This does NOT mean that you are not losing fat. Body weight tends to fluctuate by a few pounds. It depends on the foods you are eating, and hormones can also have a major effect on how much water your body holds on to (especially in women). Also, it is possible to gain muscle at the same time as you lose fat
1. You’re Not Sleeping Well
Good sleep is one of the most important things to consider for your physical and mental health, as well as your weight.
Studies show that poor sleep is one of the single biggest risk factors for obesity. Adults and children with poor sleep have a 55% and 89% greater risk of becoming obese.
2. You’re Eating Too Often
It is a myth that everyone should be eating many, small meals each day in order to boost metabolism and lose weight.
The studies actually show that meal frequency has little or no effect on fat burning or weight loss.
It is also ridiculously inconvenient to be preparing and eating food all day. It makes healthy nutrition much more complicated.
There is even an incredibly effective weight loss method called intermittent fasting, which involves deliberately going without food for extended periods of time (15-24 hours or more). You can read about that here.
3. You’re Not Drinking Water
Drinking water can have benefits for weight loss.
In one 12-week weight loss study, people who drank half a liter (17 oz) of water 30 minutes before meals lost 44% more weight (32).
Drinking water has also been shown to boost the amount of calories burned by 24-30% over a period of 1.5 hours (33, 34).
4. You’re Drinking Too Much Alcohol
If you like alcohol but want to lose weight, then it may be best to stick to spirits (like vodka) mixed with a non-caloric beverage. Beer, wine and sugary alcoholic beverages are very high in calories.
Also keep in mind that the alcohol itself has about 7 calories per gram, which is high.
That being said, the studies on alcohol and weight show mixed results. Moderate drinking seems to be fine, while heavy drinking is linked to weight gain.
5. You’re Not Eating Mindfully
A technique called mindful eating may be one of the world’s most powerful weight loss tools.
It involves slowing down, eating without distraction, savoring and enjoying each bite, while listening for the natural signals that tell your brain when it has had enough.
Numerous studies have shown that mindful eating can cause significant weight loss and reduce the frequency of binge eating.
6. You’re Addicted to Junk Food
If you are addicted to junk food, then simply eating less or changing your diet can seem downright impossib
7. You’ve Been Starving Yourself For Too Long
It may not be a good idea to “diet” for too long.
If you’ve been losing weight for many months and you’ve hit a plateau, then perhaps you just need to take a break.
Up your calorie intake by a few hundred calories per day, sleep more and lift some weights with the goal of getting stronger and gaining a bit of muscle.
Aim to maintain your body fat levels for 1-2 months before you start trying to lose again.
8. You’re Too Focused on “Dieting”
“Diets” almost never work in the long term. If anything, studies actually show that people who “diet” gain more weight over time.
Instead of approaching this from a dieting mindset, make it your primary goal to become a happier, healthier and fitter person.
Focus on nourishing your body instead of depriving it, and let weight loss follow as a natural side effect.
9. You’re Not Keeping Track of What You’re Eating
Awareness is incredibly important if you are trying to lose weight. Many people actually don’t have a clue how much they’re really eating.
Studies show that keeping track of your diet helps with weight loss. People who use food diaries, or take pictures of their meals, consistently lose more weight than people who don’t (1, 2).
10. You’re Not Eating Enough Protein
Protein is the single most important nutrient for losing weight.
Eating protein at 25-30% of calories can boost metabolism by 80-100 calories per day and make you automatically eat several hundred fewer calories per day. It can also drastically reduce cravings and desire for snacking.
This is partly mediated by protein’s effects on appetite-regulating hormones, such as ghrelin and others.
If you eat breakfast, then this is the most important meal to load up on the protein. Studies show that those who eat a high-protein breakfast are less hungry and have fewer cravings throughout the day.
A high protein intake also helps prevent metabolic slowdown, a common side effect of losing weight. It also helps to prevent weight regain
11. You’re Still Drinking Sugar
Sugary beverages are the most fattening items in the food supply. Our brains don’t compensate for the calories in them by making us eat less of other foods.
This isn’t only true of sugary drinks like Coke and Pepsi; it also applies to “healthier” beverages like Vitaminwater – which are also loaded with sugar.
Even fruit juices are problematic, and should not be consumed in large amounts. A single glass can contain a similar amount of sugar as several pieces of whole fruit!