Losing weight can seem like an uphill battle. If you feel like you're doing everything right but not seeing results, it may be because you're following misguided advice. Check out these four common dieting mistakes you probably didn't know you were making, and learn how to effectively start shedding pounds!
Exercising Too Much
You may think that waking up at the crack of dawn to run five miles is the key to staying slim, but this could actually be doing you more harm than good. Studies show that excessive exercise is not sustainable for most people long term and can lead to stress. The answer lies in moderation: weight lifting and cardio several times a week will help you maintain your metabolic rate for weight loss.
Only Focusing On The Scale
Forget what you've heard, because the numbers aren't everthing. Weight change is influenced by multiple factors, including fluid retention and how much you consume in a day. In fact, weight can fluctuate by up to four pounds in one day. Increased estrogen levels and other hormonal changes can also lead to water retention, which brings up the number on the scale. So, you can rightfully blame that time of the month for those few extra pounds. And don't worry, they'll soon go away!
Not Eating Enough Fiber
Research suggests that fiber promotes weight loss by curbing your appetite, so starting your day off with oatmeal is the perfect way to get you right on track. According to a study published in the Nutrition Journal, participants who regularly ate oatmeal were able to lower "bad" cholesterol levels, as well as their pant size!
Not Getting Enough Sleep
If you're behind on your Z's, it could be making it harder for you to lose weight. "Appetite and hunger hormones are greatly influenced by how much sleep you get," Dr. Pamela Peeke tells Health.com. "Skimp, and you're more likely to eat everything that's not tacked down."