If you've been hitting it hard in the gym and mostly hitting your nutritional goals, chances are there will be a time when you aren't getting the results you are hoping for.
That's okay to get frustrated - this is where most people quit. Instead, try a few of these tweaks in your nutrition to get over this plateau.
Before we jump into the tweaks, you have to know that if you aren't consistently getting physical exercise and consistently eating a reasonable diet, you can't call this a plateau. The type of foods you eat cause your body weight to fluctuate due to water retention.
Consistency is key.
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8 Nutrition Tweaks to Bust Through a Weight-Loss Plateau
These aren't going to be magic - it takes work. Hard, consistent work.
#1 - Eat More Fiber
Before you go to the store to buy some fiber supplements, try some food.
Fiber helps to keep our blood sugar level and prevents spikes. Fiber-rich foods are generally voluminous and it requires you to chew longer to break it down.
This gives your body time to process that you are eating, giving you satisfaction after eating. Foods that are fiber dense are usually lower in calories.
- Split Peas
- Brussels sprouts
- 100% whole grains
#2 - Try More Whole Foods
Eating whole foods have a few benefits, but one of the most useful benefits is that whole foods are usually lower in calories than a highly-processed version.
Prepackaged foods are convenient and you could eat these and still stay in your calorie goals - but you will be hungry and lacking nutrients you could have had.
Real, whole foods are more satisfying and more nutritiously dense. Those "healthy" granola bars, cereals, and chips are all full of calories you don't need.
Do your research.
#3 - Eat More Protein
Start making it a priority to get some protein into every meal you eat. This helps with your body's utilization of amino acids.
Some research shows that eating proteins higher in leucine may have an effect on increasing the burning of body fat. Studies show eating about 25-35 grams of protein every four to five hours to get enough leucine to see a positive effect.
- Cottage Cheese
- Greek Yogurt
- Hard-boiled Eggs
- Chicken Salad
#4 - Up the Water Intake
I'm willing to bet that the majority of people who read this article is at least partially dehydrated.
Sure, you were peeing clear earlier, but you haven't had a drop of water in hours. Staying hydrated is a constant task, not chug a bunch of water and forget about it.
Keep water available at all times and drink. Stick to water, unsweetened iced tea, or green tea.
#5 - Take a Look at Calorie Goals
As you lose weight, your body gets more efficient. This is why you have to reevaluate your nutritional goals as you go. It's not stationary.
A dip in your metabolism is normal with weight loss, we just have to reevaluate our current workout schedule, our basal metabolic rate, and any other daily physical activities.
#6 - Get Rid of Empty Calories
I'm not saying give up every tasty thing you like to drink, but moderation is key.
It's very easy to relax your diet by not being conscious of how much we are indulging. This approach makes it hard to maintain a steady weight loss.
Start writing everything down that you eat and drink. The late-night desserts and grabbing a mini Snickers from the candy bowl every time you go to make a copy does add up.
Look at calories in a nutritional sense - that chocolate is great, but you just ate at least 100 calories that provide very little nutrition. That 100 calories could have been 3.5 ounces of chicken breast - giving you the leucine you need for better fat-burning capabilities.
#7 - Start Getting More Accurate
If you can honestly say that you've been eating consistently - it's time to get more accurate.
Now is the time to quit lying to yourself. If you've lost weight by paying attention to your portion sizes, it's time to bust out the scales.
Buy some nice measuring cups and spoons, a nice digital food scale, and some Tupperware to meal prep.
The more consistent and concise you get with your measurements, the more control you get over your body.
#8 - Pay Attention to Your Body
It's not uncommon that we eat something that makes us bloat up. That constipation and trouble breaking it down could be a food sensitivity.
If you eat something and you get gas, bloating, nausea, diarrhea, constipation, fatigue, joint pain, or brain fog - it's time to pay attention.
It may be worth your time talking to your doctor or a registered dietitian for a diet analysis. They have special blood tests that can determine what food sensitivities you have.
Learn your body.
Wrapping It Up
I keep talking about consistency for a reason.
I've been there, I've lost weight and gained it back. I've lost weight, hit a plateau and binged for 2 weeks. I know what it's like to get stuck.
So take these tips and run with them. They don't work unless you do.