Home HealthTopics Health Centers Reference Library Research
Join us on Facebook Join us on Facebook Share on Facebook

Obesity and Weight Management

Not losing weight

01/16/2007

Question:

I am facing problems to loose weight. I have a BMI of 23, 1,67 m and 63,6kg. That means I am not really fat. I just want to keep the weight I had one year before. One year ago I had 59kg. I`ve got many kilos (66kg) because I was going on a high fat diet (ice cream and chocolate) and without exercises.

I always did around 3h/week of exercises while I was at my hometown in Brasil, but since I moved to Luxembourg in 2004 I stoped all due to the cold weather).

I started following a diet (1000 kcal average) at Jan 2006 and doing sports, but I just saw a result at loosing weight counting from April. I lost 5kg till August (60kg).

I also increased a lot the sport hours per week, as I started running and train to a half marathon since July.

But from August on, although I doubled my sport activity and continued with a diet of 1300 kcal I got most of the kg I`ve lost (63,6kg now).

I would like to add as well that those kg are fat and not muscles. I have an equipament to measure fat % and I am back to 30%. So I cannot say that I am getting weight because I am loosing fat but getting muscles.

Also, I have hipotyroid, but it`s medicated and under control since 1 year and half.

If you would like to have more information I have an complete dairy of what I eat, weight and quantity of sports I do each day, with tables and graphics.

Why I don`t manage to loose weight?

Answer:

You don't say if you are male or female, but I am guessing that you are female. Your diary of sport activities/exercises might be helpful in determining if the exercises are aerobic ones or if they include some strength training also. If your body fat is staying the same, it sounds like you need to include more strength exercises.

Also, you may not be eating enough calories. If you greatly increased your aerobic exercise by running to get in shape for the marathon and only increased your calorie intake from 1000 kcal to 1300 kcal, you may have pushed your body into starvation mode. Or it may have gone into starvation mode when you started eating only 1000 kcal per day. In starvation mode your body's basal metabolic rate (BMR) slows down and you need fewer calories each day. To increase your BMR you need to eat more calories (try 1600 to 1800) and increase your strength training.

Strength exercises build muscle. Aerobic exercises don't. It takes about 10 times more calories to maintain a pound of muscle than a pound of fat.

Also, you didn't mention your age. I'm guessing that you are in your 20's. However, your body composition shifts to a higher body fat composition after menopause, so if you have reached menopause, that could be one reason for your body fat being at 30% when your height for your weight is okay.

Good luck to you.

For more information:

Go to the Obesity and Weight Management health topic, where you can:

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