Have you been trying to lose weight, but are failing miserably? Although weight loss seems simple on paper—reduce net calories to lose weight—in practice it can be quite complex. Here are five things to look out for that may be leading to your weight gain.
It seems contradictory, but apparently diet soda leads to weight gain. According to a study by researchers in Texas, for each diet soda a person drinks, they are 65% more likely to become overweight during the next 7-8 years. That’s a long time for a delayed effect, but it’s not impossible. Another study looked at about 5000 individuals and found that diet soda consumption was linked to a significantly higher risk of diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
One potential mechanism is compensatory eating (see below), but it may also be that the artificial sweeteners in diet soda interfere with the body’s ability to process real sugar.
Compensatory eating is one common reason why people don’t lose weight when they’re dieting and exercising. Many people may go through what they consider a grueling workout thinking that they burned many more calories than they actually did. As a result, they may “reward” themselves with a dessert that actually has more calories than they burned in their workout, resulting in a net calorie increase due to exercising.
If you are stressed, it may be the cause of your weight gain. Stress often causes people to overeat and especially to eat high-fat and high-sugar “comfort foods.” This can lead to significant weight gain. Make sure you have your stress under control to try to avoid stress eating. If you can’t control your stress, interrogate your motive any time you eat. If it’s for stress, nix it. Also, make sure you’re not skipping meals. This can help you have fuel to resist the temptation of stress eating.
As we age, our sex hormone levels diminish, which can have many effects, including weight gain. This is most pronounced in women during menopause, but it happens to men, too. To counter hormone-related weight gain, try putting yourself on a diet that includes both calorie reduction and exercise increase. Exercise can help you stimulate your body’s endocrine system to produce more sex hormones. You’ll not only look younger, you’ll feel younger, too.
One of the most insidious causes of mysterious weight gain is sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a condition in which your body’s air supply gets cut off during sleep, forcing you to partly awaken to restore air. This can have serious consequences in terms of your cardiovascular system, but it can also disrupt your metabolism. It can lead to an increase of a hunger hormone and decreases in a hormone that helps your body regulate energy consumption and food intake. The result is that you will eat more and gain more weight.
If you are trying hard to lose weight, but can’t tell why you’re not succeeding, talk to your doctor about sleep apnea. It may save your life.
During your consultation at Med-Fit Medical Weight Loss Clinic, we can talk about all these potential causes for your weight gain and get rid of them to craft you a successful weight loss plan. Please contact us today for a location at our Denver office.