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Why Am I Not Losing Weight on South Beach?

By Brian Willett ; Updated July 18, 2017

The South Beach Diet is a weight-loss plan that purports to help you lose weight through both caloric restriction and carbohydrate restriction. It is divided into three phases, the first of which is the most restrictive. The second phase is intended to encourage long-term weight loss, while the third is a maintenance phase. While the South Beach Diet may be beneficial, certain issues can contribute to your inability to lose weight while following it.

Overeating

Even if you're following the low-carbohydrate, high-fiber suggestions of the South Beach Diet, you won't lose weight unless you're burning more calories than you take in each day. An effective but healthy calorie deficit is 500 calories per day, which will set you on pace for 1 lb. of weight loss per week. If you know or can approximate your normal daily calorie intake, aim to eat around 500 calories less per day.

Inadequate Exercise

Although consuming fewer calories can help you lose weight, you can also encourage weight loss by exercising. Exercising burns calories, which can help you reach your caloric deficit. If you choose to lift weights to shed pounds, you may also gain muscle mass, which burns more calories than fat tissue, further enhancing your weight-loss efforts.

Choosing the Right Carbohydrates

While the South Beach Diet does restrict carbohydrates, it doesn't eliminate carbohydrates altogether. However, certain carbohydrates are better to eat than others. One that is beneficial for dieters is dietary fiber. Fiber aids in digestion and encourages feelings of fullness, so it can help you lose weight by controlling your appetite. Avoid simple sugars in favor of complex carbohydrates, that break down more slowly and keep you feeling fuller for longer.

Inaccurate Calorie Calculation

Yu won't lose weight if you're calculating your calorie intake incorrectly. The South Beach Diet recommends higher protein and fat intake, particularly the consumption of fatty meat. Due to the lack of standardization of nutrient content in cuts of meat, you may inaccurately calculate your calorie intake and overeat. Miscounting fats can be particularly troublesome, because each gram of fat contains nine calories, compared to four calories per gram for protein and carbohydrates.

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