You’ve been sticking to a fiber- and protein-laden diet, you’re exercising diligently, and you’ve been working to move more during the work day. In short, you’re doing everything you can to lose weight. So it’s really frustrating when any attempt at losing weight doesn’t show up on the scale. You may be making some mistakes you didn’t even realize were mistakes. Check out these five reasons to see why you’re still not seeing the scale tip.
1. You think about how healthy your choices are
We all know the power of positive thinking, but your feel-good thoughts can be detrimental when it comes to diet. Alia Crum, a Ph.D. candidate and researcher at Yale University, told Health her work has shown simply believing your meal is lighter can lead to a spike in ghrelin, a hormone that makes you feel hungry. This means even the most satisfying salad loaded with grilled chicken and sliced avocado could still leave your stomach rumbling. The publication went on to say focusing on the more indulgent parts of the meal — think cheese or a little bit of bacon — will help you feel more satisfied.
2. You eat too fast
Life is not an eating contest, so there’s no reason why you should be scarfing down your food in record time. If losing some pounds is a priority, you need to set aside time to really enjoy your food. WebMD explains slowing down allows more time for your body to get the signal it’s full. Eating too fast, on the other hand, leads most people to go well past that point without realizing it. By the time you feel full, you might really be stuffed. Taking a slower approach means you’ll actually taste each bite, too. You may find your meal a lot more satisfying when you really take the time to savor all the flavors.
3. Overdoing it with healthy foods
Eating too much of any food, even the healthiest options, can come back to bite you in your behind. Let’s use everyone’s favorite fruit, the avocado, as an example. Avocados are brimming with nutrients, but they also contain a lot of calories. As Eat This, Not That! explains, keeping tabs on your portion size is the only way you can use this ingredient as a tool for weight loss. Instead of going for guacamole or another avocado spread, try diced or sliced. It’ll make it much easier to keep track of exactly how much you’re eating.
4. You’re overly consistent with your workout routine
Your workouts could be hurting your weight-loss results for a few different reasons. The first has to do with the amount you end up eating. Anna-Lisa Finger, R.D. and personal trainer, told Fitness that people often eat a little more when they work out because they think they’ve scorched more calories than they actually have or because they feel like they deserve a reward. Either way, you’ll wind up eating more than you should.
Sticking to the exact same routine is also problematic because your body will adapt to the exercise. This means the same workout that once led to success may no longer be effective. Experts recommend you regularly change up your workouts so your body is always guessing.
5. You skip meals
It’s a myth that skipping breakfast, or any meal for that matter, saves calories. In fact, research suggests those who eat breakfast may be less likely to gain weight in the future. Missing a meal will only leave you starving, increasing your chances of overeating later in the day. Stick to regular meals filled with produce, whole grains, and lean protein, and you’ll be much better off.