10 Most Common Causes of Weight Gain

Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.

The number of overweight and obese people steadily increases* each year. Weight gain is now a major worldwide problem. The main problem with weight gain is its negative effect on a person’s health. In order to find the best solution to this problem, you need to be aware of the many different causes of weight gain. Take note that it is not always connected to your food intake and physical activity level. There is a possibility that the weight gain you are experiencing is due to an underlying medical condition or any other reason.

Unintentional weight gain is simply when you gain weight without trying to do so. On the other hand, intentional weight gain is when you gain weight because you eat more like when you’re trying to gain muscle mass or increase* weight to reach your ideal weight. Here are the most common causes of weight gain:

Top 10 Causes of Weight Gain

Digestive Causes:
There are many reasons why poor digestion can cause weight gain. If the body is having problems breaking down food, eliminating toxins and absorbing nutrients, the metabolism slows down leading to weight gain. People with digestive problems don’t absorb essential nutrients sufficiently. This includes iron, magnesium, B-vitamins and other nutrients that play a vital role in the process of burning* calories. The common result is fatigue and the accumulation of excess body fat. Toxic build-ups can also cause puffiness, sluggishness and make it difficult to lose* weight. It can also promote the retention of excess water in the body.

Endocrine System Problems:
There is a very close connection between hormones and weight gain. Hormonal imbalances can cause weight gain. There are a number of endocrine disorders that can cause unintentional weight gain such as hypothyroidism and Cushing’s syndrome. Weight gain is the result when the body is not able to utilize the energy put into it through food consumption. Hormones play a very important role in metabolizing food for energy and appetite.

Urinary Problems:
One of the most common causes of weight gain is carrying excess fluids or water retention. This usually occurs when there is something with the body’s ability to eliminate* excess fluids or there are disorders related to the urinary system. If this is the case then medical treatment is necessary to treat* the problem and get rid of the water retention and excess weight.

Certain medications can also cause weight gain and make weight loss* almost impossible. This includes some prescription drugs for treating mood disorders, depression, migraines, high blood pressure and diabetes. Hormone replacement therapy, steroids and oral contraceptives may also cause weight gain in some people. These drugs work differently in causing weight gain. It may be from increasing* the appetite, altering the body’s fat storage process or insulin level changes.

Lack of Sleep:
The body needs quality sleep for optimal functioning. When you don’t get enough sleep, the body experiences physiological stress which alters the way it stores fat and at the same time slows down metabolism. Also, when you’re tired due to lack of sleep, the body has a harder time dealing with stress. This often causes emotional eating or turning to food for comfort or as a coping mechanism. You need around 6-8 hours of sleep every night.

One of the most common causes of weight gain is aging. As you get older, your metabolism slows down and the body burns* fewer calories daily. This means that you should be eating less* as you get older. You should also perform more physical activities like exercise in order to prevent weight gain and help you manage your weight.

Stress is closely connected to weight gain. When you are stressed, your body releases the stress hormone cortisol. Studies indicate that cortisol promotes* the storage of body fat in the abdominal area. Also, stress makes you likely to consume more food as a coping mechanism. You need to learn how to manage stress properly by performing relaxation techniques and regularly taking time off from work.

During menopause, certain hormone levels decrease* in the body of the woman. This can cause changes in body composition and its ability to burn calories. This can also increase* the menopausal woman’s appetite which leads to weight gain. The metabolism also slows down during this stage of a woman’s life making weight loss* difficult.

There are many studies showing that watching several hours of television a day can make you more prone to gaining weight. This is especially the case when you eat in front of the television. Eating while watching TV has been found to significantly increase* the amount of food consumed. It would be much better* to eat in your dining area so that you will be able to completely concentrate on your food. This will help you feel full faster and eat less*.

Lifestyle Factors:
One of the main causes of weight gain is a person’s lifestyle. Alcoholic beverages contain a high amount of calories so even moderate indulgence can lead to weight gain. An inactive lifestyle also makes you more prone to gaining weight. Experts say that a healthy lifestyle is one of the best ways to lose* weight and keep it off.

Treatments for Weight Gain

If there is no clear reason for your weight gain and it is sudden, it would be best to consult your healthcare professional. It is likely that an underlying medical condition is causing the weight gain. Once the problem is treated, weight loss* will naturally follow. If the weight gain is due to food intake and lack of physical activities, there are many treatments to choose from like surgery, exercise or medication.

The Best Way to Lose* Weight Fast

The best weight loss* program incorporates a healthy diet with limited calories and regular exercise. You need to determine how much calories you need every day to maintain your weight. To lose* weight, you just need to eat 300-500 less* calories. Exercise can help you burn more calories daily.

A great way to expedite your weight loss* is by using dietary supplements for weight loss*. These supplements can give you an edge and make losing weight much easier. Most products work by increasing* the metabolism and helping suppress* the appetite. Just remember to research thoroughly to ensure that the product you purchase is effective and free from side effects.