Losing weight is tough, and it can even be more frustrating when you suddenly stop losing weight despite adhering to your diet plan and continuous exercise. This phenomenon is called a weight-loss plateau. Endocrinologist Shirisha Avadhanula, MD, explained that one of
the reasons why a weight-loss plateau occurs is because your body thinks that it’s starving. When you begin losing weight, even with a healthy diet, your body still perceives that as starvation. This is because there’s a set point at which your body thinks is its ideal weight.
As a result, your body produces regulatory hormones that increase hunger to persuade you to eat more.
However, experiencing this phenomenon is perfectly normal, and it doesn’t mean you can no longer lose weight. If you feel like you’ve reached a weight-loss plateau, remember that most people trying to lose weight also experience the same thing.
Blaming yourself for failing to lose some weight is futile. Instead, here are four productive tips to overcome your weight-loss plateau and help you get back on track:
Increase Your Exercise Intensity
One way to overcome the weight-loss plateau is by exercising more. Dr Avadhanula also shared that a weight-loss plateau happens because your body becomes more efficient at conserving energy. With this, doing the same exercise routine for three consecutive
months will not help you burn the same amount of calories as you did when you initially started. If you burn 300 calories during a workout at the beginning of your new exercise routine, your body will eventually adapt, and the number of calories you burn will also
Therefore, you should challenge yourself and increase the intensity of your exercise routine. Dr Avadhanula said that exercising should be hard. If you’re not breaking a sweat at the end of your workout, that means your body is used to the exercise, and you’re not burning
calories at the same rate.
Re-ignite Your Motivation
Sometimes, a weight-loss plateau can happen if you skip a few days of exercise or stop following your diet plan. Because of this, you might see your weight-loss progress slow down or even digress. This shows how having strong willpower to remain motivated is
important in every weight-loss journey. However, licensed clinical psychologist Sherry Pagoto, PhD, claimed that you shouldn’t always blame yourself for your lack of motivation to lose weight. Every now and then, our lack of motivation to lose weight may stem from
what’s around us, such as triggers at home that make it hard to follow our diet plan.
An example of triggers at home is the food that you love to eat but will sabotage your weight-loss plan. To avoid this from happening, make a list of food you should avoid eating or should eat less. Once you’ve determined these foods, keep them away from your reach
or buy less of them when you go grocery shopping to ensure that you will eat them in moderation.
Eat More Protein
Some people may think that skipping meals will help them lose weight. Although it's true, it is not the healthiest method to lose weight. Our previous post on weight management shared that your weight-loss plan should always ensure that you have a healthy balanced diet. If you’re having difficulties losing weight, increasing your protein intake may help you instead of removing them from your diet. A study on high-protein diet-induced weight loss showed that consuming more protein not only reduces body weight. It also enhances body composition by decreasing fat mass while preserving fat-free mass. This means you’re losing unnecessary fats, but you’re also keeping your muscles strong. Moreover, high-protein diets are more satiating than lower-protein diets, which helps you reduce the amount of food you need.
Apart from a balanced diet, it’s also better to eat your meals at regular intervals instead of skipping meals to avoid overeating. This will help you achieve your weight-loss goals faster and in a healthier way.