Icons/Close/Hover Created with Sketch.

Introduction: The battle of the bulge is a common struggle for many Americans, with weight loss efforts often yielding frustratingly slow results or, worse yet, hitting a dead-end. In this intriguing discussion, two eminent medical experts, Dr. Ian Smith and Dr. Latt Mansor, shed light on the underlying reasons behind this metabolic conundrum and explore potential solutions to help individuals achieve a healthier weight and lifestyle.

1. Metabolic Flexibility: The Key to Weight Loss Dr. Ian Smith emphasizes that one of the primary reasons why people struggle to lose weight is a lack of metabolic flexibility. This refers to the body's ability to efficiently burn carbohydrates and fats for energy. When someone is metabolically inflexible, their body struggles to utilize both fuel sources optimally, making it more challenging to lose weight effectively.

Dr. Smith's analogy of a stove burning wood illustrates this point vividly. If you keep adding wood (calories) but fail to burn it efficiently, the excess accumulates as fat, leading to weight gain over time. The key, then, is to enhance metabolic flexibility, enabling the body to switch between fuel sources seamlessly.

2. The Impact of Modern Diets and Sedentary Lifestyles Both Dr. Smith and Dr. Mansor agree that the modern American diet, abundant in processed and synthesized ingredients, plays a significant role in disrupting metabolic function. These lab-created ingredients may cause our body's homeostatic mechanisms to falter, leading to metabolic inefficiency and weight-related issues.

Moreover, the rise in sedentary lifestyles further compounds the problem. Dr. Smith compares our bodies to sports cars, designed to be driven and moved regularly. Inactivity disrupts the body's systems, leading to various health problems.

3. Understanding Metabolites as Signaling Molecules Dr. Mansor introduces the concept of metabolites as signaling molecules, a burgeoning area of metabolic science. Metabolites are not merely sources of energy; they also act as signals that influence gene expression, protein synthesis, and hormonal regulation. Essentially, what we eat doesn't just fuel us; it can directly impact our health at the molecular level.

4. Root Causes of Metabolic Inflexibility According to Dr. Mansor, the pandemic of metabolic inflexibility and chronic disease is driven by the combination of factors such as an abundance of food, excess calories, and chronic inflammation caused by certain ingredients. These factors contribute to a dysfunctional system that manifests as obesity and other metabolic disorders.

5. The Road to a Healthier Future Dr. Smith and Dr. Mansor both stress the importance of paying attention to what we consume and how we move. Adopting a diet rich in natural, unprocessed foods and being physically active are essential steps towards improving metabolic health.

Conclusion: The struggle to lose weight can be multifaceted, but understanding the critical role of metabolic flexibility and the impact of our dietary and lifestyle choices is a crucial first step. By making mindful choices and prioritizing metabolic health, individuals can embark on a journey toward a healthier and more fulfilling life.

Remember, your body is a marvel of adaptability, and nurturing it with the right fuel and exercise can unlock its full potential for lifelong well-being. So, let's take charge of our metabolic health and embrace a healthier future together!

In this episode, you'll discover:

  • Lack of metabolic flexibility is a primary reason for weight loss struggles; enhancing the body's ability to switch between burning carbohydrates and fats is key to effective weight loss.
  • The modern American diet, rich in processed ingredients, and sedentary lifestyles contribute to metabolic inefficiency and weight-related issues.
  • Metabolites act as signaling molecules, influencing gene expression and hormonal regulation, underscoring the importance of mindful food choices for metabolic health.

Watch Now

Listen Now


Dr. Ian Smith

I believe that people are probably struggling to lose weight because they are not metabolically flexible. Because they are not able to efficiently burn carbs and to efficiently burn fats. And because they have an inefficiency, either in the carb direction or the fat direction, it makes it less easy to burn or to lose weight by burning calories.

And so, I think that people who are metabolically inflexible, having a difficult time losing weight as effectively of someone who is metabolically flexible. Um, which is why I wrote this book to try to get people to say there are things you can do to improve your metabolic flexibility. That being said, I'd love to hear what you think about it.

Dr. Latt Mansor:

Yeah, I think, um, I'm pretty much on the same page. I think it's a lot to do with the abundance of food, the excess in calories, the presence of Cedol. More studies showing Cedol driving chronic inflammation up. I think the combination of an unhealthy lifestyle, i. e. sanitary lifestyle with excess calories, hence you are increasing the storage that you have, but you're not burning.

Like, you know, going back to your example of the stove, you're putting all the wood in. but you're not burning it. So over time, this wood is getting rotten and getting, you know, getting in into this, this form where it's detrimental to the storage system now, and therefore create a dysfunctional system.

You know, when one thing goes wrong, it goes down, you know, the pathway and the cascade of event happens that drive all these chronic diseases. And what you just said about Metabolism of, you know, the 20 year old to six year old being relatively stable. That is a very interesting point. I mean, I've never read much into it, but it makes sense because nowadays, especially when we are facing a much higher life expectancy, you know, in human beings, we're seeing people.

Doing a lot of, you know, social media transformation videos, transformation pictures of people in their fifties going from overweight to completely ripped. Now, a lot of people were like, Oh, you know, good on you using the steroids and all that. But, you know, either way, like there are some people who actually put in the work and change the lifestyle and create that result. Same thing when I was doing my master's, I also wrote a thesis on sarcopenia exercise as an intervention against sarcopenia, which is muscle loss due to aging. And there are studies looking at 80 year olds, 90 year olds who have been put on rehab. uh, and strength exercise to combat their muscle loss.

And even at that age, they are able to put on muscle mass. So knowing that our body is still able to adapt to the stimulus that we put onto our body, which is in that sense, in that case would be strength training, and [00:03:00] we are able to adapt and respond to that stimulus, which is the muscle gain. So I think a lot of times when there is deficiency, when there is Inefficiency, as you said, or dysfunction.

In metabolism, in being able to flexibly, uh, flexibly use one substrate over the other. That's when the problem occurs. Now, let's draw back a little bit and pull back a little bit and look at the root cause of it. And I mentioned a little bit on what I thought was causing the, you know, metabolic inflexibility and the cause of chronic disease, essentially, what do you think? Is causing this sort of pandemic of metabolic inflexibility

Dr. Ian Smith

That's a great question. I really believe that a lot of it has to do with what we're ingesting. I do. I think that, that we are eating, a lot of, uh, synthesized ingredients, uh, a lot of processed ingredients. And I think that, you know, even though these ingredients are cheaper and more abundant.

And can be produced much faster and much greater volume. I think that it interacts with our metabolic system and the way our cells are processing. And I think that in some way they become disruptors, um, to the body's, you know, homeostatic mechanisms of being able to exist, uh, in its clearest and cleanest state possible.

And so I really do believe that it starts at the table. I think that... Uh, the chemical, uh, composition and quality in a lot of our foods and our beverages is so great. I mean, some of these products, there's almost nothing natural in them. It's just all made in a lab. And I think that that is making ourmeta metabolism and our other physiological and biochemical systems.

I think it's making them wonky, uh, and clunky. Uh, and the body is saying, well, you know, it's like putting bad gas in your car. The car's gonna run, but it's not gonna run great, you know. It's gonna run, it's just not gonna run great. It's gonna be bumpy, um, it's gonna be sputtering sometimes. And I think that that, I think that that's what's happening with us when we're eating all these different types of foods.

I also think that being sedentary is a contrib, uh, contributory factor. I think that people don't understand. That the body is like a sports car. It's built to be driven and the body needs to be driven. It needs to be moved and the more sedentary you are, that is actually opposite of what the body is designed for.

And so, you know, I, I, the best analogy is sports cars. You know, you think that you're doing a great job to a sports [00:06:00] car by not driving it. You know, I thought that I was like, wow, this is great. If you could keep it, you know, in the garage clean, Don't drive it. It will be in great condition. It's actually just the opposite When you don't drive a car for a long period of time, it starts falling apart The rubber starts to crack the seals start to leak all these different the lubrication dries All these things that make the car work Even though you're not using it.

They start becoming Destabilized and so you need to use it to keep the stability. Well, I think the same thing with us. I think that when we are overly sedentary and we are not challenging our body and challenging all of the physiological systems in the body that make us who we are and keep us who we are, when we don't do that, They start breaking down.

Dr. Latt Mansor:

Yeah. And, and the irony is because we're driven by such a materialistic world that you see most people take better care of their sports cars than their own bodies. The irony of it. And I think, you know, more and more people now, I think after pandemic, after the COVID people start to realize how important their health is, how important their loved ones are, how important it is to look after themselves.

And I think there is a huge movement around. You know, health, healthy habits, healthy contents, uh, contents around healthy foods and books and all of that, uh, which is great to see. And I think, you know, one really great thing that you mentioned there was the effect of what's on the table, right? And... You and I, scientists, physicians, we always try to explain to people what metabolism is and most of the time we're talking about foods and substrates being source of energy and fuel, and that's very easy to understand.

One area that is really hot in the Metabolic science world right now is metabolites as signaling molecules because now we are starting to see with, you know, the growth of technology, we're starting to see that these substrates, as much as it is providing us with energy, it also has a direct effect on signaling.

And when I talk about signaling, I'm talking about the effect on transcription, translation, the effect, direct effect on the DNA itself, turning on and off certain switches. And that turns on and off certain, uh, proteins and enzymes and hormones being synthesized, and therefore having a direct effect on human health.

I'm always struggle with this and this is me like trying to, to get some insight from your expertise in, you know, being a science communicator yourself. How would you explain that in a way that people can understand better, what analogy you would, use in order to, to sort of explain how metabolites can also be signaling molecule.

We sell nutrition & supplements for optimal metabolic & cognitive performance. Check us out!

Editors Choice

Atoms / Icons / List / Back / Black Created with Sketch.
Icons/Close/Hover Created with Sketch.

Help Center

We’re on a mission to help you. Let us know how we can best assist you!

Need to get in touch?

Our team will get back to you in one business day, and often times, much faster.

(Mon-Fri, 10 AM - 5 PM PST)

Call us: 1 (833) 415-4866

Text us: Text LETSGO to 803-49

Email us: care@hvmn.com