You eat healthy and low fat, you have started to eat smaller meals and you do a lot of sports, but still, you are not loosing more weight and your fat % stays the same? A typical situation for many women. The reason might be that since you have been eating too little for a longer time, your body is in starvation mode or you might have a chronic inflammation in your body which makes it even more difficult to burn fat.
How many calories you burn in a day depends of course on your activity levels, on your weight and also on how much sports you do. But a safe basic guideline is for women to eat a minimum of 1800 kcal and for men 2100 kcal per day*. If you eat regularly less than that amount the following happens:
Your body thinks that you are somewhere where is no food available and it wants to help you to stay alive. So it slows down your metabolism and tries to keep all the fat so that you don't loose any unnecessary energy. (*According to World Health Organisation a diet under 1800 kcal for women and 2100 kcal for men is classified as a "starvation diet")
So you are trying to lose weight but actually, you are just making it more difficult for yourself by slowing down your metabolism. The longer you eat too little, the more difficult it will be to burn fat in the future.
If you have no clue how many calories you are consuming each day, I recommend trying My Fitness Pal calorie counter. Usually, I don't recommend calculating your calories because you can get great results without it, but if your weight gets stuck and you don't manage to get that last belly fat away, then it is a good idea to track your calories. Some people might be eating too much while others might be eating way too little.
If you notice that you only eat let's say 1200 kcal per day, it is good to increase your calories slowly, by adding 200 kcal per week until you reach the minimum of 1800 kcal. Create the calorie deficit with exercise, not with diet!
An example: Your calorie requirement per day is 1900 kcal and you do a workout that burns 300 kcal, so in total, you burn 2200 kcal on that day. By eating 1800 kcal, is the calorie deficit 400 kcal which is a safe range for weight loss. Never eat less than 1800 calories (women) / 2100 calories (men) - this way you make sure your metabolism will work effectively.
Another reason that makes burning body fat more difficult might be a chronic inflammation you have in your body. Inflammation is not a disease and you cannot see it in blood tests. Stress, wrong diet and too much exercise that is not in balance all cause inflammation. You can get results way faster and the results will stay if you treat inflammation away from your body first. You can read more about chronic inflammation in here.
To treat inflammation, you should take big doses of high-quality omega 3 supplements, C-vitamin several times a day (for example acerola or camu camu powder), also eat a lot of curcumin and ginger. Always after your exercise, remember to eat an after workout meal or snack to stop the stress reaction that the workout has caused in your body. Add some c-vitamin and for example maca or shaga into your after workout shakes together with carbohydrates and protein.
If you are struggling with weight loss and you think you might have an inflammation in your body, treat the inflammation away first. Then start to track your calories and macros and make sure you are eating a minimum of 1800 kcal and create the deficit with exercise! It is good to do resistance training since muscles burn more calories than fat. Also, an H.I.I.T training is a great method to boost your metabolism and burn fat. And remember, give your body 3-4 weeks time to adjust. If you don't get any results in that time, then you can do some small changes.
Read also the post ABOUT MACROS AND WHY CALORIE COUNTING ALONE DOES NOT WORK
Do you have any questions? Please don't hesitate to write a comment or email me, I'm happy to reply :)
Have a great day!
Check also my Personal Training services and Diet Coaching HERE if you want to get more individual guidance to reach your goals :)