Weight Loss Expert Interview with Dr. Lori Shemek

Portrait of Dr. Lori Shemek by The Healthy RD

When I branched out into the world of online health, one amazing benefit that I had was connecting with health experts across the globe such as Dr. Lori Shemek.

This group of experts is changing how medicine is done, and most importantly, changing people’s health and vitality. Weight loss is challenging but much more approachable with the right professional. Here is a weight loss expert interview that shows you how to get your life back.

This week, I am honored and excited to interview the bestselling author and specialist in the field of weight loss; Dr. Lori Shemek.

Dr. Lori Shemek is a dynamic writer and speaker who is changing the way the world eats and lives. Dr. Lori has written the bestselling book, How to Fight Fatflammation.  She is endorsed by foremost experts in the field of health, including Dr. David Perlmutter, JJ Virgin, and Tosca Reno.

The world is full of health advice, some good, some not.  I love how Dr. Shemek’s book is based on the best science out there and how to truly help people get well.

Dr. Lori and I connected on Twitter a couple of years ago and I admire her strength, her kindness, and her unique and practical approach to health.

Thank you so much for taking the time to let me interview you.

First of all, I want to thank you Heidi for your kind words.  You are one of my favorite nutrition experts and a wonderful friend.

That means so much to me, thank you, Lori! What are the most important facts people should be aware of when looking for health information?

It is so easy to go down that rabbit hole of health information or investigation on the Internet and unfortunately, much of it is nonsense, outdated, or simply useless. It is important to look at the source of the information such as the expert’s credibility. Many times you will run across sites or ‘experts’ making wild claims and they haven’t either the research, prior experience, or education in that field. So many ‘experts’ feel that if they are even tangentially connected to the information, they then are a bonafide expert.  I would also caution the reader to be aware of bias.  This is a common issue in the health space and this includes research. So always bear in mind the possibility of stating ‘facts’ for dollars.

You are incredibly smart, but also relatable.  Your book tells a story that people can understand and apply to their lives. What inspired you to become an author?

I grew up with a single mother, an absent father, and two younger brothers of which I was the oldest. My sweet mother had a constant stream of different health conditions throughout my childhood. The choices my mother made added to her dwindling health such as she smoked a pack and a half of cigarettes a day, she was very overweight bordering on obese, her diet was based largely on sugar and refined carbohydrates

Additionally, she was under enormous chronic stress, she was raising 3 young children with no support, no family, no husband, and very little income. I remember often walking into her bedroom and seeing her lying there in the dark on the bed suffering. However, I knew intuitively, even as a young girl, that she could make different choices. Sadly, my mother passed away at the very young age of 36 leaving behind three young children with literally nowhere to go. Unfortunately, my brothers and I were forever separated and would never live in the same household again – we all ultimately lived in different states.

It was at my mother’s memorial service that I knew my mother could have made different choices and that she just needed guidance and self-love to make healthier ones. That was the moment I decided I wanted to help others make better choices.  My mother was my motivation and why I have written two books in her honor and for anyone who needs to make better choices. Our lives ultimately condense down to the choices we make.

Lori has been featured on almost every major news network out there.  What was your favorite interview and why?

Thank you for sharing that Heidi.  I really loved them all but I have to say that my very favorite would be my appearance on The Doctors TV show.  It was the first time I was in a national debate on the pros/cons of intermittent fasting in front of millions and it was very lively, to say the least!

Your book describes how inflammation drives the obesity crisis we are in and how we can solve it with practical approaches.  What is the first step for people to take if they are tired, overweight, inflamed, and struggling?

Low-level inflammation is the core underlying cause of most illnesses, diseases, faster-aging, and weight gain. If you cut your finger, for example, an enormous amount of inflammatory molecules are released, the wound heals and all is well – this is acute inflammation – a necessary, healing immune response.  Then there is a type of cellular inflammation called silent inflammation. This type of inflammation is like a sore on the inside of the body that never heals. Unlike acute inflammation, which emits a substantial release of inflammatory molecules, silent inflammation emits just a trickle and it is 24/7; it never goes away. Even our fat cells (our largest endocrine organ), if inflamed, release molecules that not only slow down the metabolism, causing weight gain but promoting the potential for poor health.

The first step is to reduce and reverse low-level cellular inflammation. Remember that our cells need nutrition to create energy in the cell. If we do not have that fuel, we will not have the energy, or motivation to do much in life, and that includes exercise or choosing healthy foods.

Choosing specific foods that reverse inflammation is key to optimizing cell health, including mitochondrial health and weight loss. Healthy mitochondria are a crucial part of an optimal health span.  Examples of specific foods to add to your grocery cart that fight inflammation are avocados, leafy greens, wild salmon, berries, nuts, whole eggs, and many more.

The science behind the ketogenic diet is exploding and now has many areas of application.  Can you describe some benefits you have seen first-hand with ketogenesis and even ketone supplements?

The ketogenic diet is a very low-carb, moderate-protein, and high-fat diet. I have my clients use this form of eating to powerfully change their health. Ketones are the active component, if you will, in this diet or in the supplement form. I highly recommend both for those who want to achieve a healthier life.  Some of the benefits are:  reversing inflammation, weight loss, improved focus/clarity, better brain health, heart health, marked improvement in migraines, blood sugar balance, better sleep, more energy, less joint pain, helps to stop cravings for sugar, and much more. So you can see why I’m so excited about and currently writing a book on this subject!

When you are not busy writing, podcasting, or coaching clients, what is your favorite way to make sure you are healthy and not over-stressed?

Life is busy for many of us so it is imperative that we are proactive in reducing our stress on a daily basis. Each day I walk my dog and it really helps me to de-stress.  I also practice deep breathing and guided meditation.  I highly recommend guided meditation for those, like me, who have trouble with traditional meditation.  I also exercise most days of the week as a combination of strength training and HIIT workouts – exercise is the #1 stress reduction tool.

Sugar is definitely a problem in our culture and even is involved in making our skin age faster. In a world of hidden sugars, what is the most important thing for people to watch out for?

Yes, hidden sugar is huge. Many clients initially come to me frustrated that they can’t stop their sugar cravings – it is not their fault. You can eliminate sugar but if you are not reading labels or know the sneaky names they have ascribed to sugar, it then becomes a hidden source and unknowingly, too many, reinforces that sugar addiction.  For example, most breads, yogurts, and condiments are very high in sugar.

If you were Queen for a day, what one change would you make?

If I were queen for a day, I would ensure that each individual had a healthy balanced diet for the day so that they can experience a better quality of life.  If each of us ate a diet that was nutrient-dense, it would promote health and powerful neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine to improve mood.  The result would be a happier life for all.

Want to learn more about Dr. Lori Shemek?  Read more on her website

Follow her on Twitter, on Facebook, and Instagram.

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