Losing excess weight for betterment of health, to keep body fit and healthy has gained importance nowadays. In the beginning, the task may seem impossible but by adopting the right techniques and methods under the guidance of professionals, it will become easy and possible.
Sometimes the person may be keeping a check on the calorie intake, exercising regularly and doing all possible things known to support weight loss, yet the scale won’t budge. This problem can be extremely frustrating.
Why achieving weight loss goal is so difficult?
1. Not Eating Enough Protein
Protein is an important nutrient for losing weight.
25-30% of calories per day coming from protein boost metabolism by 80–100 calories per day and helps in reducing cravings and desire for snacking.
Studies have shown that those having high protein breakfast are less hungry and have fewer cravings throughout the day. Average protein requirement of a normal person is 0.8 – 1 gm / kg body weight.
High protein intake helps in preventing metabolic slowdown and eventually prevents weight regain.
2. Not Lifting Weights
It is important to do some form of resistance training such as lifting weights in the journey of losing weight.
Many of them focus on diet control during the weight loss and avoid doing exercises or opt for yoga and walking.
During diet control there is loss of muscle mass along with body fat, but alongwith diet if some weight lifting exercises are performed it will benefit in increasing muscle mass, insulin sensitivity, strengthening muscles and joints.
Strength training is an effective way to lose fat. It prevents the loss of muscle mass often associated with weight loss and helps maintaining long-term fat loss.
Weight lifting and muscle strengthening exercises can be done at home using resistant band and the training can also be done properly in gym under the guidance of an expert.
Many think that skipping meals or eating less quantity of food would help in shedding off those extra calories.
But it is not a good idea to “starve” for too long as weight loss via starvation would cause individuals to lose significant amount of nutrition and they become deficient in vitamins and minerals.
Sometimes it becomes difficult to starve for longer time and then suddenly the person feels hungry and they may binge on highly processed foods which in turn adds on to their weight.
4. Drinking Sugary Beverages
Sugary drinks or sugar-sweetened beverages refers to any beverage with added sugar or other sweeteners (high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, fruit juice concentrates, and more).
This includes soda, pop, cola, tonic, fruit punch, lemonade (and other “ades”), sweetened powdered drinks, as well as sports and energy drinks.
Many people replace meals with fruit juices or soft drinks and assume it would help in reducing weight.
But they are unaware of the fact that all these packed beverages contain loads of sugar which adds to those extra calories.
The best thing would be to have fruits instead of juices which helps in obtaining fibre from them.
Avoiding all sugary beverages is an excellent weight loss strategy. They often make up a significant portion of a person’s calorie intake.
5. Less Sleep
Good sleep is one of the most important factors for physical and mental health as well as in maintaining weight.
Lack of quality sleep is a strong risk factor for obesity.
Poor sleep affects the sympathetic nervous system, resulting in increased levels of cortisol, a hormone related to stress.
Many sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, worsens with weight gain which unfortunately leads to a cycle of poor sleep in turn leading to weight gain.
6. Drinking Less Water
Drinking water can benefit weight loss.
It has been observed that people who drank half a litre of water 30 mins before meals lost more weight than those who did not drink.
Water helps in burning calories, increases energy levels and most importantly it suppresses appetite.
7. Reducing Alcohol
Beer, wine and sugary alcoholic beverages are very high in calories.
Alcohol itself has about 7 calories per gram . Moderate drinking seems fine while heavy drinking is linked to weight gain.
Person consuming alcohol gains weight around the belly region.
8. Not Eating Mindfully
Mindful eating is one of the world’s most powerful weight loss tools.
It includes techniques like eating slowly without any distractions, savouring and enjoying each bite, chewing it 32 times that sends signals of fullness.
Numerous studies have shown that mindful eating causes significant weight loss thereby reducing the frequency of binge eating.
It is difficult in these busy times to sit and eat mindfully but trying to have atleast one meal in a day in relaxed manner is going to help in losing weight.
So remember to eat mindfully to achieve the desired goal of weight loss.
9. Having Untreated Medical Conditions
Some medical conditions can cause unexplained weight gain.
Some people even after trying out all the options of losing weight like doing physical activity, going for gym, having controlled diet find it nearly impossible to shed off the extra weight. The reason behind this is some underlying health conditions which are not evaluated.
Some medical conditions like hypothyroidism, depression, PCOS, Sleep apnea and other health conditions contribute to weight gain.
It is always better to consult the treating doctor and get evaluated. Consulting a proper nutritionist will always help in weight loss.
10. Managing Stress
Stress has become an important factor in adding weight as people working under pressure develop unhealthy habits like having irregular meal timings, having more of junk food than nutritious food, consuming unlimited alcohol and so on.
Researchers say that rise in the stress hormone cortisol can lead to weight gain.
To control stress, people should try out stress managing techniques like meditation, reading inspiring books, listening to soothing music or watching motivational videos on youtube.
During the weight loss journey its important to have a good support system which includes family and friends.
Get weight loss support from friends and family who understand you and motivate you to lose weight.
Try to surround yourself with people who support what you're doing and avoid those who don't.
A workout buddy is also an excellent idea for support.
Weight loss is not always easy and numerous factors play an important role.
Remaining focussed on your goal, trying out all the mentioned strategies such as mindful eating, keeping a food diary, eating more protein and doing strength exercises can help in achieving the desired results.
Changing a lifestyle which requires patience, dedication, perseverance, and resilience one can surely move forward and achieve the desired weight.
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