15 Mistakes That Stop You From Losing Weight
Has your weight loss slowed down or stopped altogether despite your best efforts? You may be surprised at the reasons you aren’t losing as much weight as you expected to.
Here, we’ll look at 15 sneaky reasons you may not be losing weight and tips to help you take action and start seeing results again.
15 Surprising Reasons You Aren’t Losing Weight
1. You Aren’t Eating Enough Protein
Considered the most satiating macronutrient, protein is key for weight loss. Protein offers several benefits when it comes to losing weight, including:
- Promoting feelings of fullness and satisfaction
- Encouraging the body to produce fewer hunger hormones, such as ghrelin, and more fullness hormones (a high protein breakfast is especially important for positively impacting hunger hormones)
- Supporting a healthy metabolism
- Preserving muscle mass
- Reducing cravings and the desire to snack
To make sure you are eating enough protein, try including lean meats, eggs, dairy products, lentils, or high-quality protein shakes in your diet.
2. You’re Not Practicing Mindful Eating
Do you frequently eat while watching TV, reading the paper, or scrolling on your phone? If so, you may be consuming more food than you realize.
Mindful eating, the practice of eating without any distractions, involves eating slowly, enjoying your food, and savouring it, which may be a powerful weight-loss tool. By focusing on your food and eliminating distractions, you can tune in to your brain’s signals that you are satisfied.
Here are some tips for practicing mindful eating:
- Sit down at a table, not on a couch, in bed, in your car, etc.
- Chew slowly and thoroughly, paying attention to each bite
- Notice the smells, textures, flavors, and colors of your food
- Turn off the TV, set your phone in a different room, and put away any other distractions
- Pay close attention to when you start to feel full and stop eating once you do
3. You Aren’t Keeping a Food Journal
Tracking how much you eat, what you eat, where you eat, why you eat, and when you eat can bring awareness to your eating habits – both the good and the bad ones. For many of us, it can be easy to underestimate how much we are eating.
If you have reached a weight loss plateau, consider tracking your food intake for at least a week and watching for any patterns. You can also keep note of how many macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, and fats) you are consuming.
Although it isn’t necessary to track your calories or food intake forever, paying attention to your eating habits for a few weeks may provide important information as to why you aren’t losing weight.
4. You Are Eating Too Many Processed Foods
Along with keeping track of the quantity of food you eat, it is also important to pay attention to the quality. If your diet includes too many processed foods, it may be slowing your weight loss efforts.
Try to consume a balanced diet that is rich in nutrient-dense, whole foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains.
Be especially careful to avoid processed foods that are disguised as health foods. Often, foods that are labelled “gluten-free”, “sugar-free”, or “fat-free” are loaded with preservatives, sodium, and artificial sugar.
5. You Are Drinking Your Calories
Beverages are one of the sneakiest potential causes of weight gain, especially sugary drinks such as soda. The brain does not treat liquid calories the same as calories consumed from food, meaning you may compensate by consuming extra food later in the day.
Instead of soda, juices, sugary alcoholic beverages, beer, and wine, opt for sparkling water or water with freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice. If needed, start slowly by replacing one beverage a day with a glass of water instead.
Over half of Americans drink coffee every day, making it an important beverage to pay attention to. While there are proven health benefits of drinking coffee thanks to the nutrients and antioxidants it contains, it is important to choose your additives carefully.
If you add sugar, milk, or cream to your coffee or tea, try slowly reducing the amount you add each time until you can drink your tea or coffee plain.
6. You Aren’t Strength Training
While most of us automatically think of cardio for losing weight, strength training is a crucial component of the weight loss process. Along with being an efficient way to burn fat, resistance training can help prevent the loss of muscle as you lose weight.
If your exercise routine is only focused on cardio, try adding some strength training regularly. You can add the following resistance exercises to your routine without any equipment and from the comfort of your home :
- Wall sits
7. You Need More Sleep
Did you know over a third of adults in the United States do not get enough sleep? Along with leading to fatigue and brain fog, too little sleep can also hinder weight loss efforts.
If you do not get enough sleep, it can reduce your motivation to exercise, cause negative hormonal changes, and promote belly fat.
If you have difficulty getting a good night of sleep, work on developing a healthy sleeping routine.
8. You Are Eating Too Often
Have you ever heard of the advice to eat “5 small meals a day” to keep your metabolism high and lose weight? As popular as this belief is, it may not be the best weight loss strategy.
Rather, intermittent fasting offers proven health benefits, including weight loss support. This strategy involves limiting your eating to certain intervals, such as between 9 am and 5 pm every day.
9. You Are Using Large Plates and Bowls for Eating
Serving your meals on large plates may be causing you to eat more food than you realize, and studies prove it. Individuals who used larger bowls and plates to eat ended up consuming 16% extra calories at each meal.
Try using smaller bowls and plates for your meals and snacks and see if it helps you feel fuller from less food.
10. You Aren’t Drinking Enough Water
One of the health benefits of drinking enough water is the potential to lose more weight. Thirst can be mistaken for hunger or cravings, making it important to stay adequately hydrated.
Drinking a large glass of water before a meal can be an especially helpful weight loss strategy. One study discovered that individuals who drank two cups of water before eating breakfast consumed over 20% fewer calories than individuals who skipped the water.
11. You Are Shopping Without a Grocery List
Shopping without a grocery list – especially if you are hungry! – can lead to impulse purchases and unhealthy choices. Instead, using a health grocery list can help you make better choices (and save money).
Check out our Guide to Creating a Healthy Grocery List to help get you started.
12. You Aren’t Keeping Healthy Snacks on Hand
Keeping healthy snacks readily available can help you opt for a healthier choice rather than a processed snack when you are hungry.
Try keeping the following snacks in your home or office to make sure you always have a convenient, healthy option available:
- Fresh cut veggies
- An easily portable fruit such as an apple, banana, or orange
- A high-quality protein shake
- Homemade trail mix (mixed nuts, seeds, raisins, and 70% or high dark chocolate)
- Roasted seaweed or chickpeas
- Cottage cheese
- Celery or apple slices with nut butter
- Homemade granola
- Healthy treats such as fiber snacks
13. You Are Eating Too Many Healthy Fats
Just because something is healthy doesn’t mean you should overdo it. Healthy fats such as coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado oil are an ideal example of the phrase “too much of a good thing”.
Along with their high level of healthy fats, these foods are also calorie-dense. For instance, there are over one hundred calories in just one tablespoon of olive oil. Adding one or two spoons to your meals can quickly increase your calorie intake.
While olive oil, coconut oil, and avocado oil can certainly be a part of a healthy, balanced diet, be aware of how often and how much you use them.
14. You Aren’t Eating Enough Fiber
Since fiber can help you feel fuller longer and keep your appetite in check, eating too little fiber may slow down your weight loss efforts.
Along with helping to support weight loss, there are many other health benefits to eating fiber. To increase your fiber intake, try consuming more fruits, veggies, legumes, and whole grains.
15. You Aren’t Eating Enough Fruits and Vegetables
Are you one of the 9 out of 10 Americans who are not meeting the recommended intake for fruits and vegetables? If so, the lack of fruits and veggies in your diet may be slowing your weight loss efforts.
Fruits and vegetables are packed with beneficial nutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, fibre, and minerals, all while being low in fat and calories.
Here are a few tips for eating more fruits and vegetables:
- Add some fruit or berries to your oatmeal
- Keep fresh veggies (carrots, celery, bell peppers, cauliflower, broccoli) cut up in the fridge so you can easily grab them as a healthy snack
- Make a smoothie filled with your favorite berries, avocado, spinach, and some unsweetened, unflavored yogurt
- Serve at least one vegetable as a side to each meal
- Add chopped vegetables to lasagna, stew, and casseroles
- Make a fruit sorbet
- Make an omelet and throw in all your favorite veggies (mushrooms, onions, spinach, bell peppers, asparagus, etc.)
- Make your veggies soup packed with asparagus, carrots, bell peppers, broccoli, etc.
- Keep frozen veggies and berries on hand
Want More Tips on Losing Weight?
We hope you find our list of reasons you may not be losing weight helpful. By adjusting your daily habits and following some of these tips, we hope you can start progressing toward your weight loss and wellness goals.
If you are looking to jumpstart your weight loss efforts or get back on track, Isagenix offers a variety of healthy, convenient supplements, meal replacement shakes, and snacks to help you lose weight without the guesswork and frustration.
If you need help selecting the best products for your weight loss goals, please feel free to reach out to us for personalized product recommendations.