Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit?



Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit is question of many people in a Calorie Deficit diet. Despite a strict diet with high determination, many people still do not achieve the desired results.

 Some cases of hard training and very strict diets have failed in the goal of losing fat and improving physique.  Then, they blamed the physical condition and accepted the obesity.  The cause of this Calorie Deficit But Not Losing Weight phenomenon is the survival mechanism of the body.

Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit?

1- The reason for Calorie Deficit But Not Losing Weight

The most important principle is to create a Calorie Deficit. The loss of calories is created when the energy is consumed more than the intake amount".

Our bodies obey the laws of conservation of energy.  Fat cells are the body's stored energy.  Therefore, in order to lose weight and excess fat, we must eat less energy than we consume.  All diets adhere to this principle.

However, eating too little for a long time causes the body to fall into a state of using less energy, thereby adjusting to the amount of food.  This Calorie Deficit phenomenon is called metabolic adaptation.  This is a decrease in metabolic energy, usually occurring when we keep a Calorie Deficit persistently.  The body adapts to eating low calories by consuming less energy on its own. This is the body's own survival mechanism.

According to this trainer, the endocrine system plays an important role in the metabolic adaptation.

Thyroid hormones directly affect metabolism.  In the process of reducing food intake to create a Calorie Deficit, the body has fluctuations in hormone levels in the body.  Many studies show that levels of T3 (the type of thyroid hormone) are lower when we lose weight and lead to slow metabolism.

Leptin (the hormone that controls appetite) is secreted from fat cells.  When there is a Calorie Deficit, fat cells get smaller, causing less leptin to be secreted.  The body senses this and reduces metabolism, thereby conserving energy.

The normal leptin concentration is 3.7-11.1 ng / mL.  For people with a large Calorie Deficit for a long time, this hormone level is significantly reduced.  According to research from Harvard University (USA) published in 2010, a professional bodybuilder on a 6-month diet has a leptin concentration of 1.36 ng / mL.

Meanwhile, ghrelin (hunger hormone) is secreted from the stomach and affects responsible areas in the brain.  When we diet, high levels of ghrelin increase hunger. The brain receives signals that the body is lacking energy, reducing metabolism to preserve.

 In addition, many other hormones are also related to survival regimes such as insulin, testosterone, cortisol ...

Therefore, when we eat less, the body will make changes in hormones to slow down the process of energy consumption, thereby limiting the effectiveness of weight loss as well as excess fat."

Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit

Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit? / ph: pexels

2- We consume less energy than we imagined

 The body's output energy in a day is made up of four main factors:

- Metabolic Energy (BMR):

This is the amount of energy the body needs while at rest, helping to maintain basic life activities.  It is also our largest calorie consumption at 70%.

 When dieting, losing fat, this index is decreased by hormonal changes, causing the body to switch to survival mode.  This is also the main reason why the fat loss process is delayed even if we eat less.

- Digestive Calories (TEF):

When you eat, your body uses a portion of its energy to digest food.  TEF accounts for 10% of total calories consumed.  As a result, less eating leads to a decrease in TEF, leading to a lower total energy consumption.

-  Daily activities (NEAT):

This energy source comes from all daily activities such as commuting, cooking, working ... They account for about 10% of total energy consumption. NEAT decreases with 2 ways. When our diet combines exercise, our muscles develop, helping the body to function more efficiently.  Before, we walked 10,000 steps and burned 500 calories.  However, as muscles grow, 10,000 steps will only consume 300 calories. "
 Another scenario is that we are less active unconsciously.  Typically, busy work requires us to sit more and move less.

- Exercise (TEA): Many people mistakenly think this is the main source of energy consumption.  However, it only accounts for 10% of the total energy consumed for the day.

The advantage of regular exercise is that in addition to consuming calories during exercise, the body continues to burn energy at rest through its oxygen compensating effect (EPOC).  In addition, the muscle development through exercise also causes the BMR to increase, helping us to consume more calories.

 Incorporating hormonal changes due to too little calorie intake is the reason to limit the results of weight loss, excess fat.

3- How to solve the situation of Calorie Deficit But Not Losing Weight?

To deal with this situation of Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit, the solution for us to avoid falling into a survival regime is to slowly cut calories instead of reducing the amount of food too suddenly.  People should apply refeed (short-term controlled calorie changes) or calorie / carb cyling (rotation of carbohydrates or total energy) to relieve pressure on the body that will helps solve the situation of Calorie Deficit But Not Losing Weight

Why Am I Not Losing Weight in a Calorie Deficit?

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