Weight changes during the course of life is a common thing for most people. Some people go through drastic changes every few months whereas others may change just a couple of times in their lives. Much of the time, weight changes are either as a side effect of an illness/medication or due to lifestyle issues.
So if you have found recently that you are putting on weight, even though you are trying hard not too, here are 7 reasons why this may be the case.
1. Lack of Sleep
The problem with not having enough sleep is that you feel tired and your eating cycle becomes somewhat mixed up as well. If you are up until 3-4 am in the morning, you will likely give in to temptation and have something to eat before sleep (which doesn’t get burnt off) and because of that you are less likely to have breakfast at the normal time.
Also, if the body is lacking sleep, or during normal nocturnal hours, a chemical that controls the appetite becomes over stimulated, which then make you hungrier, and worse still when you do eat you will be less full.
You can see the connection now with lack of sleep and putting on weight. By not sleeping as much, it opens up a window where you aren’t really meant to eat, and will have trouble burning those calories off.
2. Antidepressant Medication
Antidepressants are a very good thing if you are suffering from bouts of depression and sometimes anxiety. In fact they can be lifesavers, though not everyone will agree with that because for some people they are not effective, or have too many side effects. One of these side effects is putting on weight, which happens in a significant portion of people taking antidepressants on a long-term basis.
It can be difficult to differentiate between whether the medication is to blame, particularly when you feel better on them, because usually when depression starts to fade, the appetite will improve.
For some people who find them helpful, may start gaining weight, but it is handy to know that there are different antidepressants out there that basically do the same thing, they just interact with each one differently. In some people depression may be the cause for over-eating and weight gain so taking antidepressants may help them to get back to their normal life and shape as well.
For women going through menopause, weight gain is a likely scenario. However, the menopause itself should not be blamed directly as during the same period, the human body starts to slow down which means that metabolism is lower.
However, if you find that you are putting on weight while you are going through menopause then a good indicator to know whether it is the menopause or lifestyle changes is the following:
If the weight gain is around the waist then it is more likely to be due to menopause, whereas putting on weight around the hips and thighs is more likely to be caused by lifestyle issues.
4. Smoking Cessation
It’s really great if you have stopped smoking or are thinking about it but one of the biggest down sides to this, and actually puts people off quitting, is the weight gain associated with it.
On average a typical person will gain anything from 4 to 10 pounds after quittin smoking, which can make quite a difference to appearance. The reason for this is that nicotine acts as an appetite suppressant, and the soon as you quit, the appetite spurts into life again.
Also, nicotine boosts the metabolism which is good while smoking because it makes you practically eat what you like and still burn off. The problem comes however when you stop, because usually a person forgets or fails to realize the need to cut calorie intake, because there wont be nicotine burning all the calories for them.
Finally, giving up smoking is tough work and because it is a habit, people will often replace one habit with another. One of the biggest habits that people adopt is to eat more while they are giving up, either because they are used to doing something while smoking or because they find eating a way of battling the urges, and of course this piles on the pounds.
5. Being on the Pill
Women who go on the pill seem to have more chance of putting on weight, because some of the medications causes weight gain as a side effect. However, not all of them cause it and if you are worried that the pill may be causing you the extra weight, then you should consult your GP because they will be able to advise you and perhaps even change the medication.
Many of you may experience stress at some point and it is how you deal with elevated levels of stress matter the most. When you become stressed, a hormone called cortisol is released which causes an increased appetite.
Another possibility is that when you get stressed, the body’s internal reaction is to seek food and in particular you may start getting into comfort eating. Usually when you comfort eat foods that are high in calories and sugar, it will likely lead to weight gain.
7. Types Of Medication
Unfortunately as human beings are susceptible to illness there is always a need for medication. One of the most common side effects of any medication is weight gain.
The types of medication that have been pointed out to be most likely to cause weight gain are the following:
antipsychotic medication used to treat mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder and other mood disorders, like depression.
- Diabetic medication.
- High blood pressure medication.
- Medications used for seizures.
It is important to discuss your medication with your doctor because they may be able to change it to one that does not cause weight gain, or less so.
As you can see there are a variety of reasons that can cause you to put on weight, and these are just some of them. As always if you are in doubt see a doctor to discuss your weight issues.