Dr Hilary Jones is in the Twitter hot seat for another health Q&A with LighterLife

October 3, 2012 - Dr Hilary Jones, Health & Nutrition

Another month and another health Q&A with the fabulous Dr Hilary Jones.

The monthly web chat takes place on the LighterLife Twitter feed during which our LighterLife Twitter followers tweets us their health related questions using the #AskDrHilary hashtag. All questions are answered immediately by Dr Hilary Jones himself.

We are of course aware that not everyone is on Twitter, therefore we always open up the Q&A to our Facebook community.

Dr Hilary started the web chat with this snippet of encouragement:

Temptations can get in the way of weight-loss management but we’re not going to let that happen.

How many people end up B12 deficient during/after their LighterLife journey?

None that I know of as LighterLife Foodpacks are richer in b group vitamins than an average UK diet.

I would like to know whether my liver function increases because of phenobarbital/phenytoin and why?

Some drugs are broken down by the liver and just like alcohol can have an affect on the enzymes that are measurable in blood tests. It’s a not unexpected finding but please talk to your GP if worried.

I have a pain down my spine, the pain is intense, could this be due to the spinal block I had 4 years ago?

This is highly unlikely – reactions to modern epidural and spinal injections are extremely rare.

I was on LighterLife but now can’t stop eating. I don’t want to put my weight back on. How can I get focused before it’s too late?

Contact your weight-management counsellor who can remind you of your previous unhealthy mindset about food. This should help to curb your cravings and binges.

I wonder if you can tell me what effects going through the change can have on my body. I haven’t had a period for ages. I’ve completed menopause tests but they have come back negative – what else can it be?

Blood tests around menopause can be misleading and need to be repeated as hormonal levels surge at this time. If you are menopausal your metabolism slows and you tend to put weight on around your middle. I suggest a second blood test and possible HRT, as well as dietary advice.

Can the metabolism be kick started again in menopausal women?

Yes, by boosting your regular exercise levels. Metabolism slows down but not by that much. Being more active returns it to healthy levels and helps you burn fat.

I though HRT was not the best option anymore?

It depends on the individual entirely. If you have moderate to severe symptoms, HRT is amazing. However, it will not help you lose weight on its own.

What about the risk of breast cancer. The Doctor’s think my Mum’s breast cancer was related to HRT. She’d been on it for a long time.

Fears about HRT and breast cancer have been greatly exaggerated. In fact, because you tend to have more checks when on HRT, early detection is likely. All women on HRT should have regular check-ups because of the very small increased risk of breast cancer observed during the time women are actually taking it. In my opinion, the benefits out way the risks.

I followed the programme for 4 months and lost 4 stone, but my hair has been falling out now for over two months.

Don’t worry, this temporary hair loss is not uncommon. Any change to your system can cause hair follicles to go into their resting phase but they will grow back. This also happens with preganancy too and is very temporary.

My son is 15 and 5 foot 7 inches tall. He only weighs about 5 and a half stone. He eats a lot but can’t seem to put on weight – what can I do?

Yes he is under-weight but were both of his parents similarly slim at his age? His doctor should check this out to rule out any other factors.

I lost weight on LighterLife but unfortunately put some back on. I have tried several times to restart the program but find that after a couple of days I start getting bad cramps in my feet and legs at night. Any suggestions?

See your doctor to check your circulation and nervous system but if all is well I can see no problem restarting the programme. It could be that your cramps are related to being over weight rather than any treatment and do remember to complete Management as this will give you the tools to maintain your weight loss.

Why aren’t Coeliac’s diagnosed earlier?

Coeliac disease affects about one in one hundred people. But some much more mildly than others. It doesn’t always show in childhood only in later life. Consequently, not all coeliacs are diagnosed early. Luckily, a gluten free diet solves most problems.

I run frequently and would like to know the best way to strengthen my back as I always seem to be in pain.

Jogging can worsen back pain particularly if you run on roads rather than soft ground. Do back extension exercises such as salmon flips and use a roman chair exerciser to strengthen the muscles which support your spine.

I’ve started running outside but my knees seem to be taking a bashing. Is running bad for your joints?

Joints are made to be moved. Ensure you run on soft ground and wear sorbothane inserts in the soles of your shoes Shops like runnerd need can advise with specialist help. Carry on running!

Since losing four stone on LighterLife about 3 years ago I have developed debilitating numbness in my fingers when cold, even from the fridge – why is this?

This isn’t connected to your weight-loss which can only be a good thing but if you have any underlying condition predisposing you to sensitivity to the cold, loss of fatty tissue will make it worse. See your Doctor and ask about an under active thyroid or Raynaud’s disease.

I’m a management client but have just had a baby. I am breastfeeding but is there a programme I can follow yet?

Not at this stage as you should not interrupt satisfactory breast feeding with significant dietary change. A healthy natural diet by which I mean a well balanced eating plan, is a good idea. The baby’s nutrition is paramount.

I lost 10 stone in 5 months on LighterLife but got gallstones as a result and have had my gallbladder removed. Does removal slow down metabolism?

No, gallbladder removal does not affect metabolism at all. Also, it’s a popular myth that gallstones occur when people lose weight.

Dr Hilary ended the chat by thanking the community for their really interesting questions.

Dr Hilary is back next month for another live Twitter chat. If you have any questions about how to achieve healthy weight loss then get them ready! If this has convinced you to try LighterLife please visit the LighterLife website to find out more…

4 thoughts on “Dr Hilary Jones is in the Twitter hot seat for another health Q&A with LighterLife

elizabeth shelley

I have tried several.diets and found I had gained weight what is different about this one?


    Hi Elizabeth, thank you for your message. Our LighterLife programmes provide a uniquely high level of support and are dedicated not just simply to weight loss, but to enabling you to maintain a healthier weight in the future. You benefit from weekly meetings with a qualified Weight-Management Counsellor, which help you identify your own personal reasons for overeating. Once you know what your triggers are, you can start dealing with them without turning to food – key to keeping the weight off in the long term. Do let us know if you require anything else. Best wishes, LL.

f mulcahy

After reading the above comments about lack of vitamin B12 and the lighterlife diet I Just felt that I had to contact you immediately. I completed the Lighter life diet and lost 3 stones in 3 months. Shortly after I developed vitamin B 12 deficiency.
While out clothe shopping I met a lady who told me that she had completed the Lighter life diet and she had also developed vitamin B12 deficiency. like me she also has to have 3 monthly injections of B12 I believe that this might be a common side effect of this diet. I would like to do this diet again but Im not sure if it would be good for me Im not sure how I would go about it.


    Hi there, in response to your blog comment dated 6th June 2013:
    Lighterlife takes the nutritional compositional integrity of its products very seriously. Guidance laid down in Codex Alimentarius (Codex Stan 203-1995 to be specific) dictate the acceptable and minimum levels of nutrients that total dietary replacement using VLCDs should provide. Our products provide greater than 100% of the RDA of Vitamin B12 and there is absolutely no evidence to suggest that VLCDs contribute to the compromised B12 status. Of course you must remember to follow the plan properly, including appropriate preparation instructions and consuming all 4 packs.
    If you have developed pernicious anaemia (as a result of b12 deficiency) you will need to see your doctor of course, but this is far more likely to be due to an autoimmune or bowel disorder than it is going on a completely fortified weight loss plan.
    I hope this reply has been of help. Do get in touch if you have any more queries or concerns.
    Best wishes,
    Team LighterLife

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