If you're not losing weight despite exercising and changing your diet, you're probably frustrated, discouraged and maybe even depressed. Weight loss is a complex process involving a variety of factors we control, such as diet, exercise, activity levels, stress and sleep habits and some we can't control, such as genes, gender, hormones, age and body type.
So, where do you start if you're not losing weight? Step one is to see your doctor to rule out any medical conditions. This is especially important if you think you're doing everything right and you haven't seen any changes at all in the scale or your body after several months (or, worse, you're inexplicably gaining weight).
Some health problems and common medications can cause weight gain, including:
- Some thyroid conditions
- Some diabetes medications
- Some antidepressants, including Prozac and Zoloft
- Beta-Blockers for high blood pressure
- Some antipsychotics and anticonvulsants
If you're on any of these medications, talk to your doctor about the side effects and possible substitutes, if that's an option for you. If not, knowing the side effects of what you're taking helps you become more proactive about your situation. You may need to work harder to lose weight and be extra careful with your diet. Keep a food diary, monitor changes in your weight and let your doctor know if you gain more than 5 pounds in a month without any changes to your diet or exercise.