Losing weight is different for everyone - whilst some people may find shedding a few pounds easy, it can be a challenge for others. When we don’t see results quickly, it can be hard to stay motivated but the important thing to remember is that losing weight in a healthy, controlled way takes time and commitment.
If you have been trying to lose weight and not noticed any changes, there may be a few explanations as to why. This article will highlight some of the most common reasons why you’re not losing weight and share some tips to get you on track on your road to weight loss.
There are a whole host of reasons why you might not be losing weight, including:
Consuming alcohol may be making it more difficult for you to lose weight. People often forget that alcohol can contain lots of calories, in fact, the NHS states that alcohol can contain 7 calories per gram!
It’s not just about the calories either. Alcohol can also contribute to weight gain in other ways, such as;
Drinking less alcohol or cutting it out completely will not only help you to slim down, but also reduce your risk of developing health issues such as artery disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
Not sure where to begin? Read our blog on how to start drinking less alcohol for some top tips!
If you’re struggling with weight loss, it can be a good idea to speak to your GP and address any medical conditions you might have. The NHS lists several medical conditions that may lead to weight gain, including:
See the full NHS list of medical reasons for putting on weight here.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, mindful eating can help with weight loss. When you’re having a meal, you should practice eating smaller amounts, chewing each mouthful until the food is grinded down and taking your time. This method of food consumption allows you to really savour your meals and notice what you’re giving your body. Mindfulness is best described as what it isn’t - mindlessness; think clearly about what you're eating and when. Here are some ways you can eat mindfully:
As we’ve mentioned, sleep deprivation can lead to weight gain as changes to hormones regulating your appetite can increase the likelihood of you eating more than you need to.
In a study by Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland, USA, which looked at how sleep affects weight loss, it was found that people sleeping between six and eight hours a night had a better chance of reaching their end weight-loss goal than those sleeping either more or less than this. Therefore, it can be argued that getting the right amount of sleep alongside eating healthy and exercising can aid weight loss.
Protein is really important for losing weight as it helps to boost your metabolism and reduce your food cravings. Protein will also prevent you from losing muscle and help them to repair following exercise. Incorporating more protein in your breakfast is also beneficial - eggs, low-fat greek yogurt and protein pancakes are popular choices for mornings as they give you plenty of energy for the day.
If you find yourself skipping breakfast, or any other meals for that matter, this is another potential reason as to why you’re not losing weight. According to the NHS, when you skip meals, you feel more tired, deprive yourself of essential nutrients and will be more likely to snack throughout the day.
It’s possible that you’re not seeing the results you’re hoping for as you’re not tracking what you’re eating and drinking. It’s easy to nibble on snacks here and there without really paying attention to what we’re doing - especially when we are focused on something such as work or the TV.
You can combat this by keeping a diary and tracking your food and drink intake as well as what exercise you have had. This will keep you on track and if you still don’t notice any weight loss, you can pay attention to other factors, such as your sleeping pattern or consult your GP.
You may well be eating less to lose weight - but are you eating the right foods? If you are eating unhealthy or processed foods which are high in sugar, salt and fat, you are less likely to shed the pounds. Try to avoid the following amongst other unhealthy snacks:
Processed food may well be easier to cook or grab on a lunch break but they can seriously harm your weight loss efforts and make you overeat according to Harvard Health Publishing.
Losing weight is much easier when you combine healthy eating with exercise. Cardiovascular exercise (cardio) is particularly effective for losing weight as it increases your heart rate. Types of cardio include:
Learn more about the best exercises to lose weight here.
According to the NHS, drinking more water may help you on your mission to lose weight. This is because water doesn’t contain calories like other beverages such as squash and may help you to manage your cravings. Regardless of weight loss benefits, you should drink plenty of water (6-8 glasses a day is recommended) to keep yourself hydrated, especially if you are exercising. Not drinking enough water can lead to fatigue, headaches and dry skin.
You may be tempted by fizzy drinks but it is important for you to remind yourself that these will only provide you with short bursts of energy and they may contain alarmingly high amounts of sugar. According to Diabetes.co.uk, half a litre of a sweetened drink is around 60% of the recommended maximum daily sugar intake.
If you aren’t noticing weight loss, try cutting out sugary drinks such as cola and squash and note any changes.
If you live in Dorset and you’re looking to improve your physical fitness and wellbeing by losing weight, we are here to help! Register or contact us today to find out how our friendly team of coaches and advisors can support you.