Unwanted weight gain can be frustrating, especially when you can’t figure out what’s causing it. Your lifestyle choices play a big role in determining whether or not you’re able to maintain a healthy weight. If the scale keeps climbing, it might be time to make a change.
Here are six hidden reasons why you gain weight and how to fix it:
1. You’re Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little
Your sleep schedule can have either a positive or a negative effect on your health, including your weight. Getting too much or not enough sleep hinders your metabolic functions, which can lead to weight gain.
Try this: Make sure you’re getting the right amount of sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, school-age children 6-13 years old should get 9-11 hours of sleep per night. Teenagers 14-17 years old should get 8-10 hours per night. Adults 18-64 years old should sleep 7-9 hours per night, and adults 65 or older should get 7-8 hours per night.
2. You’re Skipping Meals
Contrary to popular belief, skipping meals won’t help you lose weight. It actually hinders the weight loss process. It causes your metabolism to slow down, which can lead to weight gain. When your body isn’t getting enough food, it also starts to hold onto fat.
Try this: Eat 3-5 meals a day consisting of whole, nutritious foods and health portions. And don’t forget to drink plenty of water throughout the day!
3. You’re Experiencing A Major Life Change
Changing careers, moving, getting married or divorced, having children and other major life changes can take a toll on your body thanks to stress. If you don’t actively work to manage your stress levels during these times, you can easily pack on the pounds.
Try this: When a stressful event occurs in your life, take the time to work on your stress management. Exercise, mediate, read, take a bubble bath before bed. Find what works for you and practice it often to keep your stress levels low.
4. You’re Aging
Each year, you turn another year older. As you age, your metabolism slows down, which can make it harder to maintain a healthy weight. If you notice you’ve been gaining weight as you age, it might be time for a lifestyle change.
Try this: Aim for a more active lifestyle. Find a form of exercise that you enjoy doing each day. Go for a walk or a bike ride, sign up for yoga classes or start swimming several times a week. Make it a goal to become happier and healthier with each passing year.
5. You’re Not Taking Breakfast Seriously
You’ve heard it before: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But how often do you actually eat a nutritious breakfast? If you’re chowing down on sugary treats in the morning or skipping breakfast altogether, it may be the cause of your weight gain.
Try this: Make it a priority to eat a healthy breakfast every morning. Try fresh fruits and whole grains to fill your stomach and get your day started off right.
6. Your Body Is Missing Important Nutrients
When your body doesn’t have the nutrients it needs, things go a little hawywire. Your immune system weakens, your energy levels are low and your metabolism can slow down, which can lead to weight gain.
Try this: Low magnesium, iron or Vitamin D levels can cause weight gain. Make sure you’re getting enough of these nutrients in your diet!