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Why am I not losing weight? Our experts discuss 8 common issues

why am I not losing weight - a white woman in sports gear sits on a bed and contemplates
Fitness Editor
Julia is a qualified fitness trainer. She writes our articles about nutrition and fitness. She also makes free workout plans for our site.

Encountering some difficulties on your way to your feel-good weight? We asked our nutrition experts to answer the question most of us have asked ourselves at some point: Why am I not losing weight?

Anyone who’s experimented with diets knows that weight loss isn’t always easy. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible! We asked our nutritionists about the problems they encounter most frequently when making nutrition plans to lose weight. It turned out that most challenges were about organizing healthy eating into everyday life. You know us, though: we know that behind every problem is a solution. Let us help you motivate yourself to overcome that obstacle and meet your fitness goals.

1. No time to cook

Eating fresh and healthy as a way to lose weight isn’t always easy. Cooking less frequently but more at once is a simple way to save yourself time and effort. Just cook enough for several days every time. Don’t want to eat the same thing multiple times in a row? Freeze individual servings to defrost later.

When eating out is part of your schedule, it’s all about focusing on your options. You can find low-calorie alternatives to pasta, dumplings, and fatty meats almost everywhere. Go for salads or fresh vegetable dishes, with legumes or other high-protein sides.

2. Skipping breakfast

Love it or hate it, breakfast helps create a good foundation, reducing the chances of cravings and eating too much at lunch, especially if you want to lose weight.

Hate eating right after you get up? Take your breakfast to go! It doesn’t have to be a calorie-bomb muffin from the coffee shop: our Protein Porridge To Go comes in super convenient packaging and is ready in three minutes. If you have more time, make sure you’re following the Golden Rules for a healthy breakfast.

3. Not eating enough protein

If you’re firmly on Team Carbs, it might seem impossible to hit the amount of protein nutritionists recommend to build lean muscle. But we’ve got a few tricks for an easy protein boost: Swap a delicious chia seed recipe for cereal; cook pasta made from protein-rich legumes instead of wheat; or – very simply – 1-2 protein shakes a day.

4. Can’t find healthy options on the go

This happens to the best of us, too. But you can be prepared for it as part of your weight loss efforts. Toss our Nuts and Berries in your bag for some healthy fats and protein with high-quality dried fruits to satisfy your sweet tooth. Sip a high-protein drink like CocoWhey if you’re not drinking enough water.

Looking for some crunchy food choices to add variety to your diet? Try some raw vegetables dipped in Organic Peanut Butter for a protein boost without many calories. Consider beforehand what you’re likely to crave throughout the day, and what’s most convenient to take with you. Then take a minute to pack it the night before.

Why am I not losing weight? Start with healthier snacks. Here, a white woman's hands prepare strawberry slices on the top of a yogurt jar to go
©iStock/Tassii_FE

5. Craving sweets that aren’t just dried fruit

Yes, your body will get used to eating fewer sweets as your eating habits change and you cut back your intake. But sometimes chocolate is the only thing that’ll do. Thankfully, there’s some healthier chocolate options on the market today! Raw chocolate often has less sugar, fewer calories, and more nutrients than classic milk chocolate.

Combine your protein and chocolate needs with homemade chocolate chip cookie dough! No time for that? Just stir some chocolate Whey Protein into your yogurt and add a handful of fruit.

A spoon scoops into a bowl of chocolate chip cookie dough next to a canister of chocolate peanut butter Whey Protein and another of Instant Oats by foodspring.

6. Reaching a Weight Loss Plateau

Our nutrition experts often hear that diet plans start out super successful. But then, after three weeks, weight loss progress stagnates, and nothing seems to help anymore. Unfortunately, this is part of the sneaky yo-yo effect.

“Especially at the beginning of a diet, the number of calories people eat per day is often too low. In this way, the body is fooled into thinking it is starving. As a result, it begins to store all the calories it gets in desperation and it won’t burn fat.” (Marco, foodspring nutrition expert)

That’s why it’s important to clearly define your weight loss goals before you start any fitness plan and adjust your daily calorie intake accordingly. Only after you’ve set your destination, can you figure out the right way to get there. These paths are different for every individual and can require more than just a calorie deficit alone.

7. Working with your genes and losing weight

It’s true that your genetics can make it harder to lose weight: every body is different. Not everyone is able to bulk up with muscles. And in the same way, some bodies are not made to be a size extra-small. Nevertheless, we all have the potential to change for the better. The first thing to do, like with so many things in life, is set a weight loss goal. The first step of setting an appropriate goal is loving yourself and your body for its strengths, its abilities, and its potential – yours, not a social media influencer’s.

Long-term success comes from listening to your body and working with it, instead of against it. Increase your awareness of what your body needs by trying out new things, creating and following a schedule, and examining your habits.

Not every goal or every plan will fit to every body and every life. The challenge is to find the best way for you, that can make you feel better, in terms of diet and exercise. Our nutrition and training experts are here to help! We’ll give you the tools to turn your motivation into results you can believe in.

8. Not enough time to work out

Last, but not least, the problem with losing weight that our experts hear the most by far: I don’t have time for an exercise routine. But as long as you’re motivated, you can squeeze exercise into your schedule.

Watching half an hour of television in the evening? That’s the perfect time to go for a jog instead. You could even combine exercise and entertainment – listen to an audiobook on your run, or use an exercise machine while you watch if you have access to one. Too tired in the evening? No sweat (literally)! Go to bed to avoid sleep deprivation – you should aim for at least 7 hours of sleep – then get up early to go for a run or ride your bike to school or work.

Are you on board with the idea – but jogging isn’t your thing? Work is too far away? Gyms, swimming pools, and parks aren’t around the corner either? Can’t find a regular workout partner? Sure, it’s not ideal, but we’ve still got you covered.

Our in-house fitness experts have developed dozens of free workouts that are easy to do on your own, anytime, anywhere. Follow our simple instructions and you can make tangible progress with just 20 minutes of exercise every day or two.

It doesn’t always have to be strength training or monotonous cardio: Team sports, dance, and yoga are also perfect types of exercise for burning calories. The key is to find the type of activity* that works for you – be it body weight resistance training or long walks!

That inner couch potato still needs some convincing? Check out our article on motivating yourself to exercise for more tips!

*Note: If you have a serious musculoskeletal disorder, a cardiovascular disease, a very high weight, or other health conditions, consult a doctor before you start any fitness plan.

Article sources
We at foodspring use only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial policy to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

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