Do you work really hard to lose weight and find that you hardly lose any? There are 3 main factors that may be hindering your progress. Evaluate the problem and let’s find solutions.
- Stress. Stress leads to higher levels of cortisol hormones which results in weight gain. Under chronic stress, the body thinks you’ve used the calories and prompts overeating. Extra cortisol also elevates higher insulin level, which lowers blood sugar and leads to cravings for sugary and fatty foods.
- Sleep. Lack of sleep triggers the hunger hormone, ghrelin, which means we eat more and gain weight. Sleep is also an important time for the body to repair and regenerate. Try to create a consistent daily sleep schedule.
- Poor digestion. If you’re experiencing bloating, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, excessive gas, etc, your nutrition may not be properly absorbed. Due to toxic build up as a result of these symptoms and because of your diet, this also slows down metabolism. This is why it’s so important to focus on proper nutrition and not rely on packaged, convenient foods and take-outs. If you eat processed foods even with calorie deficit, this toxic build up leads to more weight gain.
Unfortunately, the above are all issues that most Americans experience. I’d like to emphasize how important it is to address all of them in order for weight loss to truly be effective. Give yourself time and compassion to resolve. Berating yourself because the scale isn’t budging only backfires. I know it’s frustrating but one issue is already a giant task let alone if you have to address all three. We didn’t get here overnight so we can’t expect to change/fix overnight either but we can change with time, self-care, and enjoy this journey.
You might also ask “how do I get rid of fat?” Fat is stored energy so the body converts fat to usable energy for muscle and tissue maintenance. As we use the stored energy, the fat cells shrink. The rest of the fat is exhaled through carbon dioxide, peed through urine, and sweated out through pores, which is why drinking water and exercising is so important. Exercise really does help us exhale more fat. (Don’t go out hyperventilating to get rid of fat though. It doesn’t work that way). Aim for at least 150 minutes per week at moderate to intense workouts.
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~ Samantha Hua, Nutrition, Weight Loss, and Holistic Health Coach, San Diego, CA