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5 causes of weight gain that have nothing to do with calories or exercise

I’m really sick of seeing weight loss experts reporting weight loss is simply

LESS CALORIES

MORE EXERCISE

I actually find it personally offensive because it perpetuates the entire toxic diet culture.

This is setting people up for complete disappointment, not to mention feeling like shit whilst you are starving yourself and running yourself into the ground with exercise!

Yes for some, it really can come down to over-eating or not moving their body enough, but for so many of you - you do these things... and you lose ZERO weight. And you're like huh?! I thought I needed to just eat less and exercise more. Why aren't I losing weight?

Losing weight can be MUCH more complex with lots of things to consider; and we must remember to have compassion for our bodies as we are all biochemically different. And our metabolism and body composition also reflects this.



Insulin

insulin resistance will cause you to store body fat no matter how well you eat, and you'll feel hungry with no "off" switch.

insulin resistance is, in fact, very common. And could be affecting you even if your doctor said your blood sugar is normal. There can be a strong hormonal component to abdominal weight gain. And in most people, that hormone is insulin. Growing evidence suggests that insulin resistance is not caused by weight gain but the other way around. In other words, weight gain, specifically abdominal or visceral weight gain, is caused by insulin resistance.

As insulin sensitivity improves, and insulin comes down, metabolic function is restored and weight loss can occur.

Stress

Excessive levels of cortisol can increase the risk of a number of health issues including weight gain. A long-term overactive stress response will communicate to the body to store fat for safety as it prepares for the impending ‘danger'. Because stress equates to potential serious danger. Your body doesn't know it's not a bear chasing you. Cortisol suppresses thyroid function, meaning you will burn through your calories much more slowly and have a slow metabolism as a result, leading to weight gain.

Thyroid function

As above - a sluggish thyroid will cause your metabolism and ability to burn calories normally to be significantly affected. Your metabolism will be so slow, you can't eat or exercise your way out of this one. You could eat absolutely perfectly, and it will make no difference unless the thyroid condition is rectified.

Gut bacteria

The bugs that live in your gut play a huge role in influencing what we eat and in how what we eat is used in the body.

Several studies in animals, and some in humans, say that it is. For example, scientists transferred bacteria from the guts of two strains of mice — one that naturally becomes obese and one that naturally stays lean — into a third lean strain raised from birth to have no gut bacteria. Gut bacteria transferred from the naturally obese mice made the germ-free mice become fat, but gut bacteria transferred from the naturally lean mice kept them lean.

Then scientists took bacteria from the guts of human identical twins, one of whom was obese and one of whom was lean, and transferred those bacteria into the guts of lean, germ-free mice. Bacteria from the obese twin made the mice become fat, but bacteria from the lean twin did not.

Hormones

play a role in retaining fluid, and feeling like you gain weight based on your hormonal cycle . An imbalance between progesterone and oestrogen can be a driver for this. And in turn, adipose cells (or fat cells) will meddle with your oestrogen, just perpetuating more issues. Certain contraceptives are can also be associated with weight gain too.

Without healthy levels of progesterone, estrogen is either left unchecked or levels are high in comparison and may cause symptoms of weight gain, PMS, sore breasts and so on.

In a few weeks, I have a podcast episode dedicated entirely to this topic of weight loss - and it's a good one so make sure you are subscribed by hitting the link here xx