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Weight loss is slowed down now

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Dear doctor,

I am a little obese by nature and tried reducing it to normal weight, from the past 11 months. I managed to accomplish a weight loss of 65 lbs by this period. But now, my weight loss speed has been reduced. What can I do to speed it ip again, as before?  Can a change in diet plan help?  I am diabetic also.

Thanks for your question.

First of all, congratulations for your accomplishment. You are experiencing something called a ‘plateau’ phase in your weight loss effort. This is a common phenomenon in dieters.  This slowing down of weight loss is due to various reasons. One reason is that, your daily calorie needs after weight loss will become less. This results in a weight gain  as weight loss is being slowed down.  Another reason is that during the first phase of weight loss, you are losing just water, carbohydrates and muscle glycogen.


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Category: Family Physician-GP
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Expert:  Dr. John Fuller replied 4 Days.

Weight can also be affected by the type of weight you are losing. In the beginning, it's common to lose weight faster because you're losing body water, stored carbs (muscle glycogen), etc. At 10 months into a diet, you're likely to be losing mostly fat, but a pound of fat contains more calories and takes longer to lose than muscle, water, and other things. But after the first phase, calories you lose is by the depreciation of fat. Fat is lighter than water and carbs. So, losing them will not have much effect on weight loss.

Another possible reason is that you have lost muscle weights. Muscles are consumers of energy. As the muscle mass reduces, energy consumption reduces. This results in a reduction in energy consumption, which translates to less weight loss.

Last but not least, you might have changed your food preferences from the last 11 months. While you started you might be more careful in selecting foods. But now, it might be changed. So, recheck your food preferences and plan a new diet plan with the help of your dietician.

Better go with some more exercises than cutting down on your food. This will add to your body build-up and can help in burning calories. You will be resulted with a body of shape and strength also.

Hope this is informative enough for you. Stay healthy.


Dr. John Fuller
Category: Family Physician-GP
Experience: 
MD - New York Institute of Technology, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine
Internship, Family Medicine - Lutheran Medical Center
Residency, Family Medicine - The Mount Sinai Hospital
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