Doing everything you could to melt away that unhealthy belly fat, yet nothing seems to work? Chances are one of these five reasons could be why you’re not losing weight.

5 common diet and lifestyle mistakes you should avoid to lose weight and belly fat

5 common diet and lifestyle mistakes you should avoid to lose weight and belly fat  |  Photo Credit: Thinkstock

New Delhi: One common mistake many people trying to lose weight make is following an inappropriate diet and exercise. Making poor food choices or doing wrong in the gym can prevent weight loss or even make you pile on the pounds. That being said, there are a number of things that can interfere with your efforts to slim down besides diet and exercise, and stress is one such factor that contributes to a bigger waistline.

Indeed, it can be frustrating when you are not seeing the desired results even after swapping all your favourite junk foods for fresh fruits and veggies or going to the gym every other day. If you’ve been doing everything you could to melt away that unhealthy belly fat, yet nothing seems to be working, chances are one of these five reasons could be why you’re not losing weight.

Eating unhealthy foods

Combining exercise with a balanced diet is the best way to shed the pounds. Research has shown that exercise alone may not help you lose weight without addressing the diet. In fact, your diet accounts for at least 80 per cent of your battle. While a calorie-restricted diet has been found to aid weight loss, sticking to all natural, whole foods, is a good rule of thumb.

Low-protein diet

Another reason could be you’re not getting enough protein from your diet. Eating high-protein foods, especially in breakfast, may promote faster weight loss by boosting your metabolism and decreasing your calorie intake. Studies show that people who eat a high-protein breakfast are more likely to feel satisfied longer than those who eat the same amount of protein at other meals. They also have fewer cravings throughout the day.

Following a fad diet

The problem is that most fad diets that claim to promote rapid weight loss are based on testimonials rather than scientific evidence. In most cases, the diet is highly restrictive and can cause serious health problems. Not only they can be hard to maintain but also promote unhealthy eating habits and don’t meet nutritional requirements. Moreover, you’re more likely to regain any weight lost shortly after stopping the diet. The key is to eat a healthy, balanced diet and avoid placing extreme restrictions on any major food groups. But try to eliminate or cut back on sugar and unhealthy fats, particularly trans fats.

Not enough exercise

Engaging in regular physical activity, including different types of exercise, can help you lose weight besides eating a healthy diet. It is claimed that a combination of aerobic and anaerobic exercise can give you better results from your work out routine. While aerobic exercises – such as cycling, jogging – can have a direct effect on weight loss by increasing overall calorie burn, anaerobic exercises – such as heavy weight training or sprinting – can help your body convert fat into lean muscle.

Poor sleep

You already know the consequences of insufficient sleep – bad moods, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, etc. Lack of sleep may also shorten your life expectancy. Studies show that not getting enough shut-eye can disrupt the body’s ability to regulate hunger, which means you’re more likely to overeat and make unhealthy food choices. A study from UC Berkeley that examined the brain regions that control food choices showed that sleep deprivation can make you crave for junk food more than healthy food, indicating the link between poor sleep and obesity. This shows that getting enough sleep every night can help you lose weight and maintain a healthy body and mind. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that adults aged 18-65 should get 7-9 hours of sleep per night.

Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purpose only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.

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