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What is hindering your weight loss goals?

So you have been working really hard at losing weight, you have your exercise and nutrition dialed in but you are still not having success. Sound familiar? Well, for many people this is true- and beyond frustrating! There is a little more to weight loss than simply calories in and calories out.

I thought I might walk through some of the habits that may be thwarting your honest attempts to budge the scale:

1. You aren’t getting enough protein.

Start your day with a protein rich breakfast to make sure you are getting it in. If you usually reach for cereal or toast consider adding eggs, nuts, yogurt, beans, poultry or fish to increase protein in your morning meal. You might find you are less hungry for your mid-morning snack or part of the starchy portion of the meal when you focus on getting protein first thing. Set a goal to get in 20-35 grams of protein per meal.

2. You are not getting enough sleeping

I love intuitive eating and listening to your body to feed it appropriately but when you lack sleep your appetite regulating hormones get all out of wack. Certain hormones spike and you are more hungry and you have less of the appetite regulating hormones so your fullness cues are off too. It is a recipe for disaster! When you lose sleep the foods you crave change as well making more high calorie indulgent options more desired. Create a sleep routine-and stick to it. Stay consistent and find a time that works for your body to go to bed at a regular time and get up at the same time every day.

3. You are exercising too much

Research supports exercise has huge benefits for lowering many health risks as well as improving mood, making you feel stronger and more energetic. Health benefits are found between 15-60 minutes of exercise per day so unless you are a competitive athlete avoid going over an hour.

4. You are stressed out

Stress is a fact of life and expected. However, when it is persistent your body will respond by pumping excess cortisol (hormone) which can lead to an increase in appetite and eating overall. It also influences what foods you crave-think comfort food.

Research also suggests that when you are actively trying to lose weight by restricting what you eat it ups your cortisol levels which is counterproductive. A few good ways to lower cortisol levels are exercise, meditation and hugs (with people in your house? Maybe pets too!) when lowering your stress levels are beyond your control.

5. You are not listening to your body

Your body is telling you it is hungry and you aren’t listening. Your body is telling you you’ve had enough to eat and you keep eating. When you practice listening to your body you can respond more appropriately instead of putting off hunger or eating when you are bored. This is totally my area so reach out if you need more encouragement or have questions about this one!

6. Your portion sizes need work

Even when foods are very nutritious they still have calories. Some common culprits are avocados, nuts and nut butters, legume pastas and healthy bread.

A thoughtless way to help you fill up on proper portions is to reverse the ratio of grains to vegetables on your plate. Always start with twice the vegetables to your grains or pasta and this will help to keep your plate full of food too.

7. You are consuming too many processed foods

Scientifically speaking, the more processed a food the more likely you are to eat it faster. This ability to eat quickly can lead to more calories consumed before you realize you are full or satisfied. Think of how quick you can gobble that granola bar compared to munching on an apple.

There are many factors when it comes to weight loss and many specifically for your personal lifestyle. Hopefully some of these resonated with you!

(Adapted from

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