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Gaining Weight? Here Are 9 Hidden Factors That Could Be the Culprit

Weight loss
Jan Trobisch

Jan Trobisch

Your body operates with a delicate balance of chemicals — specifically hormones, neurotransmitters and a few weird chemicals that still baffle scientists. When you put yourself on a diet, you risk disrupting that chemical balance, which in turn negates any effect your diet might have had. In addition, genetic material passed down by your great-great-great-great ancestors remains highly influential when it comes to how much you weigh, your metabolism rate and why your body either hates or tolerates dieting.

Still, why are you gaining weight even though you’re dieting? While the above culprits play a factor in your ability to lose weight, there might be others working against you as well.

Eight Reasons You May Not Be Losing Weight

There might be a reason you’re not losing weight despite all your best efforts to diet and exercise. Let’s take a look at these eight weight loss spoilers:

1. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (Stein-Leventhal Syndrome)

Polycystic ovary syndrome arises from an imbalance of progesterone, estrogen and androgens (male hormones) in women. That imbalance causes you to experience symptoms such as absent periods, voice changes, increased hair growth all over the body except the head, diabetes, high blood pressure — and, of course, weight gain.

2. Thyroid Disease

An underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) will inhibit weight loss even if you are dieting and exercising. As the main regulator of metabolism, the thyroid malfunctions for a number of reasons, including overconsumption of soy products, genetic predisposition, diagnosis of fibromyalgia, smoking and comorbidity with an endocrine or pituitary disease.

3. Change in Resting Metabolic Rate

If you have been dieting long enough to lose at least 20 pounds but have suddenly stopped losing weight, it might be because your resting metabolic rate, or RMR, has changed. RMR is the amount of energy needed to remain alive while sedentary. Several variables contribute to determining RMR, such as amount of muscle mass, age, genetics and environment — cold or hot climate. Also be aware that eating small meals throughout the day increases RMR while crash dieting will lower your RMR. At Synergy Wellness we are able to determine your RMR with a simple 15-minute test.

4. Genes

Genes are what provide your body with its natural ability to control appetite and sense when it’s full. Genes can also make you highly sensitive to the smell, sight and taste of food and cause you to be unconsciously drawn to high-calorie sustenance. In addition, genes may even make some people less inclined to participate in physical activity — obviously not a good thing if you’re eating high-calorie foods.

In short, this means your genetic makeup can contribute to your ability to gain or lose weight.

5. Stress

Believe it or not, the stress of dieting and constantly worrying about food intake can cause weight gain. Cortisol and adrenaline flood your body whenever you experience stress, boosting your energy and vigilance level, but also squeezing protein-based glucose out of your pancreas. Unfortunately, glucose is readily converted into fat that is easily stockpiled in the hips, buttocks and thighs.

6. Hormone Imbalance

Hormones control how much you eat by telling your brain to signal the stomach when it thinks your body needs energy, or when it has had enough. Alpha-MSH, leptin, neuropeptide Y, ghrelin and anandamide are all hormones involved in appetite stimulation. When hormone levels fluctuate, so does your weight.

7. Not Getting Enough Sleep

Daytime fatigue forces your body to seek instant energy, especially in foods containing sugar, sugar and more sugar. This is obviously not conducive to weight loss.

8. Skipping a Healthy Breakfast

Eating a good, protein-rich breakfast jumpstarts your metabolism and keeps it running top speed all day. A revved up metabolism will help you burn more calories.

Weight gain in females isn’t just about a lack of dieting prowess or not exercising regularly. There may be other reasons for weight gain that are sabotaging your efforts.

No matter what, however, getting fit and losing weight is a comprehensive lifestyle change that includes eating healthy foods, exercising and integrating a positive, dynamic awareness of the mind/body connection into all aspects of your life. Call Synergy Wellness today at 661-878-9100 to schedule an appointment.