ways to bypass Weight Loss Plateau
Experts offer advice on how to get back on track with your weight-loss plan.
Have you reached a weight-loss stalemate? It’s difficult to believe that your weight-loss regimen has been shedding pounds for weeks. The scales then refused to budge another ounce.
Don’t lose hope. It’s common to hit a weight-loss snag. You’ll slip off the wagon from time to time, no matter how dedicated you are to your excellent health regimen. Experts say the key to getting back on track is to learn the skills and gain self-awareness that will help you recover after a relapse.
For you to attempt right now, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 plateau-busting tactics.
- 1. Visualize yourself as vibrant and healthy.
Have a successful vision in mind. According to Katherine Tallmadge, MA, RD, author of Diet Simple, the mind is a powerful instrument that should be used to attain your goals.
Imagine yourself dancing in a stunning black dress at an upcoming party, and then repeat that vision every day to stay motivated.
While you’re daydreaming, keep in mind that excess weight and yo-yo dieting are both unhealthy. Make sure this is a long-term commitment to better health rather than a quick fix to lose 10 pounds before bathing suit season, which you may regain once you stop.
- 2. Recognize Your Personality When It Comes to Weight Loss
According to Thomas Przybeck, our attitudes toward food are influenced by our personalities. Przybeck, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, advises that you understand your tendencies and customize your strategy to combat them.
Impulsive. “You might notice a pint of Ben & Jerry’s in the freezer and go for it if you have a tendency to be impulsive,” Przybeck explains. Obviously, you’re on a diet and need to get rid of those temptations.
Oblivious. If you tend to eat without paying attention—perhaps you’re a TV snacker?—you should avoid such settings if you want to keep your portions under control.
Uptight. If you’re apprehensive, you’ll undoubtedly have a harder time, “Przybeck says.” “Anxious, nervous, and sad people may eat to feel better.”
tenacious Some people have an easier time shedding weight than others. Przybeck adds, “You will have an easier time if you are highly self-directed, cooperative, and have a lot of stick-to-it-iveness.”
sociable Przybeck also discovered that people who keep better track of their food consumption are more sociable.
- 3. Keep track of everything you eat, taste, or lick.
A typical mistake is underestimating how much food you’ve consumed, which might result in a weight loss stall or weight gain. However, keeping a meal journal (every bite, taste, or lick) can help you figure out where you’re going wrong. Take a look at these helpful hints for keeping a food diary:
Track the time of day you eat and how you feel to identify trigger times and emotions that lead to binge eating.
Recognize your eating triggers and seek out healthier meals to satisfy your hunger or better ways to cope with your emotions than with food.
Monitor your progress, keep track of your new habits, and reward yourself for all your hard work with a manicure or a movie.
- 4. Watch out for “Calorie Creep.”
Eating more than you expect is a common cause of weight loss plateaus. It’s easy for portion sizes to creep up on you, and before you know it, you’ve consumed more calories than your diet allows. That’s why it’s crucial to weigh and measure your food in order to determine suitable serving sizes. To break through the weight loss plateau, try lowering your daily calorie intake by 100 or 200 calories. Here’s how to do it:
- Consume a high-fiber breakfast to help limit the amount of food consumed at lunch.
- Instead of ordinary mayonnaise, use mustard or low-fat mayonnaise on your sandwich.
- Instead of cookies or chips, eat a piece of fresh fruit.
- Instead of ordinary soda, try diet soda.
- Sherbet or sorbet are better than super-premium ice cream.
- Instead of ordinary butter, use 2 tablespoons of light whipped butter or margarine.
- Instead of a cream sauce, top your favorite pasta with a red sauce.
- Instead of a whole candy bar, eat a snack-sized chocolate bar. Also, go for dark chocolate, which is good for your heart.
- Instead of high-fat meat toppings, choose vegetables for your pizza.
- Instead of a croissant or bagel, choose whole-grain bread for your sandwich.
- A single-slice open-faced sandwich is a good option.
- 5. Keep an eye out for overeating in restaurants
Even the most committed dieter can be swayed by rich foods and supersized amounts in restaurants. Consider eating out as an opportunity to learn portion control, especially if you eat out frequently.
Tallmadge claims that there is no law requiring you to order an entree every time you go out. Pay attention to your appetite and order a dinner salad or appetizer instead of a main course, or take half home in a doggie bag, Tallmadge advises.
- 6. To Control Hunger Pangs, Eat Low-Fat Protein
According to new research, a high-protein diet can help people feel less hungry. Ghrelin, a hormone generated by the stomach that promotes appetite (yep, it causes hunger! ), is suppressed by protein meals. Researchers discovered that high-fat diets actually enhanced ghrelin levels and increased hunger in a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Carbohydrates quickly made them considerably more hungry than they were before they ate. Protein diets, on the other hand, significantly reduced ghrelin levels, hence reducing hunger feelings.
The findings highlight plausible processes underlying the impact of high-protein/low-carb diets on weight loss and high-fat diets on weight gain, according to the researchers.
- 7. Eat a wider variety of fruits and vegetables
Consume plenty of fruits and vegetables. Eating a lot of low-calorie, high-volume fruits and vegetables keeps fat and calorie-dense meals out. Place the vegetables on top of the meat in the center of your dish. Barbara Rolls, PhD, creator of The Volumetrics Eating Plan, recommends starting lunch or dinner with a vegetable salad or a bowl of broth-based soup.
According to the US government’s dietary standards, people should consume 7-13 cups of produce every day. Make sure you have plenty of fresh fruits and veggies in your kitchen, and serve a few portions at each meal. You’ll increase your intake of beneficial vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and fiber as a result. You’ll also be less tempted to binge on highly processed foods if you fill up on low-calorie, nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables.
- 8. Use the Envelope to Break Through That Plateau
Getting into a routine of walking on the treadmill for 30 minutes every day or doing the neighborhood loop with your friends gets your body in shape. Your muscles become accustomed to the routine and become extremely efficient at doing the activity at hand after a period of time.
Variate your physical activities to keep your muscles guessing—and to get the biggest calorie burn. and push the limits to break through that stumbling block!
Include a few intervals at a faster speed or elevation (climb hills if you’re walking outside) during your 30-minute treadmill exercise, for example. Maintain this higher intensity for a few minutes before returning to your normal level of activity. Do it again and again after you’ve recovered. This will increase your calorie burn and help you break through the plateau.
Also, integrate strength-training exercises (such as weight lifting) into your program to help combat muscle loss caused by aging. Muscle mass is important for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight since it requires more calories to maintain than fat.
- 9. Use a pedometer to track your progress
Wearing a pedometer and setting a daily step target will help you become more active and burn more calories. Using a pedometer to track your steps can also help lower your blood pressure.
Set your pedometer to track your steps first thing in the morning. Then make an effort to be more active: walk while talking on the phone, take an extra walk with your dog, and march in place during commercials. To lose weight, aim for 10,000 steps per day. Each 2,000 step count burns about 100 calories more.
If you thrive on praise and feedback, invest in a talking pedometer, which rewards you by announcing the number of steps you’ve taken aloud (and loudly!).
- 10. If you want to avoid stress eating, try yoga
Stress eating is when you consume a lot of food (baked chocolate chip cookies, salty chips, a handful of this, a fistful of that) to relieve your inner emotional turmoil rather than to eat to eat. Yoga has been shown in studies to lower stress hormone levels and boost insulin sensitivity, which tells your body to burn food instead of storing it as fat.
Clients who wish to avoid stress eating should try the “child’s posture,” according to Britt Berg, MS, research manager and therapist at Emory University Medical School.
Begin by kneeling on your hands and knees on the floor, making sure your hands are under your shoulders and your knees are under your hips, with your toes touching. Lengthen your spine by stretching your neck forward and through the tailbone. As you continue to lengthen and stretch your spine, gently move your weight back toward your feet, enabling your hips to stretch further back.
Now, fully expand your arms by stretching them forward and walking your fingertips as far forward as they will go on the floor or rug. Extend your hips all the way back to your heels. You might be able to rest your hips on your heels and your forehead on the floor if you’re exceptionally flexible.
Berg suggests resting your brow on a mat or pillow to relax your mind. When you sense the desire to eat high-calorie snacks, do the “child’s pose.”