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Hill Country Health Blog


6 things that affect weight besides diet and exercise

Aug 9

Written by:
8/9/2016 1:35 PM  RssIcon

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One of the most common health myths is that diet and exercise alone will help you reach a healthy weight. In reality, obtaining your goal weight is about more than the number of calories that go in and out.

1. Stress

Managing stress is a big contributing factor when it comes to weight loss. If you’re stressing out every day, it’s going to have a negative impact on your weight and your health. Exercising, taking deep breaths, calling a friend or joining a support group are good tools to help you combat stress.

2. Sleep

Sleep affects every part of our health and is an important component for weight management. People tend to put sleep on the back burner to get more done during the day. Getting eight hours of sleep per night is a good rule of thumb. Even though you may not achieve that every night, getting in the habit of going to bed early will help set you up for success.

3. Constipation

When you’re in a good routine of eating healthy and getting regular exercise, it can be surprising when the scale jumps upward. This could be because of digestive issues. Irregularity can be caused by dehydration, not getting enough fiber in your diet or the lack of good flora in your stomach. If your normal bowel pattern has changed, be sure you’re getting enough water and eating fiber-rich foods such as beans and fruit. You may also want to take probiotic pills that contain live bacteria and yeasts that aid with good digestion.

4. Hypothyroidism

When your thyroid gland isn’t producing enough hormones, it can lead to hypothyroidism — a common cause of weight gain. A blood test measuring the thyroid stimulating hormone can determine whether or not your thyroid is functioning normally.

5. Medications

Some medications can cause you to pack on some extra pounds. Many diabetes and blood pressure medications, as well as depression drugs, are known to cause weight gain. If you suspect a prescription medication is the cause of your weight gain, talk to your physician to see if there are alternative drugs you can take.

6. Water Retention

If your weight suddenly shoots up in a 24-hour period, water retention could be the cause. You may also notice swelling in your body. Eating fatty and salty foods is one reason your body will retain water, especially if you’re not sweating the extra water out through exercise. In addition to limiting sodium intake, using natural diuretics such as lemon water and grapefruit can help reduce water retention.

Weight Graphic


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Central Texas Medical Center
1301 Wonder World Drive
San Marcos, TX 78666
512.353.8979