South Beach Diet - Metabolic Testing

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12-10-2006, 06:39 AM
Seems like a lot of people have been posting issues lately that make me think of a test I had done at our local nutritional clinic. They are fabulous there...with nutritionists, doctors, and even a chef on staff. I live in a tiny town but it seems like we've been blessed with a clinic that's better than some have even in big cities. Anyways, I was amazed with the test results when I had mine done, but I'm even more amazed at some of the results the women in my 'Food and Mood' group have received. One woman, who has binged or starved for most of her life found out that she's only burning 400 calories a day even though she's very active and exercises! She's working with the nutritionist and doctor to build her metabolism back up and is finally losing weight in a healthy way. :)

Anyways, I got some information on the test and I thought I'd pass it along to you:

They call it Metabolic Testing. Here's what their brochure says:

Metabolic rate is an important factor in the determination of a suject's energy needs. It can be estimated by measuring resting energy expenditure (REE). REE is measured by indirect calorimetry or respirometry: measurement of the concetration of oxygen and carbon dioxide in exhaled gases. The volume of oxygen consumed (VO2) and carbon dioxide produced (VCO2) is proportional to the rate of metabolism. The ratio of VCO2 to VO2 is the respiratory quotient (RQ), which describes the type of fuel or substrate metabolized (protein, carbohydrates and fat).

REE data provides information to help with the following:

Proper feeding of a patient's need to ensure maintenance, repletion, or depletion of energy stores.
Metabolic effects of disease, trauma, and eating disorders on a patient's energy requirements
Intervention needed in nutritional management of disease, chemotherapy, stress, or injury.

Metabolic Rate Interpretation:

Hypometabolism--The actual REE (AREE) is below the predicted REE (PREE). Levels at more than or equal to 10% below PREE are consistent with sleep, hypothyroidism, malnutrition or pharmacological intervention (e.g. depressants or muscle relaxants).
Hypermetabolism--The actual AREE is above the PREE. Levels more than or equal to 10% above PREE are consistent with a non-resting state, elevated body temperature, infection, respiratory stress, pharmacological stimulants, trauma, or pain.

Elevated protein turnover (greater than 15%) indicates utilization of body stores [this means your body is dissolving muscle and organs to get the protein it needs because it's not getting enough from your diet.]. This can occur with protein malnutrition, calorie malnutrition, or protein calorie malnutrition. It mimics an accelerated aging process and long term complications can include decreased muscle mass, bone loss, compromised immune system and organ tissue loss.

The tests are interpreted by a doctor and a nutritionist together. I was really relieved at the results of my test because they showed I was consuming enough protein to protect my muscles from being harvested.

I was amazed at what the tests can show to people who've done a lot of yo-yo dieting. It really does mess up your metabolism badly. I know some people who are having trouble losing weight on very low calorie diets in spite of tons of exercising and weight lifting...all because of years of yo-yo dieting. That's so sad!

12-10-2006, 10:12 AM
Fascinating stuff! I'm most encouraged that it can be fixed! I'd like to shout that from the roof tops.

12-11-2006, 12:32 PM
Me, too, Susan!

That said, some damage can't be reversed...and even if we do fix part of it, we may never get back to where we were to start with. Just a caution for those of us that are currently yo-yoing. Don't do the damage now because you figure you can fix it later. You know? :goodvibes:

Still, for those of us whose yo-yo-ing days are behind us and thus, unchangeable, there are things we can do to fix what was done. That's positive! :)

12-12-2006, 04:59 PM
So how CAN you reverse it? Weights, eating enough. Anything else?

12-12-2006, 06:39 PM
Wow! what a good question!

I'll have a shot at what I think ... keep in mind that I'm not sure and I certainly don't have any resources to quote.

Exercise, for sure. There is something about regular exercise that goes beyong the usage of calories per episode. a cumulative effect.

Increased muscle mass is a given I think.

I've read lots of times that frequent feedings will keep your metabolism rev'd. Since it takes calories to digest food.

It'll be interesting to see what the others say.

12-13-2006, 01:01 AM
You know...this is the kind of question that I think is unique to your problem and that is best answered by a nutritionist hand-in-hand with a doctor. :)

I know for my friend with the very low metabolism who is not much overweight, it's eating a lot of protein while attempting to keep the calorie count as low as possible (not much over 400, since that's what she's burning a day). She says the protein is supposed to help rev up her metabolism. But I have no idea if that would work for everyone. She may be 5-10 pounds overweight on a 5'6" not much, you know? For the majority (99.9% of us, I'd say), anything under 1200 calories sends our bodies into starvation mode and we don't lose a thing. You know?

Exercise, as long as you do it safely, can't hurt. :) And the more muscle you have, the more you 'rev' your metabolism as muscles burn calories even when at rest...fat burns almost none. So, use up your fat and increase your muscle mass and you'll have a faster metabolism! The capsaicin (sp?) in peppers and spicy food can help rev your metabolism as well. But I don't think it's enough to make a huge difference. ;)

If I had tried many different things to lose weight and to get off a plateau if I'd lost weight before, I'd first check my calorie intake and then go see a doctor and a nutritionist. See what they say before you take it into your own hands. :) As one of the other mods says, "We're not doctors. We don't even play them on TV!" ;)

12-27-2006, 04:29 PM
Where can I get my metabolism tested? Are there certain clinics that do it?

12-27-2006, 05:10 PM
Mikesbridetobe, Beachgal is off on vacation until after the New Year. She will probably respond to your question then.