thing. So it can be useful to have a sense about total food intake.

It’s easy to either demonize or almost idolize either fats or carbs. And that’s a bit of a pitfall because fats, carbs, even ketones, they all break down to the same thing, which is called oxaloacetate. And too much of that just hurts your liver more than anything.

So first and foremost, getting a sense of how much fuel your body does well with and knowing that it really is the total fuel load. It’s not that any one of those things is magic or any one of those things is poison. They’re all relative fuel sources.

Kathy Smith: I think that’s a real gift that you’re giving people, because it’s something that I wrote in books years ago when I worked with nutritionists from UCLA and all around. And I think this idea that we do demonize a carbohydrate or fat or some food group. Not only is it not accurate, but also, it creates that type of eating pattern that becomes a bit dysfunctional. So you’re not getting fats, so you’re eating too much sugar, because you’re hungry all the time. Or you compensate.

Alan Christianson: Well, once you say one thing is bad, then the flip side always comes into mind that what we’re missing must be fine to have more of and our natural tendencies are then to indulge in that as to what our needs might be.

Kathy Smith: Alan, we’ve covered a broad range of topics today. What are your parting thoughts on who benefit from the Metabolism Reset Diet?

Alan Christianson: If you’re someone to where diets have been a struggle, if you’re someone to where you just cut out x food, your weight goes down, and you feel great, no worries. You’re body’s probably pretty stable. But if you’re someone to where if you’ve got to lower your food enough to not feel well in order to lose weight, that means something is not working right. That means your liver is not able to properly store and release energy. So you have to accurately compromise your well-being and you’ve got to restrict food enough to where you’re tired, you’ve got brain fog, you’ve got cravings. If it’s only then when you see your weight come down, that’s not okay. That means something is wrong.

And it would be so awesome if you could undergo a transformation that would let your body better regulate your energy and to where you could eat based upon– choose good foods a bulk of the time and eat based upon a reasonable hunger load. Be active as you enjoy it. But when you can do all those things and your body can sort the rest out, that’s awesome, and that’s the transformation I’d love to see happen for people from the program.

Kathy Smith: It’s such a nutritious way of looking at both movement and food and not this outrageous way of I have to exercise seven hours a day to maintain my weight, and I’m always struggling. So it’s sort of taking the struggle out of it. When people realize that it doesn’t have to be a struggle, it’s really life changing. It really is. So I appreciate it, Alan. I appreciate what you’ve done, what you do. I’m always on your Instagram, and I’m watching you go, go, go.

We’re going to let everybody know in the liner notes, but why don’t you just give a shout out now where the best place is to find everything you do. 

Alan Christianson: Sure. The easiest hub is DrChristianson.com.

Kathy Smith: Okay. You’re truly extraordinary. And the big take away today is the liver is the key to a healthy metabolism. And when it isn’t functioning properly, you basically lose your ability to burn fuel, and that overloaded liver can store fat, slow down your metabolism, and then lead to excessive weight gain. So I would love to have you back when you come out with your– since thyroid is near and dear to my heart, I want to have you back to talk about that.

Alan Christianson: Yeah. That will be fun.

Kathy Smith: Yeah. That will be fun. Thanks so much. I look forward to seeing you in the coming months. Thanks so much for coming on the show. I know you’re very busy and your time is valuable. I appreciate it.

Alan Christianson: I have a huge respect for all you’ve done, Kathy. And I’m always happy to have an excuse to hang out with you.

Kathy Smith: Okay. Lots of love. Bye-bye.

Alan Christianson: Bye-bye.

Kathy Smith: If you’ve tried different diets and feel like you’ve ended up in the same place, then check out the Metabolism Reset Diet. What Dr. Christianson has done with this book is really extraordinary. My big take away from today is that the liver is a key to a healthy metabolism. And when it isn’t functioning properly, it loses the ability to burn fuel. An overloaded liver can only store fuel as fat, which slows your metabolism and leads to excess weight gain, especially around your midsection.

So even if you cut out your sugars and your carbs, you can still struggle with trying to lose weight and struggle with high blood sugar. You can check out Dr. Christianson at IntegratedHealthcare.com.

Now, if you’ve enjoyed this episode, I’d really appreciate it if you’d come over and join me on Instagram at Kathy Smith Fitness. I look forward to connecting to everybody, listening to your comments, your questions, your feedback. It always makes my day.

Also, as a quick reminder, these podcasts are great to listen to while you’re working out or while you’re walking. That’s one of the reasons I like to say, “Walk and talk. I talk. You walk.” You get to burn calories while listening to something new. You get to learn and also get your blood circulating.

Don’t forget there’s dozens of other episodes that you can check out in the archives. So if you’re interested in learning how to focus on what’s strong instead of what’s going wrong, check out one of my latest episodes with my discussion with Fatima Doman. Or if you want to discover the lessons that you can learn from your anxiety, yes, your anxiety can teach you something about yourself. Listen to Julian Brass. His episode is called Own Your Anxiety.

To hear about CBDs and how they can help manage pain and encourage a good night’s sleep, really deep, relaxing sleep, don’t miss the show with Dr. Melissa Gallagher. And finally, if you have heard about blood flow restriction, great. If you haven’t, it’s the big buzz in the fitness industry, and you’re going to want to listen to my conversation with Dr. Jim Stray Gundersen.

The podcast, today, is available anywhere you listen. So search The Art of Living with Kathy Smith, whether you’re at Apple Podcast or on Spotify. And you’ll find all the other episodes. You could even say, “Hey, Siri. Play the Kathy Smith podcast.” And guess what? She’ll play the latest episode. I love technology.

And while you’re there, don’t forget to leave a review. For those of us who create shows, it’s our life blood and the way that I can connect with you individually. Because I read these reviews and I love reading all the positive things – especially the positive things you’re saying. But I also love to listen to questions, the comments, and any feedback you have. So until next time, I love you guys. Here’s to your health. Bye-bye.