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The Weight Loss Dilemma

July 16, 2019 9:00 am

Weight Loss

What are common reasons for not losing weight?

  1. Overeating
  2. Sedentary behavior (Lack of physical activity)
  3. Weight loss plateau

Even with a balanced diet consisting of the best healthy recipes in the Philippines , some people tend to have a difficult time with weight loss. Although each individual case is relative, inducing weight loss is simply a battle between energy surplus and energy deficit. Below are some common reasons why people struggle to lose weight and recommendation on how to overcome the weight loss dilemma.



Eating too much food more than what is needed for day-to-day activities creates an energy surplus rather than an energy deficit which is needed in weight loss. The excess energy, when left unused, will be stored by your body as an energy reserve in form of fat which would lead to weight gain.

Quality of food taken in is as important as the quantity of food consumed. Frequent consumption of high fat containing foods greatly contribute to increasing your weight.

However, too much restriction from eating food is also not recommended. A Healthy weight loss diet is all about moderation (portion control), variety (take from each food group), and balance (taking the right amount from each food group). Following DOST-FNRI’s Pinggang Pinoy® would help prevent weight gain.

Sedentary Behavior (Lack of Physical Activity)

Sedentary Behavior

Continuous excessive food intake coupled with physical inactivity creates an energy surplus. Adding an exercise regimen to your day-to-day activities will help create an energy deficit as exercise burns more calories by building up your muscles. More so it can improve your mood, prolong and improve quality of life, prevent weight gain due to fats, keep the body in good shape and improves stamina.

Thus, it is recommended by the Philippine Association for the Study of Overweight and Obesity (PASOO)to do a day-to day activities habitually and regularly for improving metabolic efficiency, 10 minutes at a time for 30 minutes a day and at least 5 days a week.

The Filipino Pyramid Activity Guide

Weight Loss Plateau

Weight Loss Plateau

Reaching weight loss plateau is normal. This happens when your body’s metabolism has already adapted to the energy deficit you have created from restricting calories and increasing energy expenditure through exercise. It is a point wherein energy intake and expenditure has been naturally balanced out by the body as its natural defense mechanism to prevent further weight loss.

When weight loss plateau is reached, using the same approach you had in losing weight when you were heavier, would only initially maintain your weight then induce weight gain rapidly compared from your initial phase.

Overcoming weight loss plateau is still possible by doing any of the following:

  1. Further decreasing your caloric intake
  2. Increasing the intensity of exercise
  3. Increasing the duration of exercise
  4. Increasing the frequency of exercise

Key Takeaway

Whether it’s incorporating more exercise in your daily routine or trying out a variety of healthy recipes in the Philippines, your weight loss journey requires a strong commitment to take a healthy lifestyle change. It starts with a decision to take one step forward from wherever you are, whenever, however and whatever you can. Start with small changes that you can and progress as days go by. One day, you will see the results of these small changes you had decided to take.


Dokken, B.B & T.S. Tsao. (2007, Jul). The Physiology of Body Weight Regulation: Are We Too Efficient for Our Own Good? . Diabetes Spectrum; 20(3): 166-170. https://doi.org/10.2337/diaspect.20.3.166

Philippines Association for the Study of Overweight and Obesity. 2000. The Filipino Physical Activity Pyramid Guide.

(N.A).(2018, February). Getting past a weight-loss plateau. Mayoclinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/weight-loss-plateau/art-20044615


Deborah A. Sales, RND is a licensed nutritionist-dietitian handling the Science Communication Section of AJINOMOTO PHILIPPINES CORPORATION’s Public Relations Department. She is a technical expert in food and health and an experienced Culinary Nutrition spokesperson.