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Losing weight is a challenge in itself. The journey is long and will test your discipline. You will inadvertently do some mistakes along the way.

Some of these mistakes can prove to be detrimental to your weight loss and main even result in weight gain.

We have gathered a list of 12 weight loss mistakes that will jeopardize your progress.

Weight Loss Mistakes

10 Weight Loss Mistakes To Avoid

Losing weight takes a lot of effort and discipline. You have to literally adjust your lifestyle to make a lasting change.

However, this means you will have to sometimes be very boring and do the same things over and over again. Your mind may not be up for it and ultimately it will make you do things that are not good for your weight loss.

Here is a list of 10 weight loss mistakes that we commonly make that end up ruining our overall progress…

Some of them you are aware of and some may be new to you…try to avoid as many of them as possible.

1. Not Sticking to a calorie deficit diet

This may be the cardinal sin when it comes to weight loss. No matter how hard you work out, you will not lose weight if you don’t stick to a calorie-deficit diet.

This is the primary thing that you need to implement if you want to lose weight.

Most of us, me included, actually may have started off with this calorie deficit, but then gradually will start steering away from it.

For me, the biggest challenge is the 5:00 PM snacks. In many families where I’m from, we enjoy the evening tea with family where we have some of the most unhealthy snacks available.

And it doesn’t help if you are a foodie and just want to shove those snacks down your throat as soon as they are in front of you. (read me)

So, navigating this scenario was very tricky for me…and I tried to stick to a low-calorie food that I like.

But every day it is a constant struggle and sometimes I do end up giving in.

Also, throughout the day you may be having some things that you may not be aware of…like having a biscuit or a cookie with your tea or coffee…or maybe adding some sugar to your coffee…

I switched to black tea without sugar. However, since I like it, this switching was not difficult for me…

Try to find ‘your’ easy and stick with it…Your goal should be to cut around 500 calories from your day through your food intake…this can be in many different ways and not always giving up your favorite things.

However, many times despite our best efforts, we cannot stick to the deficit…partly because we don’t know what amount of calories each ingredient has.

Here is a way to get to know the exact calories that a food ingredient has. This will help you to stick with your food choices more easily…

2. Having carbs in the evening

Carbs are a good source of energy. However, they are high in calories and you will need a lot of activities to burn them.

In the evening our physical activities reduce. We return home from work and then relax. We move around the home also less and the amount of calories that we burn also tends to be lesser.

If we have carbs in the evening, then we will not be able to burn them. Also, the thermic effect of carbs is much lesser than the protein.

In other words, the calorie required by the body to digest carbs is much lesser than that of protein.

That is why, if you have carbs in the evening, you tend to store them in the body. As a result, your fat gain may be quicker than you expect.

What can you do then?

Avoid carbs in the evening. You can set up a time after which you will not have carbs in the evening, say 4:00 PM.

Instead, have a decent amount of protein and vegetables in your dinner. This will provide you with good nutrition and will reduce your chances of bloating.

3. Having a lot of fired or oily food

If you are a habitual eater of fried foods and have a lot of oily food, you will have weight gain easily.

Even if you are working out a lot, you will not be able to go into a calorie deficit to reduce your weight.

Actually, fat contains 9 calories per gram which is almost double the number present in protein or carbs. As a result, consuming it in high amounts will result in weight gain.

Here is an experiment done to check the effects of saturated fat on weight gain. This result conclusively states that saturated fat actually resulted in weight gain in the test subjects as compared to the test subjects who were not fed saturated fat.

4. Not following a calorie maintenance diet according to bodyweight

This is one of the easiest ways to mess up when you have lost weight and trying to maintain the same.

Many people will either eat way too less or way too much more than what their body needs.

In either of the cases, your body will end up storing the food as fat. Your body is adaptable. If you eat a very low calorie your body will slow down your metabolism and will try to store the food that you are already intaking.

The result will be an increase in body weight.

Also, if you are eating way too much, your body will end up storing the excess amount of calories in the form of fat, if you are not doing that much of physical activities.

Eat a calorie that is required by your body according to your body weight and age. Here is a calorie calculator that will exactly tell you how many calories you need to maintain your body weight.

5. Focusing only on cardio and not strength training

Cardio is good for weight loss. However, if you focus only on cardio, then it may not be an effective tool to get the body composition that you desire. Although you will lose weight, however, if you want to get a toned body, you may not be able to get that without strength training. Also, with strength training, chances of muscle loss will be lesser and your overall body strength will improve. When you strength train, your body burns the calories for the next 24 hours, causing your body to become a better fat-burning machine. Also, since your body will gain more muscles, it will be able to burn calories more efficiently.

6. Not having clean food

One of the worst things that you can do to jeopardize your weight loss is to continue to indulge in junk food and not have clean food. These kinds of foods actually have a huge amount of calories condensed in a small package. For example, a small burger will have more calories than a huge serving of fresh salad. Also, one more mistake that we often do, is to have salads that are loaded with calories in the form of different condiments. One general rule of thumb is to take your condiments separately when served. This will help you to control the number of condiments that you add to your salad. Also, avoid salads that have boiled noodles or other kinds of high-calorie ingredients. This will keep you within your selected calorie range. If you eat clean food that helps you to increase your metabolism.

7. No cheat meal

This sounds exhausting, isn’t it? However, if you eat too many calories in your cheat meals then your overall weight loss progress will be hampered. For example, if you need to have a calorie deficit of 500 calories a day to lose weight and you end up consuming maybe 1500 calories extra on your cheat day…then you end up destroying 3 days of progress… So should you give up enjoying life? Nope… Instead, try to have it in moderation when you go out… Also, if you see that your weight scale is stuck and your weight is not going down, try to add a little bit more calories to your diet for a week or two. You will see a slight rise in your overall weight, however, your body’s metabolism will get reset. So, when you go back to your actual diet, it will reduce your body weight overall. Here is an excellent video that will explain this concept more clearly.

8. Having more than 2 and a half hours of gap between meals

If you are on a weight loss diet, then you may be consuming a far lesser amount of calories than you used to. Your body will go into a food conservation or storage mode easily if it believes that it is not going to get the food in a timely manner. In other words, if you don’t provide it with food at a regular interval, it will go into a fat storage mode. So, never go without food for more than 2 and a half hours of gap. This will reduce your metabolism and you may end up gaining weight. Instead, have food at regular intervals and this will help you to keep your metabolism level at optimal. You may be able to see sustained weight loss for the number of workouts you are doing.

9. Not Increasing Protein Intake

Protein has a way of keeping you full for the longest amount of time compared to carbs and fat. It stays in your stomach for a long time and keeps you satiated. Also, the thermic effect of food for protein is more. So, you will end up burning more calories, if you intake more protein. When you are working out and dieting, you may end up losing muscle mass along with fat. If you keep your protein intake less, then you may not be able to maintain your body composition. Also, you may get weaker with weight loss. One easier way to maintain your muscle mass is to increase the amount of protein that you are having. It will help you to improve your overall body composition and will also help you to burn calories more efficiently.

10. Not Increasing Vitamin C intake

When you are losing weight, sometimes your skin takes a toll. It can sag a bit (may not happen if you are losing weight in a healthy way and not starving yourself).

Also, the luster of the skin also fades sometimes.

If you take Vitamin C, it will not let these things happen to your skin. Also, it will improve the overall liver function and improve your stomach health.

How can you increase Vitamin C intake?

You can do it with the help of citrus food like lime, sweet lime, oranges, etc. Gooseberries are also a good source of Vitamin C.

You can also use this Vitamin C supplement or you can get natural juices that are extracted from the fruits.

11. Not Taking Advantage Of NEAT

This is not a new concept. Actually, if you are trying to lose weight, you probably already know about NEAT. NEAT is nothing else but non-exercise activity thermogenesis. If that sounds gibberish then simply put, it is the number of calories you burn with non-exercise-related activities. After exercise, most of us have this habit of sitting down and not moving the entire day. The effect is, that we will see much slower progress than we actually would be seeing. Sometimes, to budge the scale, you will have to put in this extra effort and for that, you have to move around more. You can go for an evening walk or a morning walk, or you can do more house chores…etc. Find your ways to incorporate NEAT into your lifestyle. When nothing moves after putting in a lot of effort, often this will help you to move the scale in your favor.


Weight loss is not complicated if you put some basic disciplines in place. However, we often miss out on those and end up hampering our progress.

However, although we can get back on track, however, it will leave a bad taste in your mouth.

Try to avoid the above list of mistakes and you will mostly be on track for your weight loss progress…


Luglio, H. F., Sulistyoningrum, D. C., Apriliana, N. L., Putri, S. E., Larasati, A., Tsani, A. F. A., … & Huriyati, E. (2017). The Effect of Combined Aerobic and Strength Training on a Weight Loss and Metabolic ProfileTopics in Clinical Nutrition32(2), 152-160.

Sacks, Frank M., George A. Bray, Vincent J. Carey, Steven R. Smith, Donna H. Ryan, Stephen D. Anton, Katherine McManus et al. “Comparison of weight-loss diets with different compositions of fat, protein, and carbohydrates.” New England Journal of Medicine 360, no. 9 (2009): 859-873.

Chan, A. C. (1993). Partners in defense, vitamin E and vitamin CCanadian journal of physiology and pharmacology71(9), 725-731.

Carr, A.C. and Maggini, S., 2017. Vitamin C and immune functionNutrients9(11), p.1211.

Lose Weight Mistakes
Madhusree Basu

Madhusree Basu

Author, Admin

Blogger and a fitness enthusiast. She loves running and Yoga and everything in between. She started running to manage her weight and to eat to her heart’s content. A true foodie at heart she shares whatever knowledge she has gained throughout the years about weight management and fitness.

Sourav Sarkar

Sourav Sarkar

Reviewer, Certified Fitness Instructor

Certified fitness trainer and an ex-professional bodybuilder, he has trained more than 500 fitness enthusiasts and has more than 15 years of on-the-job experience.