Definitely doing all the 'right' things but aren't seeing results when it comes to weight loss?
These are some of the snacks and lifestyle habits that could be working against you...
1. You make your coffee or tea with milk and sugar
Making your beverages taste like a treat can make you feel like you're saving calories elsewhere, but according to a new study published in the Public Health Journal, that's usually not the case.
Researchers from the University of Illinois and University of California compared the diets of 19,400 coffee and tea drinkers and found that the people who all but turned their daily drinks into dessert, tend to eat worse overall. Their diets contained more fat, saturated fat and sugar than those who drank their tea or coffee black.
2. You opt for diet drinks
In studies carried out by the University of Texas Health, people who drank two or more diet soft drinksdaily, had waist size increases that were six times greater than the people who didn't consume diet soft drinks.
The reason for the weight gain couldn't be put down to one thing, but the researchers suspect it's because we think we can eat more when we've chosen a 'diet' option, and then we overcompensate.
3. You save up calories
Saving calories until the end of the day can send your hunger hormones into a spin. Researchers at The National Institute of Ageing found that middle-aged women who eat their daily amount of calories in one sitting, produce more of the hormone ghrelin, (responsible for hunger) than when they eat the same amount of calories in meals throughout the day. Forward meal planning is key.
4. You eat with a crowd
Socialising is obviously great for wellbeing, but research published in the Journal of Nutrition states that a meal consumed with a friend is typically 33% larger than a meal eaten alone.
A meal with 8 or more friends? The size can increase by 96%. Simply put, it's because you spend more time at the table talking and grazing – which is fine, provided that it's not every single night of the week.
5. You can't stand your job
Spend Sundays dreading the week ahead? Those anxiety pangs, aka, surges of the hormone cortisol, can have a big effect on your hunger hormones, resulting in the consumption of sugary snacks that make you feel better for about five seconds.
Avoid feelings of dread where you can (read:apply for that other job!), and your metabolism will probably thank you for it.