Being physically fit isn’t always as easy as managing your diet and exercising on a regular basis. For some people, there are other factors that come into play when trying to maintain a healthy weight and a certain level of fitness. Here are some of the most common fitness factors that we see at Plunkett Fitness that aren’t related to diet or exercise.
We all have hormones, but for some people, hormones can lead to weight gain and other physical changes that may not be so welcome. Hormonal imbalances can lead to increased fat deposits in the body. While hormones can cause weight gain in anyone, it is more common in women.
Menopause is a leading cause of hormonal weight gain in women. When menopause occurs, estrogen levels drop. Estrogen helps control weight, and when these levels drop, it appears that many people start to eat more and exercise less.
A lack of sleep can also lead to hormonal imbalances that contribute to weight gain and insulin resistance. In fact, lack of sleep is associated with both diabetes and obesity, and just two days of sleep deprivation can lead to these problematic hormonal changes.
Your medicine cabinet could also be affecting your fitness level. Some medications that are used to treat conditions like diabetes, depression, and high blood pressure can lead to weight gain. In many cases, people rely on these medications to live, but there may be alternatives that are a little more fitness-friendly. Talking to your doctor about your medications could help you find a medication that won’t contribute to weight gain. Four common medications that are associated with weight gain are Depakote, Deltasone, Prozac, and antihistamines such as Zyrtec. Contrary to popular belief, birth control pills are not associated with weight gain.
3. Medical Conditions
Many medical conditions can have an impact on your weight. Even a common cold can lead to changes in weight, so imagine what more serious illnesses and diseases could do. Part of the reason that illnesses can lead to changes in weight is that our body is using a lot of energy to heal, and healthy eating might not be the first thing on the minds of those battling illnesses. Sticking to a healthy diet even when sick could prevent weight gain from things like the cold or flu.
Medical conditions like those that affect the thyroid are known to cause weight gain as well. The thyroid helps control your metabolism, so damage or problems with this gland can be problematic. Diabetes and other conditions that lead to insulin resistance can also cause weight gain.
Hormonal disorders like Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and Cushing’s syndrome are top culprits of medically-caused weight gain. Since hormones are often contributors to weight gain, it should come as no surprise that hormonal disorders can lead to the same outcome.
Stress is a real problem for millions of people. Strangely, stress can cause both weight loss and weight gain, depending on how the body responds to stress. For some people, stress leads to a loss of appetite. In others, stress can lead to overeating due to the release of cortisol in the body. Cortisol is often referred to as the stress hormone. Cortisol tells the body that we need to eat. Overeating is one of the fastest ways to gain weight, especially if you aren’t doing extra exercise to combat the additional calories in your diet.
Did you know that there are eight different genetic mutations that can cause obesity in humans? While these genetic mutations are rare, they exist. For some people, even a healthy diet and ample exercise don’t help maintain a weight that fits into the healthy range. For those who have a genetic mutation that leads to excess weight or obesity, it can be very challenging to reach ideal weight levels. However, genetic mutations that cause obesity are believed to cause less than five percent of all cases of obesity.
Other genetic factors may also contribute to obesity. In fact, some studies have determined that people of certain races and ethnicities are more likely to be obese than others. If one or both of your parents are overweight or obese, you are also more likely to be overweight or obese.
While diet and exercise are incredibly important components to your overall fitness level, there are other factors that come into play. If you are missing out on the diet and exercise that you need to stay at a healthy weight, Plunkett Fitness is here to help.
Give us a call today at 913-390-3360 to set up a consultation with one of our expert personal trainers. All of our trainers are experienced not only in exercise but also nutrition. We can develop both a diet and an exercise plan that is appropriate for your goals and lifestyle.