Why am i not losing weight?
One of the worst feelings when trying to lose weight is not seeing success and becoming demoralized.
All the doubts set in and you begin to feel like you are completely incapable of losing weight.
You start asking yourself all sorts of questions:-
Do I suffer from a weight related illness❓
But I’ve not had dessert once this week – why haven’t I lost anything❓
But I ran 10 miles, why is my belly still huge❓
Am I too old to lose weight❓
Am I too lazy to lose weight❓
Is my body even capable of losing weight❓
This is completely natural when we do not see results.
Believe me, I have been there and the doubts begin to wear you down!
Ultimately you give up and convince yourself that you are destined to be overweight forever.
The good news is that most of the time, the reason you aren’t dropping the pounds can be identified and fixed quite easily.
Once you’ve done that and have a clear, well defined path – you are 9 times out of 10 likely to start seeing some results.
Losing weight is multi-faceted.
Usually there isn’t one simple magic bullet that will deliver results.
There’s usually a combination of things that you can do and when you put them together, losing weight becomes much less of a chore.
With that in mind, I have put together 11 of the main reasons why you probably aren’t seeing weight loss results so that you can start making changes today!
Whether that’s changes to your diet, exercise regime, lifestyle or overall health – there are usually steps that you can begin today that will make a huge difference.
Let’s take a look!
1. You aren’t drinking enough water
One of the main reasons that people eat more calories than they need to is because they snack when they should be drinking water.
The brain sometimes gets confused with what’s going on in the stomach and tells you to eat when it really means drink.
This means that you end up eating to excess when all you really needed to do to satisfy that urge was to have a glass of water.
So the next time you think you’re hungry, try and drink water instead and see what happens. In my experience, the hunger pangs often stop!
💡Studies have shown that people who drank water before a meal lost nearly 50% more weight than those who didn’t.
So drinking water also has a positive impact on the number of calories you burn!
2. You aren’t Eating enough protein
People who aren’t successful at losing weight tend to eat too little protein.
Protein is super important for weight loss.
Not only does speed up your metabolism and burn calories, it also keeps you fuller for longer so you are much less likely to head for the snack shelf between meals.
Protein also increases the production of hormones that suppress appetite.
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3. You’re eating too many carbs
Carbs are a dieter’s worst nightmare.
If you want your body to start burning fat for energy, then you need to stop giving it carbs to burn!
Instead, load up on protein and healthy fats whilst eaten only a minimal amount of carbs.
It’s really that simple!
4. Your portion sizes are too big
People in the western world eat too much.
Our portions are out of control which means we inevitably eat way more calories than is necessary to keep us going.
This is because we have grown accustomed to eating this way.
It’s a bad habit that can be broken!
Without adequate exercise, more calories = more weight gain = less weight loss. It’s not rocket science!
Many people think that if you cut down on your portion sizes you will just feel hungrier later and end up eating between meals.
💡However, Studies have shown that most people do not actually compensate later in the day!
So, evaluate whether your portion sizes are too big. You will probably find you can reduce them and still feel full!
5. You’re not Eating enough fiber
Fiber is a dieter’s best friend!
Especially the soluble type!
Because when we eat foods containing fiber we stay fuller for longer meaning we are much less likely to want to snack and eat excess calories above our daily requirements.
Fiber rich foods are also naturally low in calories so you automatically consume less by eating foods with it in.
6. You’re not getting enough sleep
Sleep is super important for weight loss!
If you hit the hay too late every night then your body starts to do weird things.
Lack of sleep can lead to over production of the hormone, ghrelin, which tells your brain that you are hungry.
Lack of sleep can also lead to your fat cells under producing the hormone leptin which is a natural hunger suppressant.
As a result, you will find yourself snacking much more.
So, whatever you do, ensure you get enough sleep!
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7. Your Metabolism has slowed down
As we age our metabolism slows down.
This means we are much more likely to put weight on and faster than when we were younger.
People often do not realize this and keep a mindset that’s incompatible with their older body!
As a result, people carry on eating the same number of calories even though their metabolism has slowed, which inevitably results in weight gain.
This is a particular problem for people who dieted when they were younger and were successful but are now unable to shift the pounds. What worked then, may not work now.
A key additional reason for a slowing metabolism is not retaining muscle mass. This is because muscle burns more calories than fat.
So be sure to lift some weight or do some exercise to keep your muscle mass around for longer!
8. You have a medical condition
If you’ve been doing all the right things and are just not seeing results (and perhaps you think something isn’t quite right) then it could be worth asking whether a medical condition is at play.
There are a number of conditions that can cause your body to either put on more weight or make it harder to shift it.
Some of these include:-
- Thyroid conditions
- Anti-depressants (such as SSRI’s)
- Diabetes and its medications
- Medications to treat high blood pressure
If you suspect any of these could be causing a problem then it’s probably worth booking a GP appointment to find out.
Stress is a huge problem for our bodies and unfortunately in this day and age we tend to expose our bodies to way too much of it.
Stress can cause havoc with your weight loss goals for a number of reasons.
It increases the stress hormone cortisol which increases your appetite.
Stress can also make us crave junk food to comfort us meaning we end up eating all the wrong things.
Stress can also lead to less motivation meaning we’re less likely to want to work out or prepare healthy meals.
Finally, stress can ruin our sleep pattern. As above, sleep is crucial for weight loss!
So do yourself a huge favor and try and relax. Yoga, exercise, reading and breathing exercises will all help curb your stress levels.
10. Unrealistic Goals
One of the key reasons people fail at weight loss is because they set goals that are just not of this world!
Dieters set unrealistic goals and then beat themselves up about it when they inevitably fail.
This can create a never ending cycle of negative thoughts that convince us that we are incapable of losing weight.
So, instead, set a target that you think you can achieve and when you achieve it, you will get a little bit of encouragement to move you onto the next goal, and to the next and so on and so on!
Set small goals and enjoy the little wins as you go!
I can guarantee you this will be much more productive in the long run!
11. You’re not eating enough
One of the big problems I notice with some dieters is that they think they can starve themselves into a slim figure!
The problem with eating too little is that ultimately we end up getting bored or unhappy and lose motivation.
We then slack off and go back to eating unhealthy, calorie rich foods!
Losing weight should be treated as a healthy lifestyle change not an exercise in starvation.
Instead of starving yourself, try eating the same amount of food but change the types of food, so you are eating nutritious, filling, low calorie foods instead.
Do this and you’ll avoid the horrible feeling of being hungry but you’ll be naturally eating less calories and will be much more likely to see success.
About the author
Catherine holds a bachelor of science degree and is a registered mental health nurse.
She is a self-confessed health and fitness freak, nutrition fanatic and mental health boffin.
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