Weight loss is hard. Even when you do all the right things, like eating healthy, calorie-controlled portions and diligently making time for the gym day in and day out, actually seeing results isn't as easy as it sounds. The hours of sweat on the treadmill, the early-morning runs before the kids get up for school, and the lunches of endless salads may result in a little toning, but at the end of your day, you're the same unhappy weight you've always been.
Sound familiar? If so, you're not alone. In fact, millions of Americans are facing the same struggles, putting hours and hours every week into the weight loss process without even the smallest movement of the needle on the scale. Working so hard for virtually no upsides can be deeply frustrating, especially for those facing health consequences related to excess weight.
If you're tired of making all the right choices to no avail, there may be light at the end of the tunnel. As current research indicates, there are actual medical reasons behind the phenomenon known as weight loss resistance.
As the name implies, weight loss resistance is an inability to normally lose weight. Despite a calorie deficit and regular exercise, the body, for what could be a myriad of reasons, is unable to properly complete the equation. Originally considered an excuse by many medical professionals – those who can't lose weight are obviously just doing something wrong – medical research is now indicating that weight loss resistance is indeed a real condition. Today, many expert medical professionals, including doctor bloggers Sara Gottfried, MD and David L. Katz, MD stand behind these ascertations: weight loss resistance isn't a hoax or a coincidence.
Let's dive straight into its cause. Have you ever heard of the hypothalamus? It's a small part of the brain which, among other crucial functions, controls our metabolic duties. When working well, it releases and inhibits several hormones responsible for a harmonic and balanced metabolism. However, like all parts of our bodies, it can also malfunction.
If it gets inflamed due to the presence of some harmful bacteria in your brain, it will send wrong signals to your body - like telling you to eat more than you should. Unfortunately, it's much more common than we would like - especially in overweight people.
However, understanding the reality of weight loss resistance and identifying the underlying causes aren't exactly equal. Here are five serious signs of weight loss resistance you need to know to put your body back on the right track.
You wake up and you're tired. You go to work and you're tired. You eat lunch and you're tired. You go home and you're tired. Sound familiar?
Fatigue is a huge part of life for millions of Americans. In fact, one in three adults doesn't get enough sleep. However, whether you realize it or not, fatigue could be a sign that you're weight loss resistant.
For some sufferers, fatigue is caused by a lack of sleep, which plays a big role in weight loss resistance. A lack of sleep leads to an increased likelihood of weight gain regardless of diet and exercise, affecting both metabolism and release of hormones. However, fatigue can be unrelated to personal habits; other conditions that affect ease of weight loss, like thyroid challenges, can contribute to sensations like exhaustion.
A little stress is normal from time to time, but if you feel more stressed than normal, that may be a sign of weight loss resistance. The effects of ongoing stress can negatively affect your body, causing an inability to lose weight. In turn, you become stressed and anxious about your weight loss struggles, creating a chain reaction.
Stress as a biological phenomenon is a part of the "fight-or-flight" reaction within the body. In times of great pressure, the body adapts by releasing cortisol, a hormone that can affect metabolism, blood sugar, and motivation on a short-term basis. However, cortisol is not supposed to be a part of everyday life. Heightened levels can break down muscle and store fat: a defense mechanism intended to help the body increase energy stores in times of trouble. One study even found links between stress hormones and the development of fat deposits.
The ability to focus appropriately on tasks is an important part of life. From projects at work to jobs at home, your ability to pay attention can be critical to earning an income or maintaining good relationships.
If you're having trouble focusing, it could mean that you're stressed or overwhelmed, but there could also be other issues at play, including weight loss resistance. When you're not thinking clearly, you're unlikely to put appropriate time and energy into achieving your weight loss goals. Further, conditions that may affect the ability to focus can also contribute to metabolic challenges, like hormonal shifts within the body that may cause weight gain.
Everyone has an upset stomach every now and then, particularly during periods of high stress or illness. However, cramping, bloating, gas, and diarrhea should rarely be a part of your life.
If you find yourself dashing to the bathroom a few times a day, your inability to lose weight may be related. Imbalances in the gut can be a contributing factor to many common ailments, including success – or lack thereof – in weight loss.
Stomach problems can frequently be caused by unbalanced gut flora; recent research has determined that the bacteria growing naturally in your stomach can strongly influence ability to sustain a healthy weight. One study, for example, found that presence of the bacteria Christensenellaceae is positively correlated with weight loss, while less can be equated with weight gain.
If you're holding to a known calorie deficit and exercising regularly, preferably a combination of strength and cardio, and still aren't seeing results, the answer is clear: weight loss resistance.
With so many factors contributing to an inability to lose weight, like insulin resistance or thyroid sensitivity, it's very possible to be weight loss resistant without seeing a single other symptom. When you're sure you're doing everything right, the problem isn't your poor habits – it's something deeper.
With support from leading doctors and researchers around the world, the reality of weight loss resistance is undeniable. As the above evidence indicates, affected individuals may be struggling to lose weight for a number of reasons, from lack of sleep to a poor diet high in carbohydrates.
When you feel as if you're only making positive choices, a lack of progress can be deeply distressing. No matter how long you spend on the elliptical or stair climber, the weight just isn't coming off. If you want to overcome weight loss resistance and see changes in your body, you need to consider an anti-inflammatory and probiotic weight loss supplement that targets the root cause.
We at Better Body Co. have formulated a 3-strain probiotics for weight loss called Provitalize. Our Provitalize users have reported to lose as much as 5 pounds within a week, even without any major change in their diet or lifestyle.