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Teen Weight Loss Solution: Effective Path to Health and Self-Confidence

Teen Weight Loss Solution: Effective Path to Health and Self-Confidence

by Erika Schwartz

Dr. Erika Schwartz provides parents with insight into the hormonal challenges that fuel teens' battles with weight and outlines her plan for protection from the perilous side effects of obesity in The Teen Weight-Loss Solution. This inspirational and scientifically sound book reveals how teens can lose weight by understanding their changing bodies and


Dr. Erika Schwartz provides parents with insight into the hormonal challenges that fuel teens' battles with weight and outlines her plan for protection from the perilous side effects of obesity in The Teen Weight-Loss Solution. This inspirational and scientifically sound book reveals how teens can lose weight by understanding their changing bodies and addressing their health needs from the inside out.

The Teen Weight-Loss Solution offers the stories of real teens coping with the heartbreaking physical and emotional consequences of obesity. Dr. Schwartz reveals that the trigger for budding weight problems in teens can often be traced to the beginning of puberty, when their bodies are overloaded with hormones that impact mood, energy, motivation, and weight gain. Teens feel condemned to exist in their fuller figures and cannot understand the hormonal correlation between their emotional havoc and their expanding bodies.

Dr. Schwartz's weight-loss solution teaches parents that they must look beyond the notion of managing their teen's weight problem with an old-fashioned forced diet and address not only body weight, but the whole individual. Parents must make the hormonal connection to obesity for their teen and help their doctor devise a plan that will help their child manage his or her health by monitoring diet, exercise, and lifestyle choices. Dr. Schwartz also reveals a revolutionary step-by-step, dose-by-dose plan for how natural hormones and supplements can be used to help achieve optimal balance of a teen's raging hormones for improved mood, energy level, and weight loss.

The Teen Weight-Loss Solution offers new hope and a tried-and-proven plan that parents can implement today to start teens on the path to both a brighter future and a lifetime of health and self-confidence.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Schwartz, a physician who specializes in women's health, takes a holistic approach to the physical ailments that plague adolescent girls. In a perfunctory five-page nod to boys at the book's end ("Boys Are Teens, Too"), Schwartz claims boys aren't the victims of peer pressure or intimidation as often as are girls-an assertion that could annoy boy experts such as William Pollack (Real Boys) or Michael Gurian (A Fine Young Man). That said, Schwartz does cover her territory well when it comes to mothers and daughters, investigating the ways hormones affect girls physically and emotionally. For problems like bloating, mood swings, acne, weight gain, irregular periods and depression, she prescribes natural progesterone, certain supplements (calcium, folate, etc.), exercise, nutrition and lifestyle changes. Schwartz comes down hard on birth control pills (which may have undesirable side effects) and Prozac-both, she says, are often over-prescribed by doctors. In fact, Schwartz explains, many doctors are unfamiliar with natural progesterone and don't know how to administer it, though it's clearly helped hundreds of girls in Schwartz's own practice. This is an eye-opening book for parents who want to help their teenage daughters explore natural methods of safely managing the weight gain, acne and hormonal changes common to female adolescence. Illus. Agent, Deborah Schneider. (On sale Aug. 17) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Although the title indicates otherwise, Schwartz (founder, International Hormone Inst.; The Hormone Solution) does not limit herself here to weight loss. She uses her experience in natural hormone therapy to ensure the overall wellness of teenage girls, demonstrating through the use of short patient vignettes that regulating hormones during the adolescent years helps girls feel physically better and mentally clearer. Losing weight is just an added benefit of regulated hormones. Parents, especially mothers, are encouraged to assist their teenage daughters; good communication and exercise are promoted as complements to natural hormone therapy. Schwartz does include one chapter on the importance of fathers in the lives of their teenage daughters and one chapter on hormonal imbalance in teenage boys, although neither is as in-depth as the earlier ones. Suitable for all public libraries supporting health and wellness collections. Rachel M. Minkin, SIS, Univ. of Pittsburgh Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.93(d)

Read an Excerpt

The Teen Weight-Loss Solution
The Safe and Effective Path to Health and Self-Confidence

Chapter One

Teen Hormones -- The Big Bang

It arrives without warning like a whirlwind bursting into your life and leaving a trail of turmoil. It's a Hormone Storm -- Mother Nature's way of announcing the onset of puberty. Your sweet little daughter is now an adolescent. Her physical and emotional presence will never be the same.

Hundreds of hormones are raging through her body -- not just insulin, cortisol, and growth hormones, which have been at work inside her from the beginning of life, but now sex hormones -- estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.

Coping with adolescence is a challenge for every parent and teen. A crucial foundation for surviving these difficult years is understanding the role that hormones play in orchestrating the momentous changes taking place within your daughter.

Making the hormone connection is the difference between surviving well or surrendering to this turmoil and spending the better part of the next decade in teen hell.

The Back Story: When Does the Hormone Story Start?

Life begins with a monumental mix of genetics and hormones. Simplistically stated, an egg and a sperm get together in your womb and forty weeks later become a newborn child.

The master plan, the blueprint for your child, is in the genetic code found in the two cells that start it all. The egg and the sperm come with an astonishingly complex array of instructions for the creation of a human being. There are instructions on how to create and develop every cell of every organ, how to assemble the cells into organs, and how to program the fetus to function outside the womb.

It all translates into this beautiful little girl you hold in amazement in the delivery room, the child you believe is a miracle come true. She certainly is, but to understand her and what she will go through at puberty and adolescence, we must remove some of the mystery.


Creating a child is not unlike assembling a piece of furniture from IKEA. The "how-to" instructions are in the two cells (egg and sperm) we all start from. During the forty weeks in the womb, the instructions are read and the pieces assembled. From the smallest screws -- in our case, the cells -- to the largest parts (brain, bones, liver, and skin), the body comes together from the blueprint in the sperm and egg. Like the IKEA furniture, it won't be assembled properly unless the instructions are followed. In our case, our hormones supervise and implement the assembly. It takes hundreds of hormones, working together, to transform the miracle into reality.

In the womb, sex hormones determine whether the fetus will be a boy or a girl. As if exhausted by having to make such a momentous decision, the sex hormones then become inert and remain in hibernation until puberty.

This quiescent period is crucial for the healthy development of your child. Sex hormones must stay out of the way to allow the other hormones to get their work done. Organs have to grow, the brain has to mature, and physical strength and fine motor coordination have to develop. Before your bundle of joy can become physically and mentally ready for sex hormones to come into the picture, he or she has to crawl, walk, run, become toilet-trained, stop sucking on a pacifier, and have basic social and verbal skills.

The moment sex hormones wake up and get into the picture everything changes.

This is puberty.

Most often the process of hormonal awakening begins between ages ten and twelve. It can be as early as nine or as late as sixteen, depending on your child. As we describe the process of hormone development in teens later in this chapter, you will see how often this normal variation occurs. Genetic, environmental, dietary, socioeconomic, and innumerable other factors come into play to determine when puberty starts.


During a routine pediatric examination, nine-year-old Marcie was found to have a little swelling under her right nipple. Although not usually an alarmist, the pediatrician ordered an ultrasound of the area. Marcie's mother opted to bring her to me.

There was nothing wrong with Marcie. The swelling under her right nipple was normal. Her sex hormones were starting to awaken, and the first visible sign was breast buds. Their appearance on only one side should not have been of serious concern. Sometimes Mother Nature doesn't do things symmetrically. More than 35 percent of the time breast buds appear more prominently on one side.

I often see children entering puberty who have been brought into my office by anxious mothers. Taking their daughters to the pediatrician is often a source of stress rather than reassurance. Many physicians tend to be alarmist, and the profession often overdiagnoses disease instead of offering support and information.

The incidence of breast cancer in ten-year-olds is infinitesimal. A breast infection does not present as a minimally tender lump. It usually is associated with redness, swelling, heat, and pain. When asked, two out of three pediatricians state that they are cautious owing to legal issues rather than patient safety.

Regardless of whether your child is nine or sixteen, the physical signs of sex hormone awakening are similar. They may not appear in the same order in every child, and that does not make her strange, unusual, or sick.

Sex hormone awakening heralds puberty and the teenage years. Following is a list of the most common physical signs that estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone have woken up in your child.

  • Appearance of breast buds: Marcie's story is a good example of common reactions to the unexpected appearance of breast buds.
  • Appearance of body hair: Armpit hair, pubic hair, hair on the arms and legs, upper lip hair, occasionally facial hair -- depending on genetics. The quality of body hair also changes from fuzzy to coarse.
The Teen Weight-Loss Solution
The Safe and Effective Path to Health and Self-Confidence
. Copyright © by Erika Schwartz. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Erika T. Schwartz, M.D., author of Natural Energy, The Hormone Solution, and The 30-Day Natural Hormone Plan is a health care pioneer and key opinion leader in the emerging field of integrative medicine and the use of natural hormones. A consummate clinician and patient advocate, Dr. Schwartz has cared for more than fifty thousand patients over twenty-seven years and provides educational and clinical services nationally via her website, www.DrErika.com. A leading expert on natural/bioidentical hormones and their use in total health for teens and adults, Dr. Schwartz has appeared on The View, the CBS Early Show, MSNBC, the Fox News Channel, PBS, and CNN, and her writings and quotes have appeared in Vogue, Newsweek, the Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. Dr. Schwartz earned her medical degree from SUNY Downstate and fulfilled her postgraduate training in internal medicine and critical care at Kings County Hospital Center, Brooklyn, New York.

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