The nutritional deficiency behind obesity

You eat right, get regular movement, and keep healthy habits... but still find yourself gaining weight.

If that's your story, you're not alone. Many patients come to my clinic for the first time describing this exact problem.

So what gives?

The answer might not be in what you do or even in what you eat. Not entirely anyway -- because part of the problem could be your vitamin D levels. And if you're deficient, as most people are, you could be in for some disappointing news every time you step on the scale.

Just ask the 4,659 senior women who took part in a new study, because the ones who had the lowest D levels at the start gained an average of 2 pounds over 4.5 years.

That may not sound like much, and to some extent it isn't. But over the course of a few decades or a lifetime, little bits of weight gain can add up. In fact, the women in the study who were deficient in D were already an average of 7 pounds heavier than those with optimal levels at the start of the study.

That means by the end, these low D women were nearly 10 pounds heavier than those who had just the right amount of the sunshine vitamin.

The study also confirmed something I see in my own clinic all the time: most people are D deficient. In this case, 80 percent of the women in the study had blood levels below 30 nanograms per millimeter.

The researchers only looked at women, but other studies have found a link between low D and weight gain in men and women alike, and across age groups.

But while D is important to all of us, low D is especially troublesome for seniors since it's critical to nearly all the functions that older folks worry about most -- including bone, brain, and heart health, just to name three of the biggies.

The safest and most consistent way to get the D you need is through a supplement. Just forget anything you've read in the guidelines, since many people need five or even 10 times the amounts recommended by the Institute of Medicine.

A holistic doctor can test your levels, find out how much you need and help you choose the best way to get it.

For complete testing of all your nutrients and hormones including vitamin D -- and for help with weight loss no matter what the cause -- contact the Stengler Center for Integrative Medicine.

Speaking of D, I have another reason you need to make sure you get what you need coming up next.

Keep reading!