Most people (myself included) got into intermittent fasting for weight loss. This is great if you start losing weight immediately. But for some, this isn’t the case. Oftentimes deeper issues are the cause for this.
1. You’re Eating Foods That Prevent Fat Loss
Fasting is a huge adjustment in the beginning. While it may seem simple to just not eat for a certain period of time, there are many nuances that may be overlooked.
One of the main culprits is your diet.
Unfortunately, in modern times diet has become a complex topic. Along with this is the sheer amount of food that’s available. It can cause you to become completely overwhelmed.
A good way to avoid this overwhelm is to eat simply. Many foods in the Western world are highly processed, filled with sugar and chemicals which prevents weight loss regardless if you practice fasting or not.
It’s best to use popular diets like Keto or Vegan and tailor them to your own needs. No diet is perfect. Find what works for you.
Focus on eating foods like:
- Grass-fed meats-Bison and lamb are popular alternatives to beef.
- Root vegetables– Sweet potatoes, turnips, parsnips, and rutabaga are filled with necessary vitamins and minerals. Fall and winter are best for eating them.
- Leafy greens– Greens like arugula and dandelion have phytonutrients that you won’t find in other foods. Arugula is high in magnesium which can help with anxiety.
- Legumes– Red beans, black beans, garbanzo beans, and beyond. There are so many options. Beans fill you up fast and give you long-lasting energy. Plus they are usually inexpensive.
- Fruit- Eating fruit can be a great alternative for a sweet tooth. Plus if you aren’t worried about carbs they’re a great gluten-free option.
- Nuts and seeds- can help get rid of the urge to munch on chips and other junk foods.
- Oils- highly processed oils (soybean, corn, and canola) are found in many foods. These oils cause inflammation which is the root cause of many diseases. Some are also high in trans fat which causes obesity. Stick with healthier oils like olive, coconut, and lard.
There are many foods advertised as healthy but in reality, are very unhealthy. Do your research and read labels. This helps you consume foods that’ll aid in your weight loss.
2. There Isn’t Enough Movement in Your Life
Fasting isn’t a magic bullet. In order to facilitate weight loss and daily exercise is needed.
At a minimum, you should have at least 30 minutes of exercise five days a week. But for most this isn’t enough. Move as much as possible. Avoid sitting for long periods of time. If you are not losing weight from fasting vary the intensity and duration of your workouts.
- Adding low impact workouts like yoga
- Going on long walks for 45 minutes or more
- Doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT allows your body to burn more fat.
- Participating in fitness classes for added accountability.
Your body is designed to move. While many of us have jobs that are sedentary, we can offset this by intentionally adding more movement.
3. Your Stress Is Too High Which Causes a Low Emotional State
According to a survey done by the American Psychological Association (APA), 3 out every 4 Americans reported having at least one stress symptom in 2017.
Stress symptoms include:
- Chronic pain
- Changes in appetite (related to weight gain)
- Decreased energy
- Changes in libido
- Decreased immune function leading to frequent sickness
As you can see stress is the root cause of many lifestyle-related problems.
A 2015 study found that stress causes the body to metabolize at a slower rate. You literally hold on to fat if your stress levels are too high. Stress also causes you to crave fatty, sugary meals.
Ways to reduce stress are:
- Frequent movement (like I mentioned)
- Having a meditation practice
- Spending time in nature
- Working through problems with a good listener
- Facing challenges that cause overwhelm
The more you focus on reducing your stress, the better chances you have of losing weight and keeping it off long-term.
4. There’s Too Much Anxiety Around Your Diet and Fasting Schedule
Your mind is very powerful. It can literally cause you to sabotage your best efforts in losing weight. A healthy mind equals a healthy body.
In order to cultivate mental health, you must have positive self-talk. This includes when you make mistakes in your diet or fasting schedule. Remember life isn’t perfect. Things won’t always go according to plan.
Oftentimes when we start a new thing like fasting, we want to get everything right the first time.
But that’s not how we learn. We learn by failing. So it’s best to have a relaxed outlook when it comes to your diet and fasting schedule.
Remember what you do most of the time matters more than what you do some of the time. Now, this isn’t a license to have 10 cheat days in a row, but it is ok to have the occasional treat.
This will help you stay consistent in your fasting journey.
Also, make sure that you aren’t too strict with your fasting times. It’s best to mix things up. You don’t even have to fast every day to see massive results. If one day you fast for 16 hours and the next for 13, you’re still on track.
Make sure that you’re eating foods that’ll aid in your weight loss. Eat minimally processed foods with few ingredients. Try to cook at home as much as possible. There, you have the most control of what you’re putting into your body.
Move frequently. Even you can get a workout in, make sure that you walk more often that day.
Work on stress reduction. You’ll be happier and weight will come off a lot easier.
Reduce anxiety around your diet and fasting schedule. You’ll be able to fast long-term and manifest the results you want with consistent success.
Here’s a Guide That’ll Help You With Hunger As You Improve Your Practice
Download the Stop Hunger Guide. Implement the 5 tips suggested. You’ll see a positive change in a short period of time.