Within a couple of months of starting a plant based diet I lost around 8 kilograms. After losing that big amount of my weight it continued to drop slowly but steady.
During my weight loss journey there where moments I had hit a weight loss plateau and things like toning up or losing fat or weight became difficult. In order to get to my ideal body weight and shape I had to overcome these weight loss plateaus.
I want to quickly mention that when you hit a weight loss plateau it doesn’t have to mean your progress has halted. It could mean you are gaining muscle mass and losing body fat. I would recommend to take a look into the mirror instead of on the scale for progress.
Whenever I feel like I hit a weight loss plateau I change up my diet and exercise routine. The last time I changed my approach to diet and exercise I managed to bring my body fat percentage down from 24% to 21,4 in two months. Even though the scale says I am heavier (this is due to muscle being heavier than fat), I see a more toned and lean body in the mirror. I am super happy with the outcome.
I want to share what I did to overcome my weight loss plateau in the hope to help you out or give you some insight. This is especially meant for the people that think they are doing everything right, but still don’t see the results they are aiming for.
1. Cleanse the bowels
I found that cleansing your bowels is very helpful when it comes to losing weight. I noticed this especially when I was eating a high fruit diet. That is why I am back on it and try to eat fruit mono meals for breakfast and for lunch. The high water and fiber content of fruits really help getting my digestive system going, cleanse out my bowels and keep my tummy flat. I got some extra help cleansing my bowels by drinking more vegetable juices and a lot of water. I also started using a great supplement for a while which I initially got to help me clear up my skin some more.
The supplement I started taking was Christopher’s Original Formulas, Lower Bowel Formula, 450 mg, 100 Veggie Caps. I got it from iHerb and was recommended it by Organic Olivia to help clear the skin.
Dr. Christopher’s Lower Bowel formula was designed to encourage the elimination of waste & assist the motor activity of the intestines in a natural way. – source
After using it for a couple of weeks my bowel movements increased and a lot of waste stuck inside my bowels got eliminated. I saw my skin clear up, my waist shrinking, bloat reducing and I also lost some weight.
It is true people, you can have a lot of waste accumulating in your intestines. In the long run that may cause a lot of troubles like malabsorption, constipation and feeling bloated which makes you feel heavier, lethargic and puffier creating the appearance of a bigger you. To avoid that from happening be sure to cleanse your bowels frequently by eating a high amount of fiber filled foods, water rich fruits and hydrating yourself by drinking a lot of water and vegetable juices.
2. Lower salt intake
If you are eating a diet that is high in salt I really recommend you to start consuming less. Taking in high amounts of salt can make you appear a lot puffier. This is because salt retains water in the body. Next to that it can cause many health implications.
Lowering your salt intake and drinking water frequently throughout the day helps reduce the swollen appearance of your body overall. It depends on the person, but you can get away with some more salt in your foods if you drink a lot of water.
In general I don’t overindulge and rather even stay away from foods high in salt. I won’t add extra salt to my food before or after cooking. It also made me enjoy the natural taste of the foods I eat a lot more.
3. Do cardio and body weight exercises regularly
I went from sporadically exercising throughout the week to consistently exercising everyday. I incorporated more body weight exercises and running. Basically lifting my own body weight and running between 3 to 12 kilometers more than once a week.
I rarely do extreme exercises that make me completely exhausted. Sometimes I do go hard. Sometimes I take a brisk walk. I just do what I feel like, but I keep it consistent and daily. The experience of moving my body daily showed me how important it is if you want to maintain a fitter, tighter, slimmer and lighter body.
4. Eat Low-Calorie foods
This might be the most important tip I can give you. It might also be the most effective one out of all of my tips. I think that what you put into your body determines, for the most part, your body shape and appearance.
High calorie foods
Eating high-calorie foods, where the majority of the calories come from fat or protein, can easily result in weight gain over time. Most animal products fall under high-calorie foods with most of, if not all, the calories coming from fat and protein. People tend to overeat on these high-calorie foods like meat, cheese, butter, ice cream, chocolate and eggs which are deprived of fiber and will require you to eat more of in order to fill you up.
It is no wonder why people feel the need to calorie restrict their food intake when eating animal products and go on diets all the time. It will even become necessary to calorie restrict in order to not gain a substantial amount of weight if one continues to eat a lot of high calorie foods.
Low calorie foods
Plant food on the other hand is low in calories, fat and protein. When eating the majority of your calories from plants you actually have to eat more to reach a substantial amount of calories suited for you. When I started eating a plant based diet I noticed that I didn’t have to calorie restrict myself anymore.
Plant foods come with a lot of fiber to fill you up quicker and satiate you more than animal based products. In turn over eating becomes less likely and you’ll be losing weight in the long run.
If you are already eating plant based and want to go the extra mile also try to stay away from high calorie fruits, nuts, seeds, avocados and processed vegan meats and dairy replacements.
Even if going plant based is not part of the plan yet, try to eat the majority of your calories from plant sources. I would recommend more than 80%-90% plant food and the rest junk (yes I call animal products junk, I don’t care hehe) to benefit from this great weight loss tip that is definitely going to help you get over your weight loss plateau. Also educate yourself on plant based eating to not feel like you are depriving yourself. Plant based recipes are amazing! Do some research about the environmental and ethical aspect while you are at it :).
5. Leave enough time between your meals
There is this trend of eating smaller meals throughout the day to keep your metabolism up and lose weight. For some, in the beginning, this might work. People tend to eat smaller portions consisting of “healthier” choices and find themselves losing weight.
Although the portions are smaller and the food is healthier you are in fact giving your digestion a lot to work on. The energy spend on digesting five to six small meals during the day is a waste of energy and could be rather spend on healing and repairing other things in the body as well as your own energy levels.
I also stopped snacking
This is why I basically stopped eating snacks in between meals. I leave more than four hours between meals. My digestive system can do its work before another load of food passes through. Not snacking and eating two to three appropriate portioned meals during the day is something that developed naturally as an eating pattern for me. I do not force or deprive myself when it comes to food.
So now I only eat when I am feeling hungry and try to not give into what my mind wants. I saw and felt many positive changes in my body and mind once I started eating this way. Intuitively I could say. It helped me lose weight and body fat. It also made me feel a lot lighter mentally and physically.
EXTRA: Take cold showers
Here I have a little extra tip. This might only be for you die-hards out there, especially if you live in a colder climate. I kid you not, cold showers have worked wonders for my physique. I slowly progressed from taking them every now and then to taking them every single day (maybe even twice a day).
Exposing your body to cold water has a lot of health benefits. Ever checked out Wim Hof? It helps you lose weight, helps recovery after workouts, improves overall circulation and much more. I see improvements in the tightness, plumpness and glow of my skin. It gives me more motivations to stick to my weight loss and healthy eating goals.
If you have any tips that are working out for you, please leave them in the comment section down below. Other readers and me would love to know!
Thank you so much for reading and I hope to see you here soon.
Lots of love,