Something I’ve become more aware of as I’ve been taking on more nutrition clients, is how many people are eating healthy & not losing weight. Either they’ve been dieting for a long time and can’t lose those last nagging 10 pounds, or they can’t seem to lose any weight at all. Since I see this problem all the time, I thought it would be helpful to share the common reasons for not losing weight so you know what to do when you’re eating healthy and not losing weight.
What To Do When You’re Eating Healthy & Not Losing Weight
Eating Too Much
“I’m eating healthy, but not losing weight.” Almost always this is due to over eating. Most people overlook the fact that you can gain weight eating a healthy diet. Healthy fats like avocados, nuts, seeds, nut butters, hummus, tahini, guacamole, etc. are healthy foods, but still need to be eaten in moderation. Portioning foods controls how much you eat in one sitting.
Tracking food is a good way to bring awareness to how much you’re eating and what foods are most calorie dense. It teaches you the appropriate portion sizes you can eat so you learn to better balance your food choices throughout the day.
Eating Too Often
If you’re not tracking or portioning your food, you might be over eating. Eating too frequently also keeps blood sugar raised. I’m a firm believer in keeping blood sugar stable, but many times I see people eating smaller, less filling meals and snacking their way through the day because they’re not satisfied from their meals. Instead of snacking, I’d rather see someone eat larger, more balanced meals with fewer snacks. It’s good for the body to get a little “detox” in between meals. If you’re balancing your meals properly, you won’t be hungry in between meals. This is something I teach in my virtual coaching program!
Not Drinking Enough Water
Water is such an important factor in losing weight and many times people think they’re drinking more than they really are. When I have my clients track their water intake, they’re always surprised by the results. If you’re eating healthy and not losing weight, check your water.
Tracking it with an app is one way to keep your water intake consistent. Also, setting out the number of bottles each morning you need to drink or filling a pitcher are good visual reminders throughout the day to drink the amount you need.
While exercise is a small portion of weight loss, it’s still part of the equation. Often people who lead a sedentary life believe simply being active doing normal household chores or walking around the park, believe this counts as exercise but does not. This is being active, and there’s a difference.
Adding cardiovascular activity will give your body a boost in the direction of fat loss. It’s also cardiovascular healthy, and something everyone should be doing for their overall health. Combining cardio with strength training builds lean muscle tissue. Lean muscle burns more calories than fat. By increasing lean muscle, you burn more calories which mean you’re more likely to lose weight.
Dieting Too Long
The most common problem I see with my nutrition clients who are eating healthy & not losing weight is that they’ve been dieting too long.
Eating a low calorie diet slows metabolism and has a ripple effect on hormone function. Essentially, the body is protecting itself from starvation. Eating a 1200 calorie diet is dangerous. Unfortunately, once hormone function is disrupted from low calorie dieting it becomes extremely difficult for a person to lose weight again. In fact, they will likely re-gain weight before losing weight.
Low calorie dieting is a tricky situation and one best handled working with a nutritionist. They can help you cycle your calories back to a safe place so you can eat more, and lose weight!
Stress impacts hormones, which as I stated earlier effects you’re ability to lose weight. In my FREE 5 Common Weight Loss Mistakes Training, I share how chronic stress increases cortisol which increases fat storage. If you’re eating healthy and not losing weight, then stress may be the culprit. Reducing emotional, physical and psychological stress, sleeping more and decreasing caffeine intake can go a long way in seeing movement in the scale.
Since weight loss is highly integrated with hormone function, certain medical conditions like PCOS, hypothyroidism, or any type of hormone imbalance can make weight loss more difficult. A nutritionist can work with you to naturally balance your hormones and reduce inflammation. In the long term, this will help you manage your symptoms and help you move in the direction of losing weight.
Weight Loss is not a fast process and you can’t expect immediate results. I remind my clients of this when they’re frustrated.
It took me over a year to lose my weight. It’s long and slow process. Some weeks you’ll lose, some you won’t. Whatever you do, be consistent with how you eat, what you eat and what you do. Consistency leads to long-term results. Stick with it! More importantly, stay positive. A positive attitude has a tremendous effect on the outcome of your goals.