Hi Friends. After battling my own diet issues, and now helping others with weight loss and nutrition journeys I have learned despite our differences, we are all the same. I have seen and heard countless people who say they cannot shake those extra pounds no matter what they do. In rare cases there really is a medical issue or hormonal imbalance that needs to be addressed but more often they fit into one or more of these categories below.
You don’t need to lose weight– Do you feel great in your clothes, have boundless energy and eat a clean diet? Have you done cleanses and stayed the same weight? Do you drink a lot of water and go to the bathroom regularly? Do you like how you look but maybe society has convinced you that you should be a smaller size? Great! You are perfect just as you are. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. I wanted to address this first because body weight and shape is a very personal thing and should be addressed with compassion. Everyone is shaped differently and that’s what makes us the uniquely beautiful creatures that we are. Rock those hot bodies and don’t change a thing! Keep reading if excess pounds are bringing you down.
You don’t eat enough– I know I know how could this be possible? This was me for many years. I bounced from restriction diet to juice cleanse to hours of Tracy Anderson’s dance cardio and it got me nowhere but yo-yo’ing between sizes, hormonal disaster and deep levels of frustration. Oddly enough, it also got me more fat on my abdomen than I knew I should have. It turns out abs really are made in the kitchen and for really great ones it is necessary to keep your fat burning furnace burning all day by feeding yourself small meals every 2.5-3 hours. Who knew?
You are an emotional eater– Emotional eaters turn to food to soothe themselves when they want to check out of the situation they are in. Often times this happens when an uncomfortable feeling from the past( usually early childhood) is triggered by a modern day event and it is so painful they will do anything to take the feeling away. Often times people have no idea they are emotional eaters or that they are even in pain. There are many ways to work on emotional eating like twelve step programs, cognitive behavioral therapy and other methods but I have found it is often a powerful jump start to do a two day cleanse and abstain from food completely. I have one I recommend for people so please contact me directly if you would like more information. By abstaining from food completely you give yourself a chance to sit with those uncomfortable feelings and think where they may be stemming from. Once you find out why you have the urge to go eat when you really just feel sad or anxious, you can take steps to form new and positive habits to deal with these feelings.
You are toxic– sadly, the world we live in is a toxic place. Our food, air, water and environment is full of toxic chemicals, gasses, gmo’s etc. When these enter our body, our liver doesn’t know what to do with them so they get stored as fat. When people really and truly are eating well and exercising and not able to get rid of the last ten or fifteen pounds often times toxic build up is the culprit. Again, the best way to address this is with a short aloe vera based cleanse to flush the system and cleanse the body on a cellular level. When finished the body is cleansed of any junk and more able to absorb the nutrition it will receive moving forward.
You only do cardio– I was guilty of this at one point in my life also. I spent hours and hours on cardio machines only to see no physical changes and I was starving after! Long hours of cardio combined with low calorie diets are an even worse recipe for metabolic disaster because you burn lean muscle in the process which is not friendly to your body over time. Strength training in combination with moderate cardio and small clean meals every 3 hours is your best bet to keep your metabolism humming and body looking lean and toned.
You don’t eat enough protein– Everybody’s bodies have different dietary requirements. Not everyone is meant to be eating high amounts of protein but more than any other change in diet I see, adding extra protein helps people get off a weight loss plateau. Extra protein fires up the metabolism, satiates people longer and keeps them from eating excess sugar which is another reason people have a hard time losing weight. You don’t have to be a caveman to do it and vegan protein options are just fine too!
Fruit and nut butters are your best friends, along with Paleo baked goods– Okay, maybe they look like your friends but if you are one of those people who cannot control yourself when you know the almond butter is smiling at you in the refrigerator it may be a better idea not to buy it at all. The same goes for almond and coconut flour baked goods and a diet high in fruit. I work with many people that follow the Paleo diet and when they are still having trouble losing weight it is almost always because of fruit, nut butter and baked goods. Fruit is definitely beneficial and full of some good stuff but forego fruit until you have reached your weight loss goal and you will get there faster. If you want to keep some fruit leave in berries. It’s not forever.
You snack– unhealthy or out of control snacking happens mostly when we are not eating enough at meal time or failed to plan our day. Be proactive and start prepping five small meals a day and always have one on hand. If that is too time consuming, replace two of those meals with a high quality protein shake. That is what works for me. I’ve also found it helpful to make it a rule not to eat in the car. When I was pregnant I got into a terrible habit of keeping snacks in my car and munching wherever I went. When I really did not need the extra calories after I had my son this was a very tough habit to break. Make it a point to sit down and be present and grateful for your meals. Breathe, chew. Savor every bite. Don’t be one of those people driving down the 10 stuffing food in your face. It’s dangerous for your waistline and other drivers.
With some careful consideration, brutal honesty, a food diary and a third party taking a look at your lifestyle it is almost always possible to pinpoint the real issue that’s keeping you from your body goals. Enlist a trusted friend or contact me about a free consultation if you need support.
Top photo by Milada Vigerova
Bottom photo by Julia Caesar