What To Do When Your Weight Loss Progress Mysteriously Stops

“I’m doing everything I’m supposed to. Or am I?”

It’s common on any weight-loss program to be cruising along losing weight as expected, then suddenly the weight loss stops although you’re still far from goal weight.  This is the infamous and mysterious stall.

Once you know the reason for the stall the way to break it becomes obvious.  The most common reasons are:

  1. You’re not really following the full program any more; you’ve drifted off the path, often unconsciously
  2. Instead of eating just until you’re full or satisfied, you’re stuffing yourself
  3. You need to start or intensify an exercise program
  4. You’ve developed an interfering medical problem such as adrenal insufficiency (rare) or an underactive thyroid; see your doctor
  5. You’re taking interfering medication such as a steroid; see your doctor
  6. You’re strength training program is building new muscle that masks ongoing loss of fat (not a problem!)

If you still can’t figure out what’s causing your stall, do a nutritional analysis of one weeks’ worth of eating, with a focus on daily digestible carb (net carbs) and calorie totals.  You can do this analysis online at places like FitDay (http://fitday.com/) or Calorie Count (http://caloriecount.about.com/).  Perhaps you’re eating many more calories than you thought. Or you may find you’ve been sabotaged by “carb creep”: excessive dietary carbs have insidiously invaded you.  Even if you’re eating very-low-carb, it’s still possible to have excess body fat, even gain new fat, if you eat too many calories from protein and fat.  It’s not easy, but it’s possible.

Steve Parker, M.D.


Filed under Weight Loss

2 responses to “What To Do When Your Weight Loss Progress Mysteriously Stops

  1. Pingback: Is your Lack of Eating Nuts causing you to be Fat? « The Epigenetics Project Blog

  2. I’d add one more, especially after ruling out #1. Slowing down of metabolism which would feed into #2. A cheat day can help that, too, despite being a bit counterintuitive.