10 Unexpected Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Weight
You’ve been doing everything right—at least you think you have. You’re eating healthy, counting calories, working out, but the scale still won’t budge. You’ve tried a variety of diets and workouts, but you keep hitting that dreaded weight loss plateau. Not shedding pounds when you’re doing everything to make it work can be very frustrating.
When this happens it’s best to take stock of your habits and behaviours to find out where exactly the problem lies.
Why You’re Not Losing Weight
Instead of experimenting with different diets, you ought to rethink your lifestyle and those seemingly insignificant habits you think have no connection to weight loss. These random everyday habits could be sabotaging your efforts to get fitter and healthier.
Check out the following list of reasons why your weight loss goals could be stalling. If you’re guilty of these little mistakes, don’t fret. It’s simple enough to make healthy changes to your lifestyle.
1. You’re not sleeping enough.
Adequate sleep is essential for virtually every function of your body. If you don’t get the required seven to eight hours of sleep every night, you could be dealing with a number of health conditions, including weight gain. Studies show sleep deprivation can result in weight gain, so get some shut-eye to lose those extra pounds.
2. You don’t eat enough protein.
There’s plenty of research supporting the weight loss results of high-protein diets. When you eat a meal that largely comprises of protein, you tend to feel full for longer. It also prevents muscle loss when you’re losing weight. Your body also spends more energy to metabolize protein compared to carbohydrates and fat. This is why eating protein-rich foods will make you burn more calories.
3. You’re not working out regularly.
After a particularly tough workout and a week of healthy meals, you’ll probably feel like you deserve a break. You treat yourself to some of your favourite junk foods, and avoid the gym again for a while. This isn’t really great for your weight loss plan. You need to exercise regularly if you want to see results. Try different activities and sports if you’re bored of the same routine. Switching your routine will keep you motivated, and make sure your muscles are always challenged. A combination of cardio and strength training with high-intensity interval training at times can be really effective to help you lose weight.
Getting a good rest after a workout is important, but make sure you don’t skip more than two days of exercise.
4. You’re stressed out.
Stress is one of the worst things you can put your body through, and unfortunately, it can have a negative effect on weight loss as well. Excessive stress wreaks havoc on the body. Studies suggest stress is linked to weight gain because it increases the production of cortisol in your body. Cortisol is a stress hormone that raises your insulin levels, making your blood sugar drop, and increases your cravings for sugary, fatty foods. Cortisol also slows down your metabolism. Stress leads to more fat storage in the abdominal area.
5. You spend too much time at your desk.
Sitting all day is a health hazard which can lead to illnesses like obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. You may not realize it, but a sedentary lifestyle could also be keeping you from losing weight. Studies show that nothing—not even exercise—can inhibit the damage caused to your health by sitting all day. Take frequent breaks, stretch at your desk, and take walks during your lunch break. Standing desks are also a great option for those who don’t want to be immobile all day.
6. You watch TV while you eat.
Most of us love watching our favourite TV shows while we eat dinner, but research shows these activities are not compatible. According to a study by Harvard researchers, we tend to eat a lot more when we’re distracted. Researchers say we should be mindful and focus on nothing but our food when we eat. This allows the brain to process how much you consume, and recognize signs of feeling full. So, pause that TV show marathon when you’re eating, and take pleasure in your meal while eating at the table.
7. You don’t drink enough water.
Drinking more water is a common weight loss tip in both traditional and fad diets because it really plays a big role in weight loss. Drinking water helps suppress appetite, and prevents you from overeating. When you don’t drink enough water, your kidneys can’t function at their normal capacity due to dehydration. As a result, your body needs extra support from the liver. With the liver working so hard, most of the fat you consume is stored instead of being metabolized. Drinking cold water is also known to speed up metabolism.
8. You don’t watch your portion sizes.
You may be eating healthy foods, but if you load your plate with too much, you’ll end up consuming way too many calories. Eat small, frequent meals to lose weight. Some clever tricks to limit your portion sizes: eat in small plates; save half your meal as leftovers for the next day; buy the kids’ meal when you eat out.
9. You drink diet soda.
You might think you’re making the healthier choice by drinking diet soda, but you’re actually jeopardizing your diet. Diet soda is marketed as a healthier alternative to sugary soda, but although calorie-free, studies show it can actually lead to weight gain, and make you crave more sugar. A paper published in the journal Neuroscience states: “Artificial sweeteners, precisely because they are sweet, encourage sugar craving and sugar dependence.” Stick to water and sugar-free tea instead.
10. Your partner doesn’t share your weight loss goal
It may sound surprising, but it’s true. If your partner isn’t following the same healthy living plan, it can become significantly harder for you to stick to it. If your partner eats unhealthy foods around you, wants to get takeout often, and prefers sleeping or relaxing to hitting the gym, you’ll find yourself going along with their choices. Getting support from your partner can go a long way in achieving your weight loss goals. Try going on a diet or working out together. If not, just communicate and let you partner know that you need their support to make your weight loss plan work for you.
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