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In the modern world where a certain ‘ideal’ size/weight is revered, failing to lose weight despite your efforts can be frustrating. Still, it’s good to know that many factors, including gestational conditions, genetic makeup, hormonal changes, age, and dieting, might be to blame.

The quest for weight loss is highly popularized, and there is just a thin line between health and toxicity when it comes to shaking off those extra pounds. People have different reasons for losing, and while some are healthy and make sense, others do not make sense and may be unhealthy. Some reasons for weight loss include being fit, staying healthy, achieving self-esteem, being ideal for the beauty industry, and managing different medical conditions, including obesity, diabetes type 2, and heart diseases, all of which are worsened by excess weight. As sad as it is, your efforts to lose weight may end up in vain, and this can rob your joy, leaving you frustrated. Here are some reasons why your quest for weight loss may not be successful and tips that can help you henceforth.

What many consider successful in losing weight

Let’s first understand what the world views as successful in the weight loss industry. According to many people, particularly in the US, weight loss efforts are only successful when one loses certain pounds he has set himself. While it is good to have goals, especially in figures while trying to lose weight, it’s worth remembering that it’s not these very figures whose attainment should define success in weight loss; there is more to it. The other thing that many people consider definite in weight loss is attaining a certain ‘ideal’ size, which many dieters in the fitness industry are after. Sadly, the ideal size isn’t always applicable for everyone because your genetic makeup largely determines what you will look like even after losing weight. Honestly, there is so little you can change about nature.

What should define success in weight loss quests

Rather than comparing yourself with others who have the ideal size to determine your success in weight loss, you need to focus on yourself. As said, diet and exercise might determine your weight, but only to some extent; genetics matter a lot. As such, you should look for other parameters to inform your success in weight other than attaining the ideal size and shaking off a particular number of pounds. Rather, look for bulges in the scale. For instance, if you started off at 70 kg and are at 65 kg after 2 months, that’s actually a huge milestone in your weight loss quest. Besides, look for small improvements, including the non-scale indicators such as flexibility, mobility, endurance in exercise, recovery, etc. You started off climbing those stairs while panting, and now you don’t pant as much; why not see this as an aspect of success? Alternatively, your weight on the scale might not change significantly, but you might notice that your belly fat has really reduced. You need to celebrate this aspect of success, even though you might not have had the exact figure you are looking for. Indeed, there is more to weight loss.

Weight loss is popularized, even among those who don’t need it.

According to a recent study conducted by the VeryWell Fit website, about one-third of those trying to lose weight don’t need it. That may sound a bit off, leaving you wondering who should lose weight. As mentioned at the outset, some weight loss reasons are healthy and sensible, while others are more than far-fetched. If you are losing weight to fight a medical condition or lose extra fat, chances are high that you are on it. How about just losing weight because your friends are doing it or because you want to have the ideal size, even though you are already thin? Not as much. Yet, one in three people is losing weight for the wrong reasons when he doesn’t necessarily need it. As such, you might become frustrated when you don’t attain your goals. Nevertheless, weight loss failure can be frustrating to anybody, whether you needed to lose weight or not, and this takes us to the next section addressing why weight loss success may not be your portion.

Why you might not shake off pounds no matter what

The umbrella tips for losing weight revolve around diet and exercise, which some people might try but not find success. Here are the top reasons why you might shake off pounds no matter what;

  • Medical conditions

A large number of people are losing weight to manage one or several health conditions, but the same conditions could make weight loss impossible. For instance, studies have shown that women with lipedema, a problem that causes excess accumulation of fats in legs and hips, could jeopardize weight loss. Hypothyroidism also lowers metabolism, making weight loss success delayed or impossible.

  • Age

While young, you might struggle with weight loss, but the struggle may get worse once you hit 50. Many postmenopausal women find it more challenging to lose weight than while young. This is partly due to hormonal imbalances that come with menopause, although a sedentary lifestyle may also play a role.

  • Genetic makeup

Every person has their lineage, and their shape likely follows the ancestors. Of course, dietary and environmental changes have occurred over the centuries and decades, significantly changing shapes, but this does not mean that they have had a complete influence on a person’s genes. As such, you might not attain the ideal size no matter how hard you work for it.

  • Gestational influences

The conditions a person is exposed to in the womb could partly be blamed for weight loss failure. For instance, how much fat your mother put in when she was pregnant with you could determine whether you will have problems scaling down fats or not.

  • Yo-yo dieting

Yo-yo dieting is a serious problem that can make weight loss hard. Dieting on and off and losing and regaining weight puts your body in a rollercoaster system that resists weight loss efforts in the end. For instance, losing many fats and regaining them sends the wrong impulses to the brain, which signals the cells to accumulate more fats to avoid starvation or deprivation in case you start dieting. This may make it extra hard to lose the accumulated fats no matter what.


Although diet and exercise are ideal methods to losing weight, other factors, including yo-yo dieting, genetic makeup, gestational influences, and medical conditions, may jeopardize your efforts. As such, you might struggle with no success, leaving you unhappy. Instead of working for the ‘ideal’ size or shape or judging your weight loss success by shaking off a certain number of pounds, focus more on your health and celebrate the small but healthy milestones that signify success in weight loss.

Charlotte Cremers