Okay, so you have reached your goal weight and feel absolutely great about hitting the target, and love the new lighter version of yourself. Now, if you show slack and be complacent, chances are high that you might regain all the lost weight back. Certain studies have found that 80% of the people who have lost a considerable amount of weight, tend to regain all of that back within two years. It’s a fact that your body doesn’t like to lose its fat storage and will do everything to gain back those layers that have been shredded through weight loss. Now, here’s another interesting fact – a fat cell is never burnt up – it just shrinks in size when the fat content is pushed away from it, and once there’s enough surplus calories available in the body, it balloons up to accommodate fat, sometimes up to 20x of its original size. Also, once full expansion is reached, the fat cell divides to create new fat cells. And more the number of fat cells, the higher is the chance of putting all the weight back again, because they can all expand to accommodate more and more fat molecules. If you think losing weight is tough, maintaining a healthy weight is tougher. So, if you are someone who is seeing an upward swing on the scale, here are some reasons why you are regaining weight after losing it.
1. A Complacent Attitude: A majority of people who reach their goal weight after putting in a lot of effort and hard work, actually become complacent after hitting the target. That means they tend to get a little slack and take liberty with their dieting and exercise pattern. Ideally, one should not slip on their diet or activity levels even after weight loss has happened.
2. Impaired Leptin Levels: During the dieting process, the satiety hormone “leptin” drops to two-thirds and can remain suppressed to a considerable degree even after the dieting has concluded. If the leptin levels are still low, it will make you more hungrier. Up your intake of soluble fiber and increase physical activity to fight leptin resistance.
3. Chronic Inflammation: When someone leads an extremely stressful life, eats processed food, sleeps only for a short period of time, a protein called as C-reactive protein (which is an inflammatory marker present in the blood), shoots up, making the pH of the blood acidic. Metabolic changes and hormonal factors raise CRP levels and push the body into inflammation status. One of the major contributors to inflammation in the body is your diet, the food you consume. As mentioned above, the other dynamics that play a part to cause inflammation are lack of sleep, high stress, lack of physical activity, etc. Other lesser known agents can cause chronic inflammation – pesticides, pollution, phthalates, free radicals, smoking, vitamin D deficiency, vitamin B6 and B12 deficiency, etc. All of these factors post the dieting phase can increase inflammation which can directly impair the secretion of leptin which leads people who have lost weight to eat more food and gain weight back.
4. Low Metabolism: Once the body has lost considerable weight, it lowers down metabolism and adapts to the low energy expenditure. At this point, one must cut calories further and increase exercise to maintain the weight loss. And we have to admit, it’s a lot of hard work.
5. Obsession with Food: When someone has lost weight through crash dieting, the deprivation and restriction leads to obsession with food. It’s hard to explain, but food becomes an obsession and so does binge eating, leading to weight gain.
6. You lost weight through a Fad Diet: Fad diets are hardly sustainable because they are based on food deprivation, starvation, and cutting out entire food groups. You might have lost a lot of weight through such diets, but sustaining them after a while becomes difficult, and weight gain is almost unavoidable. Weight loss diets such as on the Rati Beauty app focus entirely on healthy eating and making lifestyle changes so that your weight loss is permanent, and you would not end up gaining all the lost weight.
7. Not Making Healthy Dieting and Exercise Part of Lifestyle: Regular exercise and healthy eating habits should be a part of lifestyle, not means to a reach a particular goal, so that one is able to maintain a healthy weight.
8. Don’t Let Guards Down During Weekends: Often cheat meals get extended into cheat days and binge eating becomes a habit during weekends. Saturday and Sunday can ruin months of hard work, so it’s important to practice mindful eating on weekends too.
9. All Calories are not Created Equal: 500 calories of French fries and cupcakes isn’t equal to 500 calories of vegetables, fruits, and healthy fats. Choose what you eat carefully and practice mindful eating.
10. You have fallen back to your pre-weight loss Lifestyle: Have you started to take a liking for diet soda and soft drinks back again? Not a good for overall health, eliminate unhealthy food completely from your life.
11. Not Getting Enough Sleep: Getting the mandatory 7 hours of sleep every night is important to keep the stress hormone cortisol (an appetite-stimulating hormone) in check and all fat-burning hormones in balance.
12. You can’t pinpoint what’s causing weight gain: Sometimes, it becomes extremely difficult to pinpoint the reason behind rapid weight gain, in such a case, this list might be helpful.