Exploring the Effects of Bee Pollen on Weight Loss

A Andrena sp. bee with a full load of pollen o...

Bee Pollen

Bee pollen is known as the most powerful natural energy supplement, a complete product containing absolutely every essential nutrient one needs to remain healthy.

The low-calorie food and its health benefits have been thoroughly tested and analyzed by specialists all over the world, the results of these studies showing the product is efficient not only in improving the functionality of the cardiovascular, respiratory and nervous systems but also in treating skin problems and arthritis, in restoring the hormonal balance and increasing the body’s endurance and stamina.

Moreover, bee pollen has been proven to reduce digestive conditions by encouraging gastric activity, preventing bowel problems, suppressing appetite and increasing the metabolism rate of carbs, proteins and dietary fats. Based on these results, nutritionists tried to establish whether there is a link between bee pollen and weight management and here’s what they found out!

How Bee Pollen Sustains Weight Loss

Regardless of the type of bee pollen supplement you’re using – raw or processed, your body receives an important amount of carbohydrates, proteins, minerals and vitamins especially from the B-group, amino acids and antioxidants, fatty acids as well as digestive enzymes, all these compounds being responsible for the energy bursts this food provides.

The high content of vitamins and minerals in pollen gives you extra energy and suppresses the cravings for sugars and sweets, thus it helps you manage better your daily intake of foods responsible for weight gain. Then, the amino acids in this supplement – among which phenylalanine – are very efficient in cutting down hunger although an ounce of bee pollen only provides 90 calories.

Thanks to its energizing action, pollen boosts the general stamina and maintains an elevated mood while dieting, enhancing the overall health state and well-being. Taken regularly, this product not only favors the reduction of body fat but also sustains intense fat burning workouts, whether we refer to cardio, aerobic or weight trainings.

Another component responsible for the link between pollen and weight loss is lecithin, a lipid that stimulates the metabolism, speeding up the fat-burning processes at the same time. Lecithin, found in this natural supplement in very high concentrations (15%), helps the body remove the fats stored in stubborn areas, melting them away extremely fast.

Bee with pollen on flower

Bee Pollen

Making the Most of It

Although bee pollen is very effective in shedding the unwanted pounds and boosting energy levels, keep in mind that maintaining a healthy weight requires a more complex approach. In other words, you won’t be able to lose weight and maintain the results for long periods unless you’re ready to change your dietary and lifestyle habits as well. The more active you get and the healthier you eat, the better and faster the results will be!

Also, pay attention that there are several brands and companies producing dietary supplements and not all of them are highly qualitative. If you want to be sure you make a good choice, look for a quality product. For example, Zi Xiu Tang bee pollen supplement is marketed as a weight loss supplement but there is really little evidence that proves that it removes unwanted fats for good.

And last, remember that for the purpose of burning lipids and losing weight the supplement should be taken 30 minutes before meals, with a glass of water and preferably on an empty stomach.

Joshua Kane researches the benefits of taking bee pollen for health and well-being. You can find out more about bee pollen and its effects on health by visiting his website.

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Go Wild: Breaking Fat Burning Rules

When you want to lose weight, there might be a number of rules you will want to follow in order to shed the pounds as quickly as possible.

That said some rules just do not work!

No matter how great they sound or how many experts can show you the results following these rules will bring you, there are a number that can be easily broken. Mind you, not always but at least sometimes.

Knowing which fat burning rules to break will give you better chance of losing the weight you would like to lose and keep it off.

1. Using certain items to “motivate” you will sometimes simply not work!

Having a size 2 pair of jeans in your closet might seem like a good way to motivate yourself towards your weight loss goals. However, let us face it for most people this is just depressing and frustrating.  Especially, if you currently wearing size 10 clothes.

The better way is to get rid of anything that does not fit.  Next step is to stop weighing yourself every day.   If you are exercising, as you should, you are building muscles.   Muscles weigh much more than fat, therefore the scale may become your enemy and might trip you to give up your weight loss journey.

2. Cut out all your love (junk) food in your life.

If you have bad eating habits, cutting out these habits, is a sure way to fall right back into them.  When the cravings kick in, you will simply be too frustrated to continue with any fat burning diet.

Instead, break this rule.  Cut back on your calories and watch what you eat, but allow yourself to have sweets and other bad food a few times a week, gradually continuing to cut back until you don’t need those foods any longer.

3. Cutting out one food group or another in general.

You need proteins, even if you are a vegetarian.  You need carbohydrates, even if you do go on the Atkins diet.  You even need fats, even if you are overweight.

All the nutrients in your body have to work together on a daily basis to regulate your body’s function, and cutting out completely one link to that chain will ruin your entire health.  Instead, learn which foods to eat in moderation and follow that rule instead.

You are in control of your life. Question weight loss rules that you come across.  It is far better to do that than to follow rules that you will entice you to break them. We are all unique human beings. One rule may work for you but not for me.  The secret is to find fat burning diets that will allow you to be what you are and at the same time guide you to a healthy new lifestyle change.

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New Research on the Placebo Effect

You have probably heard about the Placebo effect. We know new drugs are measured against the placebo effect because a good percentage of people get better just by taking sugar
pills.

I think a lot of us don’t take the time to consider how crazy this is. Some pretty major health conditions are “cured” by basically the belief that the pill or injection will work.

This is obviously power of the mind stuff, but until recently scientists had never been able to actually “see” the placebo effect actually working in the brain.

Thanks to Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (f MRI) and PET scans, researchers can now see the brain work in real time.

The Placebo Research

A researcher named Jon-Kar Zubieta, a neurologist at the University of Michigan, used some amazing trickery in order to discover that the driver of placebo effect in the brain is an area called the nucleus accumbens (NAcc).

What is interesting, (and actually makes sense) is that this area of the brain is responsible for our expectancy of reward.

I won’t go into too much detail about the actual study (it involved researchers sticking subjects in the jaw with a needle to cause pain – OUCH!!!), and then giving them an intravenous pain cure.

The cure of course was just plain old saline solution (a placebo).

The PET scans revealed that the placebo caused an actual dopamine boost with highest dopamine release coming from the nucleus accumbens (NAcc).

All the subjects experienced some relief, but some more than others.

So the researchers used fMRI on the same subjects to see if there was a correlation between those who got the best placebo effect with those who potentially had the mostactive nucleus accumbens (NAcc).

Scientists are tricky! Here is how they pulled it off.

While using f MRI to monitor brain activity, they had the subjects play a game where they could receive monetary rewards. The anticipation of reward intensified the activity in the nucleus accumbens.

The cool part is that the people who had the highest activity in the NAcc during the game are the same people who had the most profound placebo effect in the pain part of the study.

The Take Home

So it seems that it pays to have an NAcc that hums if you want to get cured by a sugar pill.

I have been thinking about this study a lot and it begs this question.

Could we actually train ourselves to enhance our expectancy of reward, thus strengthening the NA? If so, this might mean we could develop some ability for self healing. Or it just might be genetic – nobody knows right now

Here is the citation for the study I just summarized.

Scott et al.: Individual Differences in Reward Responding
Explain Placebo-Induced Expectations and Effects
Publishing in Neuron 55, 325–336, July 19, 2007. DOI
10.1016/j.neuron.2007.06.028.

The research is still in its early stages and I would curious if any of you have any other real research on the subject (not new age mumbo jumbo, but real peer reviewedresearch).

If you do, just post it below.

Here are some other cool facts about the placebo effect:

  • Orange, Red and other hot colored tablets work better as stimulants.
  • Cool colored ones (blue, green, purple) work better as depressants.
  • Big pills generally work better than small pills!
  • Higher priced pills work better than lower priced pills.
  • Injections work better than tablets
  • And “branded” tablets work better than unbranded tablets!

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