Common reasons why you're not losing weight

BY PENDA HONEYGHAN

Monday, July 30, 2018

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WEIGHT loss is not always easy for everyone and it can be particularly frustrating when you are dieting or exercising, and especially when you are doing both. Two experts, nutritionist and wellness coach Donovan Grant, and personal and fitness instructor Gisel Harrow, said that the challenge is not always linked to your diet or exercise routine. Below, they share some of the most common reasons why you fail to lose weight:

Your diet is high in sodium

Grant said that when your diet is high in sodium this can result in your body retaining increased volumes of water. This water retained will be reflected in your body weight.

 

You binge eat

Many people on diets often fall prey to binge eating, a term which Grant said is used to describe a period of time in which a person eats uncontrollably and this is usually after a period of being starved. The quantity is not only excessive, but you eat just about anything in sight, which in many cases are foods that are high in calories, and as such you will not lose weight.

 

You are stressed

Being stressed doesn't only have psychological and emotional but physical repercussions as well, such as weight gain or simply not being able to lose any, Grant advised. When you are stressed it is not only likely that you will find yourself craving foods that are high in sugars which can contribute to weight gain but, in addition, stress, similar to sleep deprivation, also triggers an increase in the production of hunger hormones.

You are building muscle

“People may fail to lose weight if they are building muscle. Muscles are compact and as such they weigh more than fat,” Grant said. He explained that while you may be shedding the fat, your scale might not reflect this because you are building your muscles at the same time.

 

You think you can eat whatever you want

Harrow said that the belief that because you are exercising you can pretty much eat anything is misleading. “You can't simply put anything in your bodies thinking you will work it off. This mentality is a no-no if you are serious about your fitness journey. To lose weight and to maintain it means that you will also need to aim for a healthier, balanced diet,” Harrow instructed. Anything, outside of this, especially when done frequently, is counterproductive and the only thing you should anticipate is disappointment.

You do not get enough sleep

“Believe it or not, lacking sleep can contribute to weight gain, especially in the tummy area. This is for a number of reasons, including the fact that losing sleep may make you feel hungry even when you aren't,” Harrow said. She notes that sleep deprivation may also affect the secretion of cortisol, which is one of the hormones that regulate appetite, generally causing it to produce excessive amounts and triggering hunger. Being tired also reduces the likelihood that you will have the energy to exercise.

 

You've hit a plateau

When you continually do the same workout, your body becomes used to it and you will realise that you reach a flat point where all you do is maintain or lose a little weight in comparison to the pounds you used to lose. Harrow said that you might also experience this if you don't consume enough calories. This translates to not having enough energy to sustain your level of activity, which may reduce the likelihood of weight loss. In addition, exercising too much can result in the same thing. The body, she explains, has a way of fighting back, and may decrease the number of calories you burn during the rest of your day.

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