4 surprising reasons your weight loss routine is not working
Are you doing everything you are meant to do in your weight loss journey but the calorie count keeps rising? Do you follow through with dieting and exercise but your weight increases more? Is fat starting to appear in unexpected places? There are some weight loss routines you must have skipped or left out.
Firstly, what are calories?
A calorie is a unit of energy. Scientists have defined “calorie” to mean a unit of energy or heat that could come from a variety of sources, such as coal or gas. In a nutritional sense, all types of food — whether they are fats, proteins, carbohydrates or sugars — are important sources of calories, which people need to live and function. Health professionals state that a middle-age moderately active female should consume 2,000 calories per day.
A middle-age moderately active male should consume 2,400 to 2,600 calories per day. Foods that are considered high-calorie, or calorically dense, have a high amount of calories relative to their serving size. While high-calorie foods are often associated with junk food, some are high in nutrients, as well. It’s time to delve a little deeper into what else might be going on.
- Lack of sleep
A study presented at the North American Association for the Study of Obesity found that those who got less than four hours of sleep a night were 73 percent more likely to be obese than those who got the recommended seven to nine hours of rest.
- Excess stress
Cortisol is a hormone naturally produced by your body. Created by the adrenal glands located on your kidneys, cortisol is released when you’re under stress. Cortisol stimulates your fat and carbohydrate metabolism, creating a surge of energy in your body. While this process is essential for survival situations, it also increases your appetite. Additionally, elevated cortisol levels can cause cravings for sweet, fatty and salty foods.
- Prescriptions can trigger weight gain
Several other prescription drugs are linked to weight gain. The list includes antipsychotic drugs (used to treat disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder), along with medications to treat migraines, seizures, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Anti-inflammatory steroids like prednisone are notorious for causing weight gain. An unfortunate side effect of some antidepressants is weight gain. Talk to your doctor about making changes to your treatment plan if you think your antidepressant is causing weight gain.
If your thyroid (the butterfly-shaped gland in the front of your neck) is not making enough thyroid hormone, you’re probably feeling tired, weak, and cold, and gaining weight. Without enough thyroid hormone, your metabolism slows, making weight gain more likely.
- Excess Junk food
According to a 2014 study, about 19.9% of people in North America and Europe satisfy the criteria for food addiction. There are some medical conditions that can drive weight gain and make it much harder to lose weight. These include hypothyroidism, polycystic ovarian syndrome and sleep apnea.
- Excess alcohol consumption
Are you following your diet but still have cut short your drinking routines? Foods high in simple sugars, such as those found in candy, soda, and even beer, are also high in calories. Extra calories end up stored as fat in the body
If you’re cutting calories, you may experience a rapid drop in weight initially, as your body burns stored glycogen for energy. You might even lose a little muscle along with fat. To foster your weight loss again, you may need to cut more calories or amp up your physical activity.