Why Diets May Not Work for You

dieting-doesnt workHave you ever started a diet and gotten extremely frustrated because it didn’t seem to be working?  Maybe you lost a few pounds at the beginning but then stalled, or maybe you seemed to run into a brick wall right from the start.

Why does this happen?  There are several possible reasons, and below are three of the most common:

Hidden food culprits

When it comes to weight loss, there are a lot of hidden “pitfalls” that you can easily slip into without realizing it.  For example, you may be taking in extra calories from coffee with cream and sugar, or salad dressing that is high in fat or sugar, or consuming too much sodium which makes you retain water.

If you think the problem might be in some of your food or beverage choices, take a close look at everything you eat and drink on a typical day, then calculate how many calories, fat, carbohydrates and sodium they contain.  If everything checks out there:

You may be dehydrated

Are you drinking enough water?  A minimum recommendation is usually 64 ounces of water daily, but you’ll need more if you are overweight or work out intensely, or if you live in a hot, dry climate.  When you don’t drink enough water, your body holds onto the water it has!  That’s a basic survival mechanism that can be easily overcome by simply ingesting more water.  When you drink plenty of water, your body has no problem letting go of excess that is stored for survival reasons.  (Note that a high sodium intake will still make you retain water despite drinking plenty of water.)

You may not really want to lose weight

No one wants to believe that their thoughts could have so much control over their body, but subconscious fears and beliefs can be incredibly powerful.  Here’s how to tell if this might be happening to you: when you think about being thin, about finally reaching your weight loss goal, how does it make you feel?  Of course you probably feel excited and eager to get there – but do you also feel a twinge of fear or discomfort about being thin?

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