It’s almost the definition of something not making sense: having to eat more to lose more weight.
But there’s a good chance that if you’re dieting and you’ve hit a plateau, that could be your problem.
It hardly seems fair, but research shows that when your weight loss focus is on cutting the amount of food you’re eating, your body may resist your efforts. It cuts its own metabolic activity because it thinks that it’s starving.
Your body relies on food to survive.
What you eat is much more than just something that makes you gain weight.Tweet
Just like you need to give yourself fuel to power your exercise session, you need fuel to digest and process your food.
When you cut back on the fuel you give your body, it turns to fat for energy. That’s a good thing.
But if you cut back on food too much, your body has no choice but to break down lean muscle to keep going.
When that happens it’s like an alarm goes off inside of you: all the internal operations slow down to cut down on how much fuel is needed. That’s when you stop losing weight.
That’s the number one reason that you need to make sure that you’re eating enough, even when you’re on a diet. There are other perfectly good reasons.
If you deprive yourself so much that you’re always hungry, it's much harder to hold yourself back from the foods that are going to sabotage your diet.
You may think that skipping a morning yogurt or smoothie is a good idea, but it makes you much more likely to inhale a fat-filled Danish in the break room.
You probably have a pretty good idea when you’re not eating enough but there are some signs your body will send you to make the message clear.
7 Signs You Need to Eat More
1. You can’t stop thinking about food. This is not just a question of not having willpower. It’s your brain telling you that something is wrong.
2. You’ve cut out meals or snacks so that you’re only eating a few small meals a day.
3. You stop getting your period.
4. You have headaches all the time – and they’re really bad.
5. You have no energy for a workout – and if you do go out and exercise, you’re exhausted afterward.
6. You’re cranky all the time.
7. When you do eat, you always wish you’d eaten more.
You may think you’re being clever and speeding up your weight loss by skipping meals and only taking tiny portions – but you’re really working against yourself.
The best way to avoid these issues is to make sure you’re giving yourself enough healthy food to keep your body performing properly.
Avoid high fat, high salt, highly processed foods, and let yourself have enough high protein high fiber snacks between meals to keep you satisfied.
That’s how you’ll stick with your plan, stay healthy and energized, and reach your weight loss goals.
Yours in health and happiness,
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