I know, I know... just reading the words “weight loss plateau” makes you feel stressed out. Many of you may even be asking yourself, “wait what is plateau anyway?”...
Weight loss plateau is when you’re on track to losing the weight you hope to, you’re on a routine, everything’s going as planned, you’re getting closer to your goal, and you stop! Nothing is nudging this scale!
It is very common but VERY frustrating…
When you start losing weight, the weight drops more easily. This is due to the fact that when you cut calories, your body gets its needed energy by releasing storages of glycogen (a type of carbohydrate found in muscles and liver). Glycogen is partly water so when it’s burned for energy, it releases water. This makes you lose weight, which is mostly actually water.
As you lose weight, you lose some muscle with the fat. Muscle helps keep the rate at which you burn calories up (metabolism). So, as you lose weight, your metabolism goes down, causing you to burn less calories then you did at your heavier weight.
Slower metabolism = slower weight loss, even if you eat the same food that helped you lose weight initially. When the calories burned is the same number as the calories you’ve ate, then you reached plateau.
If you keep eating the same food, you will maintain your weight but you won’t lose more weight.
How can you overcome weight loss plateau?
1. Food journal – Are you not sure how much you eat? Write it down and see EXACTLY where you can cut down.
2. Add a workout or change your current one in order to burn more calories.
3. As I mentioned before – stress. When you’re stressed out, your body will release cortisol – a hormone that’s linked to an increased appetite and more belly fat.
4. Sleep – make sure you get a good night sleep. Lack of sleep can increase cravings and hunger. When you’re tired, your body will do everything it can to remain safe, even if this means not losing weight.
5. Water. Make sure you’re drinking enough water. Sometimes we look at thirst as hunger, which makes us eat more.
6. Eat more! When we lose weight, we also lose fat. The less fat we have, the less leptin (the satiety hormone) you produce, which tells the brain to conserve calories to prevent starving. Research shows that the best way to boost your leptin production is to eat more carbohydrates. Carbs tell your brain that you are not going to starve and to burn calories at a normal rate. Eat a meal or two with carbohydrates and see what will happen. It may trick your brain into increasing your calorie burn, resulting in weight loss.
7. Eat protein, and spread it throughout the day.
8. It’s not all about the scale. See how you feel with your favorite pair of jeans or button-down shirt. Sometimes you loose the inches but the numbers on the scale don’t move. Don’t get stuck on numbers. Don’t let the scale reverse your positive attitude.
Need more advice and help to look and feel healthier? Contact me - HealthierbySharon@gmail.com