If you are a meticulous dieter, you don’t want to be surprised by sudden weight gain. It often comes as a nasty shock and disappointment when you step on the scale, expecting a reduction in pounds, only to discover that you have gained a couple more. While overeating and lack of exercise are often blamed as causes of sudden weight gain, it is equally important to consider other causes. For instance, certain phases in life could lead to sudden weight gain due to dietary adjustments needed to meet the demands and stresses of these periods. Some of these phases include puberty, marriage, pregnancy, middle age and menopause. An increase in food intake is required by the body to cope with growth and development, stress, and in the case of pregnancy, the growth of new life inside the womb and the preparation for birth. If you are prone to having sudden weight gain, then you should know what might cause it. By knowing the cause, you can take steps to prevent it.
Recognize the Dietary Patterns
Be aware of dietary patterns during specific life phases. During puberty and as you grow older, an increase in food intake will help your body to adjust to the stresses and demands that are imposed upon it. Always allot time for exercise to ensure the burning of excess calories.
Eat Healthy Foods after Pregnancy
After pregnancy, you should eat more healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables, fish, lean meats and whole grains. Your postpartum body has the tendency to accumulate excess calories as though you were still pregnant. Exercise will not only help you lose weight, but also prevent unwanted weight gain.
Monitor What You Eat
As you age, especially if you are a woman in the menopausal stage, you become more prone to sudden weight gain as your body’s metabolism begins to slow down. Therefore, you should eat more healthy foods and be physically active more often. It may also be necessary to keep a food diary to monitor your intake of food.
Seek Medical Treatment
There are also cases in which sudden weight gain cannot be explained by changes in eating and exercise habits. In these cases, it may be necessary to seek medical consultation to check for any diseases. One good example of a medical condition that is most often mistaken for weight gain due to increased food intake is edema. Edema–or rapid fluid buildup in the body–is a sign of serious diseases such as kidney disease or heart failure. Sudden weight gain may also be indicative of hypothyroidism. A decrease in thyroid hormone interferes with the metabolic processes that burn calories.
If you are taking certain drugs, you should also inquire from your doctor if sudden weight gain is an expected side effect, and ask for ways to deal with it. Some drugs that may cause sudden weight gain include beta-blockers for heart conditions, insulin for diabetics, corticosteroids for asthma and arthritis, and antidepressants for psychiatric problems.