Have you been dieting for weeks or even months and the scale won’t budge? Are you spending countless hours in the gym and not getting the results you expected? Many people think they are doing right by strict dieting and exhaustive amounts of exercise only to find that their weight loss is insignificant. Check out my list of five reasons you may not be losing weight. If you are doing one or more of these, then change your habits and start the scale moving in the right direction.
- Skipping breakfast – Everyone knows this meal should never be skipped, but many people go half their day without eating a single bite. Your metabolism slows while you sleep and won’t significantly increase until you eat something. Break the fast by eating a balanced breakfast within 30 minutes of waking. Also, eating breakfast will help you ward off hunger later in the day. Think of it as an ‘insurance policy’ against snacking.
- Not consuming enough fiber – If your diet is low in fiber, chances are it is high in calories. Many of the foods lowest in fiber, like processed foods, are highest in calories. You can save hundreds of calories each day by choosing higher fiber fruits, vegetables, and whole grains without resorting to fiber supplements that often cause bloating and other gastrointestinal issues. Having adequate fiber with each meal and snack keeps you feeling fuller longer, which can lead to less eating by the end of the day.
- Not eating enough – We all know that eating too many calories can keep you from losing weight, but did you know that eating too little will thwart your weight-loss efforts, too? While everyone’s calorie requirements are different, you have a minimum amount you need each day just to be you. If you consistently eat below this minimum amount, called the basal metabolic rate, you may send your body into a starvation state and actually slow down your metabolism. Feel free to contact me for help determining how many calories you need each day. It’s confusing; but I can help.
- Only dieting and no exercise – While you may be able to lose weight by dieting alone, chances are you will regain your lost weight quickly once you go on vacation or get off your diet. Dieting without exercise can lead to muscle loss. By adding exercise to your weight loss plans, there’s a greater chance the weight you lose will be fat and you will preserve your muscle mass. This will help you prevent the ‘yo-yo’ effect you may have experienced before.
- Not keeping food records – If you bite it, you write it! This simple weight-loss tool is one of the most effective ways of losing weight. Not only does writing down what you eat keep you honest, but it will also help you identify times of the day you may be stress eating, eating when you are in the car, or simply eating when you aren’t even hungry. I don’t recommend using a complicated calorie tracker, but I do recommend finding an easy to use method of recording what goes in your mouth. This can be done with many various online apps, a spreadsheet, or even an old-fashioned approach: pad and pencil.
I hope these five simple reasons you’re not losing weight will help you achieve greater results. Weight loss is a journey, not a sprint. No one method works for everyone, but simple lifestyle changes will help you achieve the weight you are looking for and ultimately become a healthier YOU!