• Remana Jamal

Why Do Weight Loss Plateaus Happen?

How many people dropped weight following a weight loss diet, where they unexpectedly stopped losing any further weight. This is called a “plateau” of weight loss, where their weight remains the same through improvements in diet and exercise. Don’t worry you’re not alone; there’re several different approaches to take to overcome this phase.

· But first let's see what causes the weight loss plateau:

A quick drop in weight is common within the first few weeks of following a weight loss program. You will lose some muscles along with fats during your weight loss journey. Muscle serves to keep the metabolic rate at a high level. So when you lose some muscles, your metabolism continues to decrease, leading you to burn fewer calories than you did when you started your weight loss program, even if you continue to eat the same amount of calories.

One possible explanation for weight loss plateau is under-active thyroid “hypothyroidism”, which reduces the rate of metabolism. Hypothyroidism also leads to water and salt retention.

· What are the solutions?

Exercise: Resistance training stimulates muscle mass preservation, which is a key factor affecting how many calories you are burning during training and at rest. If you're already working out, workout an additional 1–2 days a week or increase your workout intensity can greatly increase your metabolism.

Protein: Digestion of proteins increases calorie burning by 20-30%. Proteins tend to increase the hormone responsible for appetite, which makes you feel full longer. Since muscle loss is one reason for weight loss plateau; protein intake can help stops muscle loss.

Stress management: Cortisol is a stress hormone, which can interfere with weight loss due to its effect on storing belly fats. Try yoga, meditation, brisk walking, and breathing exercises to overcome stress.

Increase fiber: Fiber stimulates weight loss by increasing food travel in your digestive tract, suppressing appetite and reducing the amount of calories that your body absorbs from food.

Sleep well: Inadequate sleep can restrict weight loss by lowering your rate of metabolism and changing your levels of hormones to encourage hunger, cravings and fat storage.

It can be frustrating to reach a weight loss plateau but a person can also change their diet or exercise program to overcome this plateau overtime. Having sufficient sleep and managing stress can indeed help people get over weight loss plateau. It’s only a matter of time if you do the right thing you’ll definitely see good results, just be patient.


WebMD. 2020. Weight Loss: Plateau No More.

Medicalnewstoday.com. 2020. Weight Loss Plateau: Why They Happen And What To Do.

Mayo Clinic. 2020. Weight Loss Stalled? Move Past The Plateau.

Healthline. 2020. 14 Simple Ways To Break Through A Weight Loss Plateau.

American Thyroid Association. 2020. Thyroid And Weight | American Thyroid Association.

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