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Obesity and Weight Management

What is a plateau stage in a diet?

03/21/2006

Question:

Hello there! I have been on a diet (weight watchers) for 9 weeks. During the first 5 weeks I lost 13 pounds. After that day, I have not been able to loose any weight. I have been following the diet and counting the points as they suppose but I have not been successful. I just would like to know if there is a change that I should make or reduce points of my diet. Thank you in advance.

Answer:

It seems you have reached a plateau. Jump starting continued weight loss might best be accomplished by increasing your physical activity. If you reduce your points, you'll be cutting calories further, and that might tell your body to go into starvation mode if it isn't there now. Increasing your physical activity will increase your resting metabolic rate (the calories you burn while doing 'nothing'). The 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that you engage in 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity most days of the week if you are trying to lose weight. In starvation mode your body has a very low resting metabolic rate (RMR) so it doesn't use many calories. You need to boost this, and increasing your physical activity is the key.

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Response by:

Sharron   Coplin, MS, RD, LD Sharron Coplin, MS, RD, LD
Former Lecturer
Food & Nutrition
College of Education and Human Ecology
The Ohio State University