By Jenny Phillips our LowCarbTogether Nutritionist
If you find that you hit a weight plateau, here are some tips to get you back into fat-burning mode:
It’s time for reflection. How closely are you sticking to your eating plan? Do you binge at the weekend – another glass of wine, some crisps, a slice of toast – and then work hard on denial during the week? It may feel like you’re in full-on carb restriction, but the only way to really know is to keep a food diary and assess whether you truly are.
Trust that the way to sustained weight loss is not through calorie counting. The chances are that you’ve been counting calories for many years, yet you’re still not consistently at your goal weight. You need a new approach!
If you’ve already made strides to reduce your sugar and starchy carb intake, have you gone far enough? The beauty of CarbScale is that you can adjust it to suit your own goals. Select some of the recipes which are lower carb and begin to add them to your repertoire.
Have the snacks gone, especially those low-calorie (aka high-carb) ones? Intermittent fasting means eating nothing between meals – even a tiny bite will release insulin and put the brakes on your body’s attempts to burn fat.
How often are you drinking alcohol? The calories in booze will be burned instead of fat, and drinking alcohol also increases your appetite. If you regularly enjoy a glass of wine or two, now may be the time to try a short period of abstinence to see if that helps. It need not be forever. Try making some delicious alcohol-free drinks instead.
Are you drinking enough water? Often when we think we are hungry, a large glass of tepid water can be a great distraction. Try to keep a jug or large bottle of water close by so that you can easily keep hydrated and monitor how much you’re actually drinking per day.
Find some time to de-stress. Cortisol, which is released in times of stress, is a catabolic hormone which can scupper your efforts to lose weight by breaking down muscle into glucose (this is called “gluconeogenesis” and occurs primarily in the liver). This helps to fuel you for “fight or flight” response but losing muscle mass will reduce your metabolic rate and make you more likely to put on weight. Take up yoga, restructure your work day, assess your relationships, get more sleep… Do whatever it takes for you to feel more relaxed.
Are you moving enough? Exercise regularly for overall health and to aid weight loss.