- Are you struggling with your weight?
- Our body needs protein to build muscle
- Skipping a meal to lose weight never works
Are you struggling with your weight? Losing weight can be a daunting and challenging task. Also, it requires patience, perseverance and of course the right method. It can be frustrating and disappointing at times when you are unable to lose weight even after working so hard. You might be working out regularly, counting your calories, controlling your carb cravings and other lifestyle changes to shed those extra kilos. But it is possible that you might not see the results you were expecting. If these efforts are not helping you to lose weight, then what is the reason? Are you doing something wrong?
According to the Delhi based nutritionist and author Pooja Malhotra, "Hormonal imbalance can often slow down our weight loss efforts. You may be doing all the right things and still not losing weight. Conditions like thyroid and PCOD may seem to negate all your efforts. But you need not lose heart and there is no reason to believe that you can never lose weight. You need to persevere with consistent efforts and allow your hormones time to get back into sync."
The nutritionist further added, "Insulin resistance, very closely linked to PCOD and pre-diabetes also prevents weight loss. The only way to improve insulin sensitivity is by exercising and clean eating. Also, it doesn’t happen overnight, so patience is the key. Don’t fall into the trap of fad diets, weight loss supplements and fat burners."
"Sometimes, you may be losing weight steadily and then hit a plateau. That happens because your body gets adjusted to the new regime and diet, in that case, you must increase your calorie expenditure by exercising a little more. Another reason for hitting a plateau could be losing weight with a starvation diet. Such diets lead to temporary initial weight loss by burning of your muscle. Since muscle is the metabolically active tissue, loss of muscle mass leads to lowering down of metabolic rate, hence weight stagnation," she added
Have a look at 7 unexpected reasons you are not losing weight:
1. Not drinking enough water:
About 75% of your body weight is comprised of water. Water helps you keep hydrated, helps in various biological reactions and functions, aids in digestion and absorption, and removal of harmful toxins from the body. When you do not drink enough water, all these functions are performed smoothly. This further helps in metabolism and eventually proper digestion is possible. If you want to lose weight, your metabolism, digestion, excretion and cell function should be at optimum levels. It becomes difficult if you are consuming inadequate water. So, make sure you drink enough water throughout the day. Drink even more if you are working out. Also, you can try other healthy fluids like try lime water, coconut water and jeera water.
2. Adequate protein:
According to the Delhi based nutritionist and author Pooja Malhotra, "Our body needs protein to build muscle. We also need protein to compensate for the daily wear and tear of tissue that takes place. When people undertake a weight loss program, a high protein diet is needed to ensure that they don't burn out their muscle tissue. Therefore; high protein foods that must be included in your diet are lean protein like pulses, eggs, meat, dairy products, poultry and fatty fish. However, red meat must be avoided."
3. Wrong cooking method:
During your weight loss program, you make sure that you include healthy foods in your diet. Despite the fact that you are consuming healthy foods, eating in the right proportion, but are unable to lose weight then maybe your cooking method is wrong. Deep frying or cooking for too long can diminish the nutritional value of the foods and can prove to be harmful to your body. So, try using healthier cooking options like boiled, steamed, roasted, grilled, bake, blanched or eat raw.
4. Healthy fats:
If you are thinking that eliminating fats from your diet can help you lose weight, you are under a wrong impression. Fats are essential for your body and perform a lot of functions for your body like maintaining the cell structure. You need to consume healthy fats if you want to get rid of the fat. Healthy fats contain omega-3 fatty acids that help reduce inflammation, thereby preventing inflammation-induced weight gain. Therefore, make sure you consume almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios, olive oil, rice bran oil, flax seeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sunflower seed butter, nut butter and ghee. Ensure that you eat these foods moderately and in right quantities as excess of healthy fats can be harmful for your health.
5. Skipping meals:
The important thing to remember on a weight loss program is that starving will never help you shed those extra pounds. Skipping a meal to lose weight never works. When you skip a meal, your brain slows down which leads to in activeness. This, in turn, slows down your metabolism and digestion. Moreover, you will tend to eat more during the next meal. Also, avoid eating two or three heavy meals. Instead eat four or five small meals.
6. Inadequate sleep:
Yes, inadequate sleep can also be the reason that you are not losing weight. Make sure that you get enough sleep of about eight hours. Try going to bed and wake up at the same time. A fixed bedtime schedule will ensure a sound sleep.
A major factor that might prevent weight loss is stress. Be it any stress financial, work-related or personal, try keeping it away. Keep yourself calm all the time. You can practice some breathing exercise, meditation or even yoga to keep all the worries and stress at bay.
(Pooja Malhotra is a Delhi based nutritionist and an author)
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.