Nothing is more frustrating than trying to lose weight and seeing no results. If all that exercise and diet aren’t getting you anywhere, you would think you’re doing them wrong. But that’s not necessarily the case.
Maybe you’re already losing weight; you don’t notice it because of the slow pace. But if the scale shows otherwise, the problem might not be on your diet and exercise. You could be suffering from an undiagnosed health condition.
There’s no need to fear; health conditions that affect your weight aren’t life-threatening. But they do impact the quality of your life. So without further ado, let’s identify those conditions and see what you can do for your weight-loss journey.
1. Lack of Sleep or Insomnia
Occasional lack of sleep won’t increase your weight immediately. Habitual sleep deprivation would. Studies show that poor sleep is one of the biggest risk factors for obesity. It can also hinder your weight loss progress. If you can’t control the quality of your sleep, you’re probably dealing with insomnia already.
Insomnia affects hormone production, making your body release excessive cortisol, a stress hormone. It also spikes your insulin levels, making you crave fatty and sugar foods more often.
To combat insomnia, consult a doctor, and adopt a healthier nighttime routine. Use sleep aids like an eye mask, aromatherapy, or meditation music. Try to clear your mind every night so that you’d enjoy a restful, uninterrupted sleep.
Like insomnia, depression also increases your cortisol levels. It causes excessive fat to gather in your belly. Speed up your weight loss progress by consulting your therapist about a healthy routine. Quit the habits that trigger your symptoms, and remember to go easy on yourself. Dealing with weight problems while depressed can make the journey twice as hard. Try to focus on your mental well-being rather than your physical body. If your mind gets the nourishment it needs, your body will reflect its good effects.
3. Drinking Problems
Drinking often may sound fun and essential in your self-care routine, but it’s the complete opposite. Sure, a glass of wine a night is healthy, but purposefully getting drunk isn’t. If you struggle to control your drinking impulses, you could be crossing the line to alcoholism.
Beer, wine, and other alcoholic beverages are loaded with calories. Alcohol itself has seven calories per gram. If you finish more than one bottle in one sitting, you’re giving your body hundreds of more calories than it needs.
Not only that, but alcohol also affects your sleep and is linked to depression. If your drinking habits are still under your control, scale them back now. If you’ve become dependent, seek help as soon as possible.
4. Low Thyroid
Low thyroid is a result of hypothyroidism. This autoimmune disorder hinders all weight loss progress and even increases your weight despite the extreme measures you’ve taken.
In this case, the only way to see results is to seek medical treatment for thyroid problems. Taking levothyroxine daily can kickstart your thyroid production along with your metabolism. Once you’ve reached the right dose, your weight should stabilize and shed off pounds normally. But consult your doctor before taking any medication.
5. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS is the most common hormonal disorder in women of childbearing age. If you have PCOS, you tend to be insulin-resistant, making you susceptible to obesity. Insulin resistance leads to excessive glucose buildup in your bloodstream, explaining your uncontrollable weight gain.
As with depression, PCOS gathers most body fat in your belly. That’s the most dangerous place to store fat. Sadly, belly fat is also the hardest to burn. But a few lifestyle changes can speed up its elimination.
Do more cardio in your workout routines, but don’t abandon strength training. Building your muscle mass encourages fat to burn faster. In addition, reduce carbohydrates in your diet, swapping them for high-fiber foods. Consult your doctor as often as needed as well.
6. Cushing’s Disease
If most of your body fat gathers in your belly and the base of your neck, observe if you also bruise easier and if your limbs seem weaker than normal. Those are signs of Cushing’s Disease, a hormonal disorder that causes excessive cortisol production. Cushing’s disease might also explain your rounded face and big, purple stretch marks.
However, avoid self-diagnosing. Consider that you have the disease. To confirm your hunches, consult a doctor. They will find out the cause of your condition and treat it with surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or drugs.
Living with any of these conditions isn’t easy, and not just because they cause weight gain. They can also affect your self-confidence and self-esteem. So don’t ignore the symptoms; visit a doctor as soon as you can, and finally see your workouts and diets pay off.