Weight Loss Plateau

Headline What is the "Weight loss plateau"?
Kicker Why do I lose weight... then gain more?
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What is the "weight loss plateau"?

As protein and carbohydrates are used from the cells it causes a reduction in the amount of lean mass forcing the metabolism to decrease, this means the individual now requires less energy to maintain the new weight. In other words, the body has gradually adapted to match the new energy intake! There is a second effect, as the body becomes progressively lighter less calories are burned during movements so the overall energy expenditure also reduces.

The reduction in lean mass and the lowered energy expenditure both help restore a balance of energy from any initial reduction in calorie intake and can even slow progress from the extra exercise sessions often undertaken when attempting to lose weight.

The bottom line is the initial 500 calories per day reduction no longer continues to be effective for losing further weight as the body no longer recognizes that there is a calorie deficit. There will always be an adaptation to match any lower calorie intake simply because the body needs to conserve energy for survival.



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How do I defeat the weight loss plateau?

The facts above means it is vital that dieters begin by reducing calorie intake slowly, this limits the loss of lean weight and helps keep metabolism high during dieting. Also, any exercise done within the first 10 - 15 workouts needs to be light and for longer durations to enable the energy system to adapt to the change by "switching its gear" into fat burning mode!

If calories are cut too much too soon the body is forced to burn more and more protein especially when glycogen (carbohydrate) stores run low. This seriously lowers the metabolism and dieters hit a period where they just cannot lose any more weight "the weight loss plateau", then when they give up and go back to the old eating habits the body shoots back into a positive energy balance, which causes many dieters to GAIN BACK FURTHER WEIGHT!

It’s a physiological fact that while losing weight we all tend to lose lean muscle which lowers our metabolism. The idea is to lose the least amount of muscle by boosting the metabolism then reduce calorie intake gradually to maintain a fast energy expenditure.

Boosting your metabolism works because when you do lose some lean mass the metabolism will still be high enough to effectively burn extra calories from the fat stores, which also means you don't need to be as strict when dieting!

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