Overcoming a Weight Loss Plateau

Plateaus drive me crazy. I want my body to be a series of well formed equations, a deterministic system; a game of skill, not luck, if you will. When you hit a plateau, you go from thinking you understand it all to realizing that there are hidden, confounding variables that can screw up your success. The trick to not giving up in disgust, is to concentrate on maintaining your current progress while keeping an open mind to plateau busting tricks.

As you lose weight, your body adapts and what worked the first week probably won't work with the same level of success in the 12th week and so on. It isn't fair but it's true for most people so set your expectations accordingly.

Cut the Dairy

Dairy (milk, yogurt, cream, even butter!) can sometimes cause your body to release insulin. It doesn't seem intuitive since cream and butter don't have carbs but it seems to be true for some people just the same. Try going dairy free for a week and once you've been losing weight consistently again, you can try adding it back. You may or may not be able to get away with dairy until you reach your goal weight.

Cut the Fruit and High Carb Vegetables

Many fruits contain more glucose than you would think and starchy vegetables simply turn into glucose once they are digested. Try cutting out all fruit (or just stick to berries) and starchy vegetables (e.g. potatoes, yams, squash, etc.) for a week. If you aren't such which vegetables are okay, either look them up or stick to leafy green vegetables.

Consider Your Meal Portions

This could go either way. Maybe the amount of food you are consuming is meeting all of your body's energy requirements so you aren't being forced to tap into your body fat. Try eating just enough to not be hungry instead of eating until you don't feel like eating more. Instead of having the entire steak, try having just 1/2 or 3/4 and ask yourself if you could stop now and not be hungry. When you wake up and your aren't hungry, try skipping breakfast. If you get hungry, don't try to tough it out, EAT! Intermittent Fasting (IF) isn't a cruel punishment; it's a perk of the LCHF diet where you sometimes just don't feel hungry (e.g. "I could eat but I won't think about food if I don't").

Or maybe you have been stressing over every calorie and thinking that if you stay "a bit hungry" that you'll lose weight faster. *SMACK* Stop being a silly overachiever and follow the diet. If you are hungry, EAT! Make sure you are getting enough fat (it will help with the hunger) and try having an indulgent meal or two.

Give Yourself a Break

It is a cruel joke that stress causes side effects (such as weight gain) which causes more stress! If you have been religiously weighing yourself and tracking calories every day, maybe try reducing how often you do so. Don't change your diet, simply stop thinking (and stressing!) about it as much. It can take a while to get over a plateau, you can either be miserable the entire time or you can focus on other things in life and maintain your progress until the weight starts coming off again.