Metabolic Health and Wellness at The Ash Center in NYC
By Taylor Smith
When considering health and “fitness,” many people look to the scale for answers and stop there. New research suggests that metabolic health is the true marker, not only for determining a healthy BMI (body mass index), but also for significantly lowering one’s risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and the onset of dementia.
So, what is metabolic health?
There’s no standard definition for metabolic health, but, in a study published in Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders, researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill stated that metabolic health is described as “having ideal levels of blood sugar, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, blood pressure, and waist circumference, without the use of medications.”
Functional medicine physician Dr. Gabrielle Lyon practices “muscle-centric medicine,” (https://drgabriellelyon.com), a term she coined to describe her whole-body/whole-mind approach towards addressing body composition as it relates to muscle development and maintenance, adequate protein intake, sleep, mental wellness, the nervous system, and longevity. Her New York City practice at The Ash Center for Comprehensive Medicine (http://www.ashcenter.com) aids patients in “leveraging cutting-edge science to precisely fine-tune metabolism, balance hormones, and transform body composition.”
The Center’s medical director is Gabrielle’s husband, Dr. Anthony J. Lyon. Dr. Lyon himself is a sought-after integrative medicine physician and neurofunctional musculoskeletal specialist. According to their website, Dr. Anthony Lyon “offers patients a more effective means to conquer chronic conditions and realize greater energy. He accomplishes this by linking together the essentials crucial to re-claiming and elevating health: the metabolic, the mental, the structural, and the adaptive.”
Sleep hygiene plays a significant role in metabolic health. Over time, sleep deprivation wreaks havoc on hormones, artery health, and how much fat is stored on the body. Lifestyle modifications like sleeping in a dark room, not using any light-emitting technology in the 60 minutes leading up to bedtime, keeping the bedroom temperature cold, and even wearing a sleep mask can help to encourage a deeper night’s rest.
Another way in which one can take steps towards improving their metabolic health is by lifting weights. Greater muscle mass increases your resting metabolism rate, which translates into burning more calories, energy, and fat while you are at rest, sitting at your desk, or reading a book. Weight training also helps to strengthen bones and connective tissues, which encourage strength and mobility as we age. Men and women naturally loose muscle mass as they age, which leads to a loss of balance and increased risk of injury. To get started, people should look for classes or trainers specializing in beginners and learn to lift safely. Ideally, resistance work and weight training should become a part of your weekly routine, in combination with a well-rounded diet that includes adequate levels of protein intake at every meal.
Many people who take active steps towards improving their metabolic health find that they feel physically stronger overall, which, in turn, can have an impact on mood, sleep habits, and stress levels.
The Ash Center is located at 800A Fifth Avenue (at 61st Street), Suite 205 in New York, NY. To schedule an appointment, call 212.758.3200.