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5 reasons your weight loss diet is failing

Are you struggling to lose the weight you want, despite following what you believe to be a good weight loss diet?

Over the last 8 years I’ve worked with numerous people who before a closer look at their eating habits, couldn’t understand why they weren’t seeing the weight loss progress they wanted. This article shares a collection of the most common mistakes I tend to see when it comes to weight loss diets & where they go wrong.

(1) You yo-yo diet

If I asked you to tell me what your diet is like, you’re probably going to recount a fairly normal day for you. Perhaps cereal for breakfast, a sandwich & low calorie bar for lunch, a yogurt snack & a home cooked evening meal of meat/fish & some vegetables.

Now that might be completely true for 5 days out of every 7. But just because you eat like that 70% of the time, doesn’t mean that other 30% doesn’t count. If every week you ‘fall off the wagon’ & over a day or 2 eat a loaf of bread, an Indian take away, a tub of ice cream, a bar of dairy milk, a large Sunday roast & 2 bottles of wine that will impact your weight loss results.

The solution might not be to try & eat even less 5 days of the week, but maybe to eat a little more on those 5 days & eat a bit more sensibly on the other 2. Try to avoid the extreme restrict/binge pattern & aim to level things out.

(2) You set yourself up to fail

Different foods carry different value for all of us. You might not get as much pleasure & satisfaction from a snickers bar as I do. Therefore it’s less risky for you to have a cupboard full of snickers than it is for me.

If you’re trying to reduce your eating but still insist on having a range of your favourite, highly palatable & irresistible foods stocked in the kitchen, then you’re setting yourself up for failure. The more easily accessible something is to us, the more likely we will reach for it & the more pleasurable something is for us, the less likely we’ll be able to stop eating it once we’ve started.

Try to identify those ‘high risk’ foods for you & do not buy them into the house. If you want to incorporate them into your diet then perhaps try buying just one small serving of them each time you go shopping to help control your intake.

(3) You don’t measure out your portions

Foods are not created equal. A tablespoon of cooking oil contains over 10x more calories than a tbsp of yogurt.

Certain foods, particularly those high in fat, contain way more calories than you perhaps realise. Therefore even servings you might consider sensible could be pushing you over your daily target & stopping your weight loss.

Try weighing out high fat foods like oils, cheese, butter & nuts/seeds- it might surprise you just how big your current servings are.

(4) You forget the little things

Something I do very regularly is review my clients food diaries. Often I’m surprised at how dry & basic their meals appear to be.

“Chicken breast, salad leaves”

Upon questioning it becomes apparent they’ve forgotten to add in the mayonnaise, the parmesan & the small piece of crusty bread with butter that they had with it.

Remember that almost everything you eat & drink (besides water) has a calorie value & will therefore contribute towards your daily intake. You might not think that little bit of ketchup you had on your breakfast matters, but I guarantee thats not the only thing you’re forgetting to log.

(5) You think just eating healthily is enough

Everyones definition of healthy is different.

Is the healthiness of a food determined by how many calories it contains? In which case is Diet Coke healthier than an avocado?

Or is the sign of a healthy food, one thats fresh & unprocessed? In which case, do frozen & canned fruits & vegetables count as unhealthy?

By whatever measure you think of a food as healthy, it’s still perfectly possible to gain weight eating a diet of only ‘healthy foods’.

An inescapable rule that all weight loss diets must follow is that you must eat less than your body burns. It’s essential you control the quantity of what you eat- as well as the quality.

Remember that improving your diet is not a 1 step process. It’s likely it will require lots of small changes until you feel you’ve struck the right balance between seeing the weight loss results you want & still enjoying the foods you’re eating.

So change things up & don’t worry if it doesn’t work right away- make a change, evaluate how successful it was & repeat. You’ll get there!

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