Weight loss resistance is a symptom and a response to an underlying imbalance that encompasses lifestyle, hormones and your environment including systemic inflammation, toxic overload, impaired detoxification, nutrient deficiencies, and emotional, hormonal or metabolic imbalances.
Losing weight (and more importantly, keeping it off) encompasses so much more than diet and exercise. Of course, nutrient-dense organic foods and moving your body are important factors of the weight loss equation, but your lifestyle choices, emotions, unique biochemistry, genetics, hormones, and your environment must be factored into the weight loss equation.
Are you frustrated with your weight, struggling to lose weight, and no matter what you do nothing seems to work? Is the diet and exercise program that has always worked for you in the past no longer working or producing the results you’d like? You may be making a few “weight loss mistakes,” that are sabotaging your weight loss efforts. A few subtle changes may be all you need to breakthrough your weight loss plateau.
Hormone connection. Estrogen dominance, insulin resistance, adrenal insufficiency, leptin resistance and thyroid dysfunction are common hormonal imbalances that affect metabolism and hinder fat loss. It’s important to sources of xenoestrogens, increase insulin sensitivity, balance the thyroid and optimize cortisol levels for success weight loss.
Adrenal insufficiency is the #1 hormone imbalance for women that leads to fluctuations in cortisol, insulin, thyroid dysfunction and other hormonal imbalances. Find a healthy way to create peace, sympathetic tone and calm your nervous system: yin or restorative yoga, walk your dog, practice daily meditation and breathing exercises, spend time in nature, listen to relaxing music or something inspirational, read the Bible or something spiritual, soak in an Epsom salt bath or utilize emWave HeartMath to identify inner emotional stress and help restore balance mentally and emotionally.
Impaired detoxification and toxic chemical exposure. Your liver, kidneys, colon and body is overloaded with toxins from an overexposure to harmful chemicals including toxic heavy metals, Rx or OTC drug use, processed foods, pesticides, herbicides, GMOs, artificial sweeteners, bacterial infections, Candida overgrowth, plastics, obesogens, dirty air, unfiltered water… the list is endless!
We’re exposed to more toxic chemicals nowadays compared to 20-30 years ago that trigger weight gain, congest the liver, and negatively impact hormones!
Artificial sweeteners, fructose corn syrup, wheat, gluten, pesticides, glyphosate, and factory-farmed animal protein that has been injected with xenohormones and antibiotics have a huge impact on our ability to lose body fat. The old saying “you are what you eat” applies here. When you eat animal protein that is not organic, pasture-raised and grass-fed, you’re getting a healthy dose of synthetic hormones, antibiotics, grains, GMOs, glyphosate, genetically engineered corn and soy, and a boatload of other chemicals. Eating conventionally-raised, non-organic factory-farmed animal protein disrupts hormones, alters the gut microbiome, causes digestive dysfunction, estrogen dominance, increases inflammation, and as a result your waist line and body fat increase. Eat organic foods for what they don’t have in them!
Gallbladder dysfunction. If you’re not metabolizing fats well, you won’t be able to use the calories they provide, which leads to blood sugar imbalances. Blood sugar instability causes hormonal imbalances leading to weight loss resistance. Symptoms of congested, sticky bile and gallbladder dysfunction
Congested liver. Your liver is an important organ for fat loss and a healthy metabolism. An unhealthy or congested liver may obstruct bile flow, resulting in inefficient toxin removal, toxin accumulation, and fat that is recirculated through the liver.
Sleep for greater weight loss. Are you failing to value the importance of 7-9 hours of restful, uninterrupted sleep every night? Good sleep is crucial to optimize fat loss, strong immunity, hormonal balance, healthy brain function, a happy mood, and it’s nature’s best natural anti-aging remedy and repair mechanism!
As you sleep, the cells in your brain remove metabolic waste and toxins. Skimping on sleep stops brain cells from firing properly, triggers inflammation, excess cortisol (which cues your body to store fat), and too much ghrelin (a hormone that stimulates appetite).
Blue light at night. Exposure to blue light at night from smartphones, computers and iPads alter your metabolism, increase insulin resistance, raise blood glucose, lower melatonin levels and increase risk of diabetes, and contribute to excess weight! Night owls tend to have higher body fat, more belly fat, increased triglycerides, and are more likely to develop diabetes, metabolic syndrome and sarcopenia (age-related muscle loss).
Disrupted circadian rhythms and artificial light negatively alter brain function, and have a huge impact on sleep quality, hormone balance, metabolism, your ability to lose body fat, energy levels, gut microbiome, mitochondrial health, physical strength, body temperature, cell regeneration. and overall behavioral, hormonal and metabolic function. Rise with the sun and lights out by 10pm.
Sunlight deficiency. Get a daily dose of natural vitamin D from the sun to boost immunity, reset your circadian rhythm and balance hormones.
Poor food choice. Are you eating too many carbohydrates? Skimping on protein, veggies, greens and healthy fats? Do you avoid eating fat because you think it will make you fat? On top of that, you love a couple of glasses of wine every night. Protein-rich foods promote greater thermogenesis (fat burning) and satiety than high-carbohydrate and low-fat foods. Diets with an abundance of fiber from leafy greens and veggies, a sufficient amount of organic protein and healthy fats will decrease ghrelin (a hormone that stimulates hunger), reduce cravings, and support healthy weight loss compared to a carb heavy, low-fat and protein-deficient diet.
Food sensitivities are a common cause of weight loss resistance. Along with hormone imbalances and poor intestinal health, the connection between food sensitivities and weight loss resistance must be explored. Try an elimination diet for 4-6 weeks. Cut out the most common food allergens: dairy, wheat, gluten, eggs, corn, yeast, artificial sweeteners, processed soy and peanuts.
Keep a food journal. Research has found that those who jot down what they eat lose more weight!
Are you “tipping the tea cup” too often? How much alcohol do you drink each week? Each night? Drinking as little as one ounce of vodka will slow metabolism by as much as 73%! Realize that over-indulging in alcohol raises cortisol, and if you drink a couple of glasses of wine every night, it’s going to be very difficult to lose weight, reduce body fat, balance your hormones, and lose belly fat.
Mindless eating. You’re not practicing mindfulness when you eat, and before you know it you’ve consumed enough food to feed an entire family of four. Sit down during meal time, turn off your cell phone, TV and computer. Chew every bite of food thoroughly. Set your utensil down between bites.
Food is information, not just in the way that the nutrients affect our cell membranes and DNA, but also through the stories we tell ourselves when we eat. Pay attention to and make note of the internal dialogue that arises around food choices or cravings. It may be accompanied by breathing/relaxation exercises, prayer or learning a mindfulness meditation.
Non-stop snacking. You graze all day long (eating every 2-3 hours) or mindlessly polish off a bowl of M&Ms everyday that sit on your desk. Every time you snack, insulin rises and sends a message to store fat. Stick to three meals daily (perhaps even two meals), and if you’re truly hungry reach for a nutrient-dense snack that will nourish your body and your brain.
Hydration for greater weight loss. Simply drinking more water is a natural weight loss remedy and solution to eliminate toxins, keep your skin hydrated (less wrinkles), reduce cravings, headaches, aches and pains, lessen toxic load, prevent constipation, and increase energy!
Drinking 10-20 ounces of water upon rising, and again before meals supports greater weight loss. Be sure your water is filtered to avoid endocrine disruptors, fluoride, chlorine, toxic heavy metals, prescription drugs, and other hidden contaminants.
Nutrient deficiencies. Getting the correct amount of nutrients can help you burn fat, increase insulin sensitivity, stabilize hormones, and build and maintain muscle mass. Deficiencies of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B6 and magnesium can adversely affect healthy fat metabolism. Certain nutrients have been clinically shown to improve thyroid function.
OTC medications and prescription drugs. Many prescription drugs for mood disorders, depression, diabetes, high blood pressure and seizures are linked to weight gain. The use of Rx drugs has risen dramatically since the ‘70s and ‘80s. Antidepressants have been linked to weight gain and are now one of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the U.S. Rather than taking a ‘pill for an ill,’ it’s crucial to identify the root causes, support your body with the proper nutrients, and factor in lifestyle and environmental factors to heal naturally.
Gut health and microbiome. The microbiomes of Americans have changed between the 1980s and now. It’s well known that specific types of gut bacteria make a person more prone to weight gain and obesity. Changes in the gut microbiome result from leaky gut, insufficient levels and imbalanced healthy flora, pharmaceutical and OTC medications, antibiotic overuse, being born via C-section, underlying infections, poor food choice, chronic stress and so much more.
Move more. Take periodic breaks from sitting. Set a timer or notification as a reminder to get up and mover your body.
Too much or the wrong type of exercise. Are you exercising too much without proper recovery modalities and nutrition? Exercising more and eating less results in a metabolic disaster that impacts your hormones and can backfire. Realize that exercising excessively is disruptive to your body and negatively alters hormones, fries the adrenal glands, accelerates aging, increases inflammation, breaks a body down and is counterproductive for a lean, fit, strong and healthy body.
There are times when taking a break from exercise may be the exact formula your body needs. Instead of hitting the gym, take a leisure walk, practice yin or restorative yoga, rebounding on a mini trampoline and other restorative activities to reset your hormones and metabolism.
A daily walk can cut your risk of obesity in half! Walking is a powerful activity that improves insulin sensitivity and is beneficial in balancing cortisol.
“Walking is man’s best medicine.” –Hippocrates
Are you over-doing the cardio? Do you spend hours at the gym on the elliptical machine, treadmill or stairclimber expecting a different result in lieu of hitting the weights or sprinting? Take your workout outdoors, onto the track, a bicycle, find a hill or some stairs and sprint! A bonus: you’ll spend less time and reap greater results. Don’t be afraid of lifting heavy weights (as long as you’re form is pristine). Follow the exercise programs found in Fat Loss Revolution.
Although, there’s a time and place for lighter weights as you progress lifting weights that are heavy enough to stimulate a hormonal response without compromising form and technique is the formula for greater fat loss. Periodize your workout programs by manipulating reps and sets. Hire a qualified coach to design an exercise program.
Rest, relax and restore. Underestimating and undervaluing the importance of relaxation, restoration and rest days may be the very reason you’re not losing weight. You’re fearful that if you’re not kickin-butt, sweating your brains out, or running 10 miles every single day that you’ll gain weight. Actually, if you continue down that route exercising intensely every single day and fail to listen to your body, it’ll eventually break down and you’ll struggle with weight loss resistance and disrupted hormones. It’s important to balance more intense workouts with calming, parasympathetic yin-style activities. Schedule yin or restorative yoga, Qi gong, Tai chi, walking, leisure bike rides, gardening or yard work into your week.
Inflammation is the root source of many chronic health conditions including weight loss resistance. Various sources of inflammation will hinder fat loss such as food sensitivities, underlying infections, exposure to toxins and too many chemicals, negative thoughts, mental and emotional stress, nutrient deficiencies, leaky gut and oxidative stress.
Undernourished and overfed. This is a very common and overlooked problem. Possibilities are malabsorption issues, gut dysfunction, underlying infections, leaky gut syndrome, dehydration, low stomach acid, bile insufficiency, nutrient deficiencies or the wrong food choice.
Counting calories instead of nutrients. Are you obsessed with counting every calorie? All calories are not created equal. A chicken breast at 300 calories vs bagel at 300 calories have a completely different effect hormonally, metabolically and on your level of satiety. It’s the hormonal response and nutrient quality that matters most.
Using the scale. Are you weighing yourself every day? Remember, there’s a difference between weight loss and fat loss. Ditch the scale and instead focus on how your clothes fit, take photos every two weeks or hire a qualified coach to measure your body composition.
Damaged metabolism. Your metabolism becomes damaged from years of dieting, fasting, sleep deprivation, counting every calorie, excessive exercise, psychological stress, or fat-phobia, excluding fat in your diet. The metabolism must be healed before successful weight loss can become fat loss and before sustainable health can become reality.
Are you changing too many things at once? Commit to one or two small changes per week and gradually add a couple more healthy changes every week. Over time those small changes create profound transformation. You’re not seeing results after a week or two and jump to the next best (worst) thing. Any results-oriented program that is not a quick fix takes at least 12 weeks of consistency and requires a healthy mindset, a healthy lifestyle vs one of instant gratification. It’s an ongoing process.
Everything’s interconnected. Our thoughts, who and what we surround ourselves with, our emotions, words, self-love and self-compassion or lack of all have a profound impact on our ability to lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle.
The body is an effect of what happens in the mind. Consequently, the attempts to solve the weight problem, which are addressed to the body only are notoriously unsuccessful. —David Hawkins, MD
Energy is contagious. Who is in your close circle? Do they support your weight loss efforts and healthy lifestyle, or sabotage it? If your circle of friends or family members are negative, eat processed foods or they’re party animals, chances are that you are too. If your friend or spouse overeat, there’s a 57% high tendency that you’ll overeat as well. Be conscious of those in your close circle. Minimize time spent with people, places or things that are low-vibration, energy-sucking vampires that don’t support your weight loss efforts and healthy lifestyle.
Does it work for you? You’re following the exact diet and exercise program your sister, friend, or your trainer is doing, yet fail to see results. Invest in yourself and hire a qualified, experienced coach/practitioner that will design a lifestyle plan that is bio-individualized for you, one that works specifically for your unique biochemistry, age, activity level and lifestyle. Determine what works best for you and leave the rest.
Focus on health first and fat loss will happen naturally!
Weight loss resistance goes far beyond poor food choice and lack of exercise. Other lifestyle and environmental factors such as pollutants, toxic overload, stress, sleep, emotions, timing of food intake, gut bacteria, hormones, epigenetics, nutrient deficiencies, unique biochemistry, and medication use MUST be factored into the weight loss equation.
All of these factors are considered to influence metabolism either directly or indirectly, because metabolism is thought to be affected by lifestyle, environment and hormone balance, and not just by heredity and caloric intake.
These common, yet overlooked weight loss mistakes encourage you to think outside of the conventional weight loss box. The good news? Solutions that promise healthy, permanent fat loss can be found in The Power of 4 and Fat Loss Revolution. Remember, fat loss is a journey, it’s a process and a lifestyle.