Why Is It so Hard to Lose Weight?

Why Is It so Hard to Lose Weight?

You embark on a diet with renewed determination to finally gain the upper hand on your weight, but the needle on the scale refuses to budge all that much. Or perhaps you regularly lose weight and you quickly put it back on. 

Whatever the issue, weight loss can be an extremely difficult and frustrating battle.

Our team of highly experienced weight loss specialists here at Weight Loss Institute of Arizona is all too familiar with the challenges that come with weight loss. While everyone is unique, there are a few hurdles that are more common than others when it comes to weight loss, and we discuss them here.

In your genes

Let’s first tackle one of the hardest challenges with weight loss — your genes. Researchers have identified more than 400 different genes that can influence your weight. These genes can play a role in several different areas, including your:

While there’s some disagreement as to just how much you may be genetically predisposed to carrying extra weight — expert opinions range from 25% to 80% — they all agree that genes do play a role.

A new normal

Most people gain weight over time, which means many systems in your body adjust accordingly and create a new normal. These systems include your metabolism, your hormones, and your fat cells themselves.

So when you embark on a weight loss program, you upset this new weight set point, and your body scrambles to return to what it considers normal. 

For example, your body may increase the level of hunger hormones because it feels it’s being robbed of its normal diet. Your fat cells, too, become used to being a certain size, so they horde the fat when you diet.

This may not only impede your efforts when you first start a new diet. This new normal may also sabotage your results down the road as you succumb to its demands and quickly regain the weight you’ve lost.

Increasingly poor diets and environment

Americans take in up to 3,600 calories a day, which is an increase of 24% over the past 50 years. This caloric intake is far higher than what’s generally recommended, which is around 1,600-2,000 for women and 2,000-2,600 for men, depending on activity levels. 

The jump in caloric intake is largely due to the increasing reliance on processed and junk foods, which are high in calories and low in nutrients. Not only are these foods not terribly good for us, but they’re everywhere and almost impossible to avoid. 

We know these foods are often called convenience foods, but that’s about their only attribute. Grabbing a quick lunch on your break often means hitting a fast-food restaurant because finding healthier options is time-consuming and difficult.


Americans are under more and more stress, which can wreak havoc on your ability to lose weight. This state of high alert leads to stress eating, and it can disrupt the normal signaling in your body by affecting your hunger and appetite hormones.

When you’re under stress, you may not sleep as well, and studies are beginning to connect the dots between the rising body mass index rate in the United States as it corresponds to a decrease in hours of sleep.

Of course, there are many other factors that can make weight loss difficult, but our point here is that we understand that losing weight is not an easy proposition. If you’ve been struggling to find a solution, it may be time to consider some form of bariatric surgery.

We offer a wide range of weight-loss options at our offices in Tempe, Glendale, Mesa, Tucson, and Phoenix, Arizona, and we invite you to contact us to explore them all.

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