Are you Struggling to Hit Your Goal Weight?
It may not be all about the calories – there may be other factors.
Fitness Tips and Healthy Harry says:
- You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
A lack of sleep may be hindering your weight loss goals. Sleep deprivation can slow down your metabolism and affect the hunger hormones known as leptin and ghrelin. The role of leptin is to tell your brain to stop eating, whereas ghrelin, produced in the stomach, stimulates hunger. Research has shown that not enough sleep is associated with low levels of leptin, high levels of ghrelin and weight gain.
What can you do? Turn off your phones and all technology, go to bed early, make sure your room is dark and cool and avoid all drugs including cigarettes, alcohol and sleeping pills.
- You’re Eating Hidden Sugars
Hidden sugars are absolutely everywhere. Some of the biggest culprits are diet yoghurts, muesli bars, breakfast cereals, sport drinks, sauces and spreads. Even be wary that some peanut butters have added sugar in them. When we add these hidden sugars into our foods on a regular basis they can all contribute to conditions including dental decay, diabetes, heart disease and obesity.
What can you do? Read food labels and avoid products with high amounts of added sugar. It may be listed in various ways including corn syrup, sucrose, malt, glucose, molasses, fructose, maltose or fruit juice concentrate.
- Be Aware of Calories but also the Nutrients You are Eating
There is no question that your food portions need to be smaller in order to lose weight. However be aware not to overlook an important aspect of food –the nutrients.
What can you do? Think about quality. Choose nutrient dense foods and nourish your body with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants such as those found in fruit, vegetables and whole foods.
- You Are absorbing Environmental Oestrogens
These are also known as xenoestrogens which are synthetic chemicals and found in plastics, fertilisers, detergents and some cosmetics. While there are still studies being done on this topic it is thought that they can mimic oestrogen. Excess oestrogen can result in weight gain in both men and women.
What can you do? Throw out the plastic drink bottles and containers and opt for glass instead and aim to buy organic products wherever possible.
- You Sit Down Too Much
You may have the excuse that you are too busy to move but in reality our bodies are meant to move.
What can you do? Keep moving and fidgeting! Research suggests that continually moving especially if you are in a sedentary job – such as cross and uncrossing your legs, stretching, standing up often and maintaining good posture throughout the day. Aim to move every 30 minutes throughout your day.
- You Don’t Have Time to Cook
In the busy lives that everyone leads this has resulted in less time for food preparation in the home. Grabbing take away and meals on the go is not good for your waistline.
What can you do? Set a goal to try a new and healthy 20 minute meal each week. When you make a meal, cook extra and freeze portions for the days that you won’t have time to cook.
- You’re Dealing with a Hormone Condition
There are many hormone conditions such as hypothyroidism, polycystic ovarian syndrome and insulin resistance can all cause weight gain.
What can you do? Talk to your GP and get tested. If you do have any of these conditions keeping to a healthy food regime will be very helpful. Ensure to exclude refined carbohydrates and increase your intake of good quality protein, vegetables, seaweed and essential fatty acids.
- You’re Not Eating Enough Good Fats
Unfortunately since the introduction of low fat foods we have now seen an increase in obesity around the world.
What can you do? Forget your negative view on fat and include a small amount of “good” fats in each meal Include essential fatty acids such as flaxseed oil, oily fish, nuts and seeds.
- You Believe the Food Hype
Be wary of the marketing hype around some foods. For example the package may say it is a good source of calcium or have no artificial colours but may still be packed with sugar.
What can you do? Read the ingredient list on the food products you buy. If sugar is listed in the first three ingredients or has chemicals you haven’t heard of then don’t buy it.
- Your Body has a Set Point
The set point theory says that our body is programmed to be a certain weight and will fight to stay at that weight.
What can you do? Steady weight loss through a balanced diet and exercise is the only proven way to lower your set point. Aim for no more than one kilogram per week and give your body plenty of time to adjust.