Episode 27: AMA | Zinc, Fasting & Diabetes

Streaming live from their Raleigh office, Dr. Simonds and Michelle Kennedy, NP-C were back to answer your weight loss and health questions. Along with a $25.00 Target gift card giveaway, Dr. Simonds will be giving away a Naternal CBD package worth $200!

Q: Zinc has been in the news a lot lately. What does it really do and what do you recommend?

A: Yes, zinc has definitely been in the news lately and the main reason is due to the coronavirus pandemic. Zinc plays an important role in the body and is key for good health. Here’s why; a virus gets inside the cells, replicates itself, and then spreads throughout the body. Research shows that zinc actually stops that replication from happening and makes a difference. During the first few days of a virus entering your body, the replication phase is happening, which is when zinc is the most helpful. Zinc does require a transporter, such as the flavonoid, quercetin to help get across the cell membrane in order to stop the virus from replicating. Quercetin is available over the counter at most vitamin stores or online merchants such as Amazon. Another transporter is Hydroxychloroquine, which is available by prescription only. Vitamin D3 is a great supplement to take daily to keep healthy as well. It’s best to focus on preventative health, stress management, and maintaining a healthy weight.

Q: What are the benefits of intermittent fasting? I’m scared I may ruin my metabolism if I do it wrong. What should I be careful of?

A: Intermittent fasting won’t ruin your metabolism and fasting is a therapeutic way to improve health and lose weight. Typically done in windows of 16-18 hours of fasting and 6-8 hours of feeding. Typically, you’re not eating after your last meal of the day before and then delaying breakfast until mid-day. Dr. Jason Fung is a leading expert on fasting. Our ancestors have always engaged in fasting when food was scarce or unavailable. Important things to remember are to eat healthy foods like protein, healthy fats, and vegetables when not fasting- and don’t use fasting as an excuse to eat unhealthy foods during your eating window.

Q: Does carbonation aid or hinder weight loss?

A: While we really don’t have a clear answer on carbonation and weight loss, it really depends on the individual patient and their habits. If you are someone that likes the fizzy, carbonated feeling and taste, just make sure you always choose sugar-free options. Remember that while diet soda may not have sugar, it does have artificial sweeteners and other ingredients that may impact weight loss. Everyone is different, so you may need to experiment and see how your body reacts.

Q: How much water should I really be drinking? If I add flavor enhancers, does it still count as water?

A: Yes, it definitely counts as water when flavor enhancers are added. We recommend about 60oz of water daily for most people. Water intoxication is something that can happen, but that takes about 400-500oz daily, which is a large amount. For patients that may be taking medications that can cause a dry mouth or constipation such as Phentermine, we recommend around 80oz of water daily. It does depend on the person, what their current water intake is and how they’re feeling.

Water is important to weight loss

Q: What fruits are allowed and should be avoided on the keto diet? And at what stage can you have more fruit included?

A: When consuming under 20 grams of carbohydrates daily we often say to avoid all fruit. Then, if you’re able to lose weight while including more carbs you can use berries or tart green apples. Most folks do ok with that in moderation and can still stay in ketosis and lose weight. It’s best to incorporate any fruit consumption into a protein, fat-based meal, or snack and use fruit as a condiment instead of the main course. This slows down the blood sugar spike and helps us lose weight easier. Folks who exercise frequently and don’t have diabetes or insulin resistance can often consume more carbs and still stay in ketosis and lose weight than those who don’t exercise and do have blood sugar/insulin issues. It is very individual, so it’s important to experiment and see how you do.

Q: What are some signs of high blood sugar and when should you be tested for diabetes? Do you test for it?

A: Classic symptoms of diabetes include frequent urination, excessive thirst/drinking, and increased hunger. By the time someone experiences these symptoms, the disease is already present. It’s best to focus on prevention and catch diabetes before this happens. Results for fasting blood sugar tests should be under 99 and can be performed by a primary care provider. The hemoglobin A1C test can show blood sugar numbers for the previous 90 days and a test result of 5.7 or less is ideal. While we don’t perform these tests in the office, our providers can certainly order them for you.