Let’s be honest, dieting is just hard work – right? Even if you’re watching what you eat, cutting the calories and exercising 7 days a week those extra pounds still find a way to cling to your body. I’m sure you know people that can eat whatever they want and never seem to put on an ounce of weight, which only leaves you scratching your head as to how they keep the weight off.
But don’t get to hard on yourself, genetics clearly is a factor in how easily someone loses weight, along with lifestyle habits as well as certain medical conditions can all play a role in your weight loss efforts. Gender can also hinder weight loss. For example, when men lose weight they tend to lose it first around the abdominal area, whereas women find it hard to lose abdominal fat.
Hard Time Losing Weight Any Ideas?
If you are having a hard time losing weight try talking to your healthcare provider or dietitian who can help you to lose those extra pounds by tailoring an exercise and meal plan best suited for you. If all else fails take a closer look at some of reasons why you can’t lose weight.
1. Your Diet
I’m sure you have already taken a close look at what you eat. Dieting is not just about starving yourself, make sure you are getting all of the right nutrients your body needs. Starving yourself or even eating a poor diet can lead to cravings as well as a sluggish metabolism. Also consider that you may have food intolerance’s which can lead to water weight gain and bloating. Food intolerance’s are very common and actually affect as many as 1 in 10 people. Some of the most common food intolerance’s are to soy, dairy, eggs, gluten, nuts and corn. Common food intolerance symptoms include constipation, bloating, gas (farting), and even diarrhea.
2. Your Genetics
Everyone’s body weight is different and your genes play a role in just how much weight your body carries. Hundreds of genes play a direct role in weight control and many of these genes are pre-programmed to ensure survival when food is scarce. Confused? Take a look at your grandparents or even your parents, if your family members are overweight the chances are that excess weight may be in your genes.
3. Medical Conditions
If it’s not your genes making you overweight maybe you have a medical condition that is increasing your weight. For example, many people who have hypothyroidism are overweight and also experience cold intolerance (with low body temperature), fatigue, achiness and poor mental function.
Insulin resistance is also a factor associated with being overweight. This medical condition is also associated with polycystic ovary syndrome which is a women’s health condition that effects the ovaries making them produce an excess of male hormones.
Fungal, which is also known as yeast or candida can cause sugar cravings along with weight gain.
4. Your Lifestyle
I’m sure you already know that how you live your life can directly affect your weight. When it comes to sleep try and aim for 7 to 9 hours of good sleep per night. Sleep is your body’s time to rest and sleep triggers growth hormone production which in-turn stimulates fat-burning muscle. A good night’s sleep also helps to improve insulin sensitivity which helps to decrease the body’s ability to make fat along with regulating appetite-controlling hormones ghrelin and leptin.
Another lifestyle factor that can lead to weight gain is stress. Stress is known as “the silent killer”, the stress hormone cortisol can make the body store excess calories, particularly in the form of belly fat. One of the best ways to beat stress is to regularly exercise combined with stress management techniques such as deep breathing and yoga.
5. Amount of Muscle Mass
Muscle mass is directly proportional to metabolism and in-turn the amount of calories burned. For example, people who have a large muscle mass tend to burn more calories making them lose weight quickly when compared to someone who has a low muscle mass. So in layman’s terms if you want to lose weight try incorporating some sort of strength training into your workout routine in order to build muscle mass and increase your body’s overall metabolism.
Take Away Recommendations
If you are worried about your weight go and talk to your doctor as they may be able to tell you if some of the medications you are taking are causing your weight gain. If you think you may have food intolerance’s try eliminating certain food types from your diet so that you can rule out any foods that maybe causing you problems.
Set up an appointment with an internist who will run a thyroid-stimulating hormone screening to see if you suffer from hypothyroidism. And finally, if you ask your doctor to check your levels of sex hormones to see if there is an imbalance of testosterone, estrogen and progesterone.
Photo by Alan Cleaver