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Ellie MD
05/20/2024
5 min read

Losing weight can be tough, and sometimes it feels like you’re stuck. But it’s not just about eating less and moving more. Your weight is influenced by many things: your hormones, how old you are, the way you live, and even your family’s body traits. If you’re not losing weight or if you’re gaining it, you might want to think about using semaglutide, a medicine that can help.

Setbacks in Weight Loss Journey:
  • Your family’s body traits
  • Hormones
  • What you eat
  • How you live
  • Your age

Some of these things are easier to change than others. We can choose healthier foods and change some of our daily habits, but we can’t change how old we are or our family’s body traits. Sometimes, doctors can help balance out hormones. Here’s a closer look at why losing weight might be challenging for you.

Eating Habits

What you eat is key to managing your weight. If you eat too many calories, you’ll likely gain weight. Many people start a diet to lose weight, but it can be hard to stick to. Eating right can be tricky, but here are some simple tips:

  • Stay away from extra sugar, processed, and deep-fried foods.
  • Don’t drink sugary drinks.
  • Drink an amount of water that’s half your body weight (in ounces) every day.
  • Keep track of your meals.
  • Make sure you’re getting enough protein (25-30% of your total calories).
  • Choose whole, unprocessed foods.
Your Daily Routine

If you sit a lot at work or at home, you might not be moving enough. Things like exercise, sleep, stress, and your relationships can all affect your weight. Changing some of these can help you manage your weight better. It’s important to find time to move your body. Activities like running, walking, cycling, or dancing can help you burn calories.

Lifting weights is also important. Muscle and fat might weigh the same, but muscle is denser and burns more calories. So, building muscle can help you slim down.

Sleep is another big factor. Not getting enough sleep can really increase your chances of becoming overweight. In fact, adults who don’t sleep enough are 55% more likely to be overweight!

Age

When you get older, you might notice that shedding pounds isn’t as simple as it used to be. That’s because as we grow older, our bodies don’t burn calories as quickly, the makeup of our body shifts, and our hormones start to swing up and down. Women often see this more after they go through menopause.

Even though we can’t turn back the clock on our age, we can still eat healthily, stay active, and make sure we’re getting plenty of rest.

Genetics

The weight you carry might be influenced by your family’s health history, but it doesn’t play as big of a role as people used to think. Scientists have looked at over 400 genes to see if they’re connected to a person’s weight, but only a handful actually make a big difference. These genes can affect how hungry you feel, how quickly you feel full, the way your body uses energy, the types of food you crave, where fat is stored on your body, and whether you eat more when you’re stressed.

It’s more likely that genes are involved in your weight if:

  • You’ve tried eating less and working out a lot for several months but haven’t lost weight.
  • You’ve been heavier than average since you were young.
  • Both your parents and many other family members are heavier than average or very overweight.
Hormones

Our bodies use special chemicals called hormones to control our weight. When these hormones change, our weight can too. Insulin is a key hormone that helps manage our blood sugar and decides if we should store fat or use it for energy.

If we have too much insulin all the time, our bodies might stop responding to it properly. This can make our blood sugar go up, which can lead to gaining weight and getting type 2 diabetes. If this happens for a long time, we might become very overweight and have other health problems.

Leptin is made by fat cells and tells our brain when we’ve eaten enough. If we have the right amount of leptin, we won’t eat too much. But if we eat a lot of unhealthy fats and processed food, we might get leptin resistance. This means our brain won’t know we’re full, and we’ll keep eating.

Ghrelin is known as the “hunger hormone” because it tells our brain it’s time to eat. People who are overweight might have too much or too little ghrelin.

There are other hormones like estrogen, cortisol, neuropeptide Y (NPY), and glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) that also affect our weight. GLP-1 is getting a lot of attention lately because of a new treatment called semaglutide.

Treatment can be beneficial

Studies have found that people who are much heavier than what is considered healthy may not make a hormone called GLP-1 as well as those who are at a healthy weight. GLP-1 helps control blood sugar by telling the body to release insulin when we eat. A medicine called Semaglutide works like GLP-1 and can make you feel less hungry by acting on certain areas in your brain and gut. It also makes food stay in your stomach longer, so you feel full for a longer time. This can help some people eat less and start to have better eating habits.

Semaglutide can be a good option for losing weight if diet and exercise alone don’t work. Since hormones have a big impact on our weight, sometimes we need medicine to help. Just like we wouldn’t judge someone for taking medicine for depression, which is also caused by hormones, we shouldn’t think differently about medicine for weight control. It’s not cheating; it’s treating a health issue.

Weight-loss drugs might be just what you need. They can help you balance your hormones and get healthier if you’re overweight or obese. Think of Semaglutide as a helping hand for the parts of weight control that are out of your hands.

If you’re interested in trying out weight control medicine, check out Ellie MD. There, you can take a quiz to see if you can get these medicines. A doctor will meet with you online to see if you’re a good fit. If you are, they’ll get you the medicine without any hidden costs or fees. And don’t worry, it’s all private and the medicine will come straight to your home.

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