Author: Nicholas Gregory, MA, CSCS
According to a report published by the CDC in 2018, nearly half of the entire population of the United States attempted to lose weight between the years of 2013-2016.
Let that sink in. Approximately 150 million people were trying to lose weight during this period. As that number continues to grow, why do success rates not follow? Why is it so difficult for so many to lose weight and keep it off? Outside of crash diets and unrealistic expectations in weight loss, we have identified five common reasons as to why most weight loss plans fail.
1.Lack of support
Let’s face it. Losing weight is not always easy. New behaviors, habits, and unexpected roadblocks are stressful, especially when faced alone. For so many, a weight loss plan is done on a whim, without planning or the development of proper support. Support can look different for many but its benefits should not be ignored. Without support, the journey can be isolating and short lived.
Support in any weight loss plan allows you to share challenges, get new ideas, and have a safe space to process and develop. At Noom, we have support built into our app. Apart from the one-on-one support you get from your goal specialist each day, your group coach will help facilitate community, support, and group challenges to create the support you need.
This is a space for YOU and you are able to share as much or as little as you want. The Noom app allows you to easily share meals and exercise from your logs with the group and thread pictures of curriculum-based activities. The humanization and function to share this information gives you multiple perspectives and approaches to common roadblocks experienced with most weight loss plans.
2. Not personalized
Another breaking point for most weight loss plans is the fact that they are not personalized. Broad-reaching food and exercise suggestions are marketed to the masses, without considering personal preference or schedule. Without taking into account these specifics, recommendations become forced choices and will lack long term sustainability.
At Noom, your Goal Specialist will help you identify the habits, choices, and schedule that best fits your life. If you aren’t going to stick with something for life, why do it at all?
3. Only focused on calories
A truth in any weight loss plan that shouldn’t be ignored is that to lose weight, you must find a calorie balance that allows you to burn more calories than you consume (calorie deficit). Physiologically speaking this is how weight is lost but that does not mean you must restrict calories to an unhealthy or unsustainable level.
Too often, calorie restriction is the only variable weight loss plans address. Restricting calories to an unhealthy amount does not equate to more weight loss but rather to more burnout and lack of sustainability.
At Noom, we believe finding ways to be more active and remain mindful of food choices is a better approach to finding a favorable calorie balance.
4. “All or nothing” mindset
“All or nothing” thinking is exactly what it sounds like. You are either all or nothing. A success or failure. Love or hate. There is no middle ground, balance, or long-term picture. “All or nothing” thinking can be so prevalent in most weight loss plans because the choices these plans encourage are at their core all or nothing.
Take typical weight loss food choices for example. No carb? All or nothing (as in no carbs and no fun). How about no processed foods? All or nothing. So often, weight loss plans push an all or nothing style of thinking that is unhealthy and makes choices that much harder to follow.
5. Not sustainable
The final and most common reason weight loss plans fail is the simple fact that they aren’t sustainable. What do all the other reasons mentioned above have in common? Lack of sustainability. If a weight loss plan tells you to do X and not Y, then it’s not sustainable. What if you don’t like the food or exercise recommendations? What if you can’t afford the supplements? A program that does not put you in the driver’s seat will often fall short when it comes to being sustainable.
What is true sustainability? At Noom we believe a sustainable weight loss plan is the one that fits into your life, preferences, and schedule. We also believe it is the plan that you are able to do for the rest of your life! Interested in learning more about sustainable change that will get you to your goals? Meet your personalized support team and get started today on your sustainable weight loss journey!