3 Reasons Why Your Weight Management Isn’t Working
We go through different phases in life, that’s just how it goes with our bodies and that’s totally OK. If you decide to lose a few pounds, there are many factors that come into play: sufficient exercise, a healthy diet, the right mindset and discipline are the foundations for successfully managing your weight.
But a healthy lifestyle doesn’t automatically mean you’ll lose weight (which can actually be a good thing). If you weigh more now than you did when you were in college or even a year ago, but you feel fundamentally comfortable in your skin and have the energy you need to cope with workouts and everyday life, you may not need to change as much as you think.
Even small changes can be enough. We’ve got a few tips and some food for thought to give your healthy lifestyle an upgrade in a few select spots. And if your favorite jeans end up fitting that bit better, then that’s surely a welcome bonus.
Related: If you’re hardwired into a diet mentality, find out what to do about it here.
#1 You’re Not Eating Enough (Protein)
Successful weight management involves the intake of key macro nutrients, i.e. carbohydrates, fats and, above all, protein. Numerous studies have shown that consuming more protein than the recommended daily allowance (at least 0.8 g per kilogram of body weight) can reduce body weight and improve body composition by reducing body fat. To prove this, participants consumed up to 1.6 g of protein per 1 kg of body weight daily, i.e. 112 g of protein per day for a person weighing 70 kg.
You should also avoid the yo yo dieting we’re all familiar with, so you not only lose weight, but also maintain your ideal weight. You can increase your intake up to 2.1g of protein depending on how full you feel, but beyond that, any further effects are negligible according to studies.
Make sure you consume enough energy in general and don’t follow fad diets or excessive calorie deficits just because you want to see immediate results. These approaches may work in the short term, but they’re not healthy or sustainable. Your body will quickly adapt to a reduced calorie intake, as will your metabolism. But it’s not irreversible, as is often claimed. Your metabolic rate will be lower however, and your body will be more sensitive to various hormones and neurotransmitters. Read more about crash diet consequences here.
To effectively achieve your goal, it’s important to know what your own body needs. No two bodies are the same and nutritional advice is difficult to generalize. What results in weight loss for one person may lead to plateauing and frustration for someone else. To best support you, our foodspring experts are here to offer their knowledge of exercise, nutrition and healthy lifestyles. Book a free consultation now.
#2 You’re Stressed
Meditation, yoga, no cell phones in the bedroom – you’re well aware of all the advice that’s supposed to help you de-stress and relax. But more often than not, there’s just not enough time for it all and that desperately needed me-time gets postponed. Just hang on in there this week and hold on for the next meet-up.
But this is precisely when you need to relax the most. If you’re stressed while trying to lose weight, but then realize you’re not losing as much weight as you hoped, more stress is inevitable. Science shows that in terms of weight management, this can be particularly counterproductive. In one study, participants in an intervention group took part in a relaxation program and managed to lose weight compared to a control group. It’s not just the busy daily grind that can stress your body however, overexercising can have the same effect.
There’s no need to unpack your incense sticks and meditate for 60 minutes in silence just yet however (although if you can, go for it). Find what works for you and create space for little breaks: we’ll give you just the inspiration you need.
#3 You’re Using the Figures on the Scales as a Guide
If you’re looking to lose weight, you probably want to reduce body fat, rather than muscle mass. With a healthy diet and regular strength training, you’ll get there, but this won’t necessarily be reflected by the scales. If your weight stays the same, or even increases slightly, it doesn’t mean that things aren’t working – quite the opposite. Contrary to the well-known fitness myth, muscles don’t weigh more than fat. After all, a kilo is still a kilo. But they are higher density, so a muscle cell weighs more when compared to a fat cell. Therefore, if you gain muscle mass and lose body fat, the number on the scale may stay the same or even increase slightly, but you’ll feel fitter and you’ll notice the difference in the mirror.
So don’t be swayed by your scales. It’s much better to find other indicators of whether you’re on your way to achieving your goal. How do your jeans fit? Can you lift more weights at the gym? Or are you waking up refreshed? If the answer is yes, then you’ll know you’re on the right track.
More interesting articles from foodspring:
- Motivation: the Key to Exercise Success
- Weight Training: Effects, Exercises and Top Tips for Beginners
- 5 Simple Tips to Stay on the Ball During Exercise
Sources for this article
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