Fighting weight gain?

standing on a scaleEven when trying your best to cut portions, stop snacking and be more active, some pounds may seem impossible to lose—or worse, weight keeps creeping up! Uncovering the factors behind your weight gain may help you take control.

Start with a visit to your doctor. It's possible that an underlying health condition or medication you're taking could be the culprit behind your weight gain. Your doctor can help you look at the following:

  • A medical problem. Causes for sudden weight gain can include thyroid problems, heart issues or kidney disease. Your physician can help identify if any of these conditions are present.
  • Medications. Certain medicines, such as antidepressants, may contribute to weight gain.
  • Menopause. The hormonal changes accompanying menopause might make you more likely to gain weight around your abdomen.
  • Aging. Muscle mass diminishes with age, while fat increases. Loss of muscle mass decreases the rate at which your body uses calories, making it more challenging to maintain a healthy weight.
  • Genetics. If your parents or other close relatives carry extra weight, you may be more likely to do the same.
  • Stress. Significant stress factors such as children leaving (or returning) home, divorce, death of a loved one, job loss or other life changes may affect your diet or exercise habits.

No magic formula, just healthy habits
The basics behind effective weight management remain:

  • Move more through daily physical activities suchs as aerobics and resistance training.
  • Eat wisely, choosing more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
  • Seek the company of friends and family who'll support your efforts.