Summary List Placement
Dieting is never easy, but all the challenges should be worth it when you feel better and see results.
For some people, though, those results never come, even if they’re putting in the effort.
Insider spoke to CEO and founding dietitian at New York Nutrition Group Lisa Moskovitz and fitness expert and author of “Finding Your Fit” Kathleen Trotter to find out why some people are not seeing the expected results from their diets.
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You’re too concerned with calories and not enough with nutrition.
From breakfast to dinner to snacks in between, it’s easy to lose track of what you’re eating throughout the day — and counting calories isn’t a foolproof plan, Moskovitz said.
“Unless you sit down and calculate total calories — which can be very difficult, it’s hard to say whether you’re eating the right amount to create the calorie deficit needed for weight loss or fat burning,” she told Insider.
Trotter advised you should be more aware of the nutritional value of food instead of counting calories. In fact, if you’re eating a 100-calorie snack and it has no nutritional value, then it’s not helping. Instead, turn to snacks with a slightly higher calorie count that have a better nutritional value and will keep you full longer.
You may be stressed and sleep-deprived.
Your mental state has a lot of effect on your physical body, and there is a link between your emotions and your weight loss.
“Even with a perfect diet and plenty of activity, if you aren’t getting enough Z’s or have chronically high-stress levels, your body may hold on to extra pounds and body fat instead of burning them,” Moskovitz said.
Instead, carve out time in your week for extra sleep or for yoga. Meditating and calming your body can have positive effects, and you might even see faster results.
You’re not eating enough.
The first impulse when starting a diet is to drastically cut back on your portions, but if you’re skipping meals and avoiding food, it can actually have an adverse effect.
“Under-eating can force your body to hoard or store all calories instead of burning them as a protective mechanism,” Moskovitz told Insider. “It can also slow down your metabolism.”
Just because you feel hungry, doesn’t mean you’re on track to lose weight. You need to find the right balance for your body.
You’re eating unhealthy healthy foods.
It’s easy to fall into traps while dieting. If you’re buying foods that are packaged as “low-fat” or “low sodium,” you may be doing more harm than good. Granola bars and low-fat yogurts are not helping you lose weight — in fact, Trotter advises to stay away from packaged foods entirely.
Likewise, there are healthy foods that still need to be consumed in moderation. Trotter said some of her clients eat an entire box of nuts, thinking they’re making a good choice. But, in reality, the quantity is having a negative effect on their diet.
“A little bit goes a long way,” Trotter said.
Your workout is too stagnant.
If cardio is your jam and it’s the only exercise you’re doing, you may need to switch up your fitness routine.
“Instead of simply getting on an elliptical and zoning out for 20 minutes, one needs to do intervals. With intervals, you alternate between bouts of high- and low-intensity training,” Trotter said. “This places a high metabolic demand on the body and burns lots of calories in a short amount of time.”
Stepping outside of your comfort zone will spark changes in your body mentally and physically.
You may be facing a larger health issue.
Moskovitz pointed out that some people may not be seeing results because of a larger health issue. In some cases, it’s an under-active thyroid, insulin sensitivity, or a medication you’re using.
You should speak with a doctor if you’re not seeing results over a long period of healthy eating and working out. But, keep in mind that progress takes time.
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