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6 Reasons Why You Can’t Lose Weight, And What To Do About It

6 Reasons Why You Can’t Lose Weight, And What To Do About It

With my experience as a family doctor I know that most people can’t lose weight because they are not working in harmony with their body and mind. For example, going on a restrictive diet is not in harmony with your physiology, and 9 times out of 10 it leads to insignificant weight loss or weight gain further down the road. By eliminating these 6 mistakes you’ll have a much better chance of succeeding with your weight loss.

You Didn’t Set a Clear Goal

goal

    If you don’t make a decision about exactly where you’re going, how are you going to get there? Imagine attempting to go on vacation without knowing the destination, because you haven’t given it thought and come to a decision. When patients come to me for help because they can’t lose weight, my first question is “What do you want?” They often say something like “To be thinner“. This is really vague and it’s like saying you want to go somewhere hot and sunny for your vacation. There’s no clear destination! Your mind needs a definite goal to lock on to. Otherwise you have no focus, no reason to start taking action, or to continue taking it if you manage to make a start in the first place. A definite goal could be something like “I fit into my favourite jeans again and love the way I look!” This is a clear destination.

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    You Didn’t Create a Roadmap

    road map

      Some people get the first bit right, and have a clear goal. But they still can’t lose weight. The next common mistake is not making a plan to get from where you are now, to where you want to go. Most people’s plan is ‘go on a diet and exercise more‘. Did that work last time? Why do you think it will work this time? Think of all the steps you take to make it to your vacation. There are more than 2 aren’t there? You need to create a step by step plan to follow to successfully lose weight. You might want to include the next 4 things in your plan. But you need to make this your plan, and you need to give yourself some time to work it out.

      You Didn’t Identify Your Emotional Eating

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      can't lose weight

        Hands up if you ever eat when you’re not hungry. If your hand isn’t up I don’t think I believe you! You can’t lose weight when you regularly eat if you’re not hungry. These days food is constantly available, and as a result eating to satisfy genuine physical hunger isn’t the only reason people eat. People eat for many other reasons including boredom, stress, and unhappiness. All food eaten when your body doesn’t need it is destined for your fat stores. You need to know this is going on and make a plan of how to overcome this. This may be something you need to learn more about. A friend of mind put on loads of weight when he started working from home. When he needed a break he realized he was going to the fridge and eating. At work he used to have a quick chat with colleagues. This is eating due to boredom. His solution was to go out for a quick walk with his dog when he needed a short break from work.

        You Didn’t Hydrate Yourself

        glass of water

          This is perhaps the easiest thing you can do to improve your health and speed up your weight loss, but are you drinking eight glasses of water each day? There are two reasons keeping yourself properly hydrated helps you lose weight. Imagine a plant that hasn’t had enough water, it is wilting. This is you if you’re not hydrated. Now imagine that same plant standing strong because it’s had enough water. When you’re hydrated you have more energy. When you have more energy you move around more. And you can work out the rest! Not everyone realizes that early hunger and thirst feel the same – it can feel like you’re hungry for food. If you don’t realize this, and you haven’t been hydrating yourself adequately, you’ll end up eating more than you need, with obvious consequences. Keep hydrated, and then the hunger you feel is for food and not water.

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          You Didn’t Avoid Foods That Increase Your Appetite

          white bread

            Refined carbs, like white rice, sugar, fries and things made out of white flour increase your blood sugar dramatically, and very fast. High blood sugar is harmful to your body, so your body’s response is robust – it produces a load of insulin which brings your blood sugar back down quickly. The result is a rebound low blood sugar. This has you feeling really hungry, often only a short time after you’ve eaten. This drives you to eat more, even though you may have already eaten more calories than you need. Cut right down on refined and processed food,because people who eat a lot of this can’t lose weight. Eat whole foods instead.

            You Didn’t Kick Start Your Fat Burning Enzymes

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            sprint

              When people think exercise they often think about going out for a jog, or doing extended cardio workouts in the gym. This type of workout burns fat. But hang on a minute. If your body needs fat for this kind of exercise isn’t it going to make more available for the next time you do it? You body is highly adaptable. If you start doing something that needs fat, your body will make it available. This is why some people can’t lose weight even though they do a lot of cardio workouts, or they pile on a load of weight if they stop. When you do short bursts of high intensity exercise, e.g. like sprinting for 20 seconds 6 times with rest of 60 seconds in between, you don’t burn a lot of fat while you’re doing it. You burn glucose. However, you do burn fat for up to 24 hours after this kind of exercise, and you don’t encourage your body to lay down fat. If you’re exercising for the purpose of weight loss ditch the prolonged cardio workouts and switch to interval training.

              Featured photo credit: Rain run/antony_mayfield via flickr.com

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              Last Updated on September 20, 2018

              How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

              How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

              Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

              If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

              1. Breathe

              The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

              • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
              • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
              • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

              Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

              2. Loosen up

              After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

              Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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              3. Chew slowly

              Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

              Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

              Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

              4. Let go

              Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

              The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

              It’s not. Promise.

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              Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

              Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

              21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

              5. Enjoy the journey

              Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

              Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

              6. Look at the big picture

              The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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              Will this matter to me…

              • Next week?
              • Next month?
              • Next year?
              • In 10 years?

              Hint: No, it won’t.

              I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

              Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

              7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

              You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

              Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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              8. Practice patience every day

              Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

              • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
              • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
              • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

              Final thoughts

              Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

              Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

              Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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