Sometimes it can be frustrating when you may not be seeing the change you expect on the number on the scale, especially if you have been making some positive changes for your health for some time. When we step on the scales, the total weight appears – but there is no breakdown of how much is muscle, or fat, or organs or water weight. Two people can weigh the exact same but have very different body compositions!
Keep in mind that sustainable weight loss is often a lot slower than many people would like. Think back to a previous diet you may have tried – one where you lost weight faster than right now. Was it sustainable? Most likely not!
By making smaller changes to your habits and mindset with the help of a dietitian, you are ensuring that you not only lose weight, but you do not re-gain the weight further down the line.
Here is a list of different changes you may notice in your health and wellbeing that are easy to overlook at first – but they make all the difference to how we feel and to our quality of life.
Sleep quality and energy levels
Have you noticed an improvement in how you are sleeping? Particularly if you used to struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep in the night, but you are now sleeping through the night more often – that is a fantastic sign of change!
How would you rate your energy levels out of 10, at the start of your journey? Ask yourself this again at the end of each month. You may find that with an improvement in sleep, your energy levels are better sustained throughout the day, and you are no longer suffering from a mid-afternoon slump. Keep a note of all these changes to help reflect how far you have come.
If you were diagnosed with high blood pressure, increased cholesterol readings or high blood sugars, how have they changed over the months?
You may find that your blood biomarkers are returning into a healthy range, which is a fantastic sign to show that your nutrition and lifestyle changes are improving your overall health quality. If you can, try getting a blood test after 3 months of starting your journey with your dietitian, to see what has changed.
Aside from blood biomarkers, perhaps you suffer from gut issues, such as bloating or bowel issues. Have you noticed a change here? Or if you frequently experienced indigestion or acid reflux, has your need to take medication reduced too?
At the beginning, were you finding it difficult to climb up the stairs or were you getting out of breath from a short walk? Have you noticed this has improved?
Have you learnt new and better ways to help manage with your stress levels? Has this contributed to a reduction in your blood pressure too? Finding other ways to cope with stress aside from comfort eating is a huge sign of progress for your health and wellbeing. What are your new go-to ways for managing stress? Maybe it is taking a walk, practicing mindfulness, meditation or taking more time for yourself ?
Remember that when you are eating a healthier and more balanced diet as well as working on improving your relationship with food and are increasing your exercise levels, there are many changes happening internally that you can’t see.
However you choose to monitor progress, know that sustainable changes take time to see if you want long term lasting results. So be more patient and kinder to yourself, use this guide as a reminder to take notice of all the changes you may be making and strive for progress, not perfection.
Share your non-scale signs of progress with your dietitian!
If you don’t have a dietitian and you are ready to start your journey through health, you can book a consultation with one of our dietitians here. Note that we have multiple locations and offer online consultations for those who prefer virtual meetings.