Working with Lisa and Lucho reminds me of the quote in the Talmud, "Over every blade of grass there is an angel whispering, grow, grow, grow. "

Every workout session, I see their smiling faces and hear their voices urging me to "go, go, go!"  Thank you for putting me on the path to the best health and fitness I've experienced in my adult life ... and I'm 51!

Debbie Phillips, Executive and Life Coach
Martha's Vineyard, MA
Hi Lucho:

I just received my diploma for passing my Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist examination. I am beyond proud and excited. Thank you so much for your quick turn around time and for getting it to me so quickly. I have several other Nutrition and Personal Training degrees from national certification boards such as NFPT and ISSA. Needless to say, I have been exposed to and studied many different nutrition programs and publications. Your course materials and your visual presentations and seminars are my favorites by far. You have such a vast knowledge in nutrition, yet you present all the information in such a straightforward, easy to understand and enjoyable manner. I am so impressed that you also include a section on NLP and Hemispheric Integration. Not only is this something very unique for a Nutritionist to possess knowledge of, but I find it to be the thing that will set me apart from other certified nutrition experts. I applaud you for understanding and emphasizing the importance of mastering this aspect of selling and building client rapport as well.

I have used your program on hundreds of people, from world champion boxers to regular "week end warriors". Your program is outstanding and when followed correctly I have found it to be 100% successful!!!

I thank you again and applaud you for your continued commitment to increase the quality of people's lives through health, fitness and nutrition.

Unni Greene,
Dear Lucho,

I want to express how much I appreciate your certification program for Fitness Nutrition. The manual of study provided was comprehensive, and the videos very informative, instructing the prospective nutritionist in how to instruct and educate their clientele. I love the software program!

I have, to date, designed close to a hundred menu plans for both men and women of various ages with a variety of nutritional needs. By taking body fat measurements (Skindex calipers) at regular intervals, inputting the information into the client’s software menu program and reading the resultant graph, I am able to make reasonable deductions as to whether the client is progressing in the right direction toward his/her goals in regards to healthy body composition (fat/muscle). By offering this type of accountability to my clients, they are more apt to stay “on track.”

Also, I very much appreciate your expertise and years of experience. You have always been very available, helpful and professional in answering my questions and concerns regarding my clientele.

I enjoy helping people toward their nutritional goals and healthy lifestyle menu planning, and you have provided the very best in tools—your program and yourself!!

Thank you many times over!


Sherry Zedlitz, CFNS

Vitamin B12: Does it really increase energy & help you lose weight?

The simple answer as far as increasing our energy, is yes, due mainly to the fact that more and more Americans are deficient in Vitamin B12. There is not a solid body of evidence supporting the idea B12 helps you lose weight, but it may help if you are deficient in B12, as deficiencies have been shown to cause fatigue as well as a reduced rate of metabolism.

Vitamin B12, or Cobalamin, is the largest and most complex vitamin we’ve isolated and studied. Deficiencies may lead to pernicious anemia, poor appetite, failure to thrive (growth failure in children), tiredness and reduced energy, nervousness, depression, sleep disorders, changes in mood, and more.

Here’s a little background. Your body depends on vitamin B12 for a multitude of functions:

  • It helps maintain normal energy levels
  • It is involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats
  • It supports alertness, and other neurological activity
  • It works with homocysteine levels for healthy heart function
  • It reduces stress and may promote sleep
  • It is involved in optimum immune function

Vitamin B12 is necessary for carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism. It helps in the formation and regeneration of red blood cells, which is how it helps prevent anemia. B12 maintains a healthy nervous system; promotes growth in children; and increases energy. Not available in plants, this vitamin is found in animal sources including beef, liver, blue cheese, eggs, fish, milk, and milk products.

Because Vitamin B12 is only found in animal sources, vegans are especially prone to B12 deficiency, as they depend on plants for all their nutrients. (I suggest foods fortified with B12 for my clients who are vegans: some breakfast cereals and plant milks.)

The natural process of aging, or getting older, causes there to be less available B12 in your blood. This is due to the lining of your stomach gradually losing its ability to produce hydrochloric acid, necessary to release vitamin B12 from your food.

There are other contributing factors to our reduced B12 status. Popping antacids such as Tums, or taking anti-ulcer drugs that lower stomach acid secretion will reduce the ability to absorb vitamin B12.

Another cause of reduced B12 levels in some people is “food-cobalamin malabsorption syndrome.” This can happen when the stomach lining loses its ability to create intrinsic factor, which is a protein that binds to B12 so that it can be absorbed in the small intestine. Often, patients that undergo gastric bypass surgery lose their ability to make intrinsic factor as it is made in the lower part of the stomach, which is often removed in such surgeries.

Very low B12 intakes and/or the inability to absorb B12 (such as seen in the two cases stated above), can cause anemia and nervous system damage.

So, I usually recommend vegans, anyone suspecting B12 deficiency, and all folks over 60, to take a supplement of B12. It is important to take at least 10 mcgs per day, (it is a water soluble nutrient, so taking more has little downside risk). Also, at the same time, take a good Vitamin B-complex, as it is important to supplement all of the B vitamins together -they are integrative in their processes. An over-consumption of one B vitamin can counterbalance the others.

So, the bottom line is: While B12 may not be the universal magical energy-panacea I often see claimed, a deficiency of this nutrient certainly needs to be ruled out. And it may just be exactly what you need!

By now you know that we do not believe in the one-size-fits-all approach to anything. Try supplementing with B12 and see what difference(s), if any, you feel. Note that it takes quite some time to become B12 deficient, so if after a month or so of taking the product, you go off of it and you notice no difference in energy, overall well being, etc. it may not mean that you did not need to supplement, it just may be that you have not been off of the supplement long enough to become deficient.  However, if you notice a marked difference, chances are you may have been one of the many who is deficient in this vitamin.

Resources and Links:

  1. “Are vitamin B-12 injections helpful for weight loss?“ http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/vitamin-b12-injections/AN01400
  2. Foods high in B12: http://www.healthaliciousness.com/articles/foods-high-in-vitamin-B12.php
  3. National Institutes of Health: Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/vitaminb12/
  4. Wikipedia: B12: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B12
  5. B12 Studies: www.Medscape.com http://search.medscape.com/news-search?newSearchHeader=1&queryText=B12

© 2012 Lucho Crisalle, CEO, Exercise & Nutrition Works, Inc.

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