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Dr. Sara Gottfried & Jonathan Bailor : Why Is Staying Slim Harder with Each Passing Year?

Jonathan Bailor: Hey everyone. Jonathan Bailor here coming at you live from my bedroom. What, something new. And Dr. Sara Gottfried is joining me in my bedroom, but remotely so the wife is not upset. Sara, welcome.

Dr. Sara Gottfried: Thank you. Yeah, the husband’s not upset either. It’s all [inaudible 00:00:26] here.

Jonathan Bailor: I love it, I love it. Well, Sara, I wanted to get you as close to in person as possible to chat about this because it’s an issue that keeps coming up and I think we all face and that’s despite the fact that we get wiser, and wiser, and wiser as we get older, and older, and older. It seems like it’s getting harder, and harder, and harder to stay healthy and to keep the pounds off. What’s going on?

Dr. Sara Gottfried: Well, I would say three things. Number one, your hormones and metabolism. Number two, environmental toxins. We get more of those as we age. And then number three, organ reserve. So those are the top three biggies.

Jonathan Bailor: So certainly as we age hormones change and if you had to put a percentage on each of those three things — obviously this is going to get a little unscientific, but just given your decades of experience what would be the ratio of impact does each have?

Dr. Sara Gottfried: Well, if I had to pick a number — and I’m MIT bioengineer so I don’t like to speculate, but let me try here — I would say the impact of environmental toxins is much huger than we ever expected. Let me give me a little science as a way of answering this. We know that this whole idea that eating too much, eating too many calories is wrong. In fact, I know a really famous guy who’s writing a book about this. And we also know that the calories that we’re consuming have actually gone down recently. So the obesity epidemic you can’t blame just on a positive energy balance. I think Gary Taubes has instructed us about this. So we’re looking at these other factors and there are a number of other factors.

In addition to those three I mentioned, there’s also the microbiome. There’s also genetics. But if we had to look at just those three, I think that food does account for the problem with staying slim as we get older, choosing the wrong foods. The question of hormones and metabolism I think is maybe like a third of the total. And then the endocrine destructors, I would say is another third. Organ reserve, maybe 10 percent.

Jonathan Bailor: Okay. And the reason I ask that is because it seems like the media is so quick to latch on to these environmental factors in terms of worry about this, no worry about this, now this week worry about this, now this week worry about that. And I see so often it’s easy to focus on — I don’t want to call them little things because I think that might be down playing them too much. But I often get people asking me questions about well should I use this kind of water bottle or that kind of water bottle while they’re still eating a bunch of sugar.

Dr. Sara Gottfried: Right. I would call that rearranging the deck shooters on the Titanic. I totally agree. We need to focus on kind of the more global strategy rather than just micro focusing on one thing. And it’s true that we need to reduce our exposure to pesticides, and herbicides, and GMOs and get smarter about how we take care of the molecular sects that’s happening between our hormones and our receptors because we know that endocrine disruptors mess with that. But I also think you’re right sugar is going to screw up your insulin just as much as the endocrine disruptors so I appreciate where that question’s coming from.

Jonathan Bailor: I love it, Sara. Well, let’s pause this chat. We will pick up once I get my tongue back and we will continue to see what’s the ratio here and what should we be worried. Sound good?

Dr. Sara Gottfried: Sounds good.

Jonathan Bailor: All right. Thanks, Sara. Chat with you soon.