Why am I not losing weight even though I ‘eat clean?’

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I’ve been trying to lose 10 pounds of fat for a long time now…AND NOTHING.
I exercise 5-6 days a week…cardio and weight training the whole shebang; all together I work out for about 90 minutes-2 hours each day.
I eat clean, too!
Boiled eggs, whole wheat toast for breakfast. Sautéed shrimp with maybe some avocados, tomatoes hot sauce and feta cheese for lunch, a protein shake after or before the gym, a snack, rice, couscous or potatoes with chicken, fish or sometimes pork chops with all kinds if greens for dinner, a light snack before bed—green smoothie or some nuts.

Well, I can’t seem to be able to lose the fat! What am I doing wrong?

P.S. I take CLA, fish oil and l-carnatine and something called somatonin (RTN) for supplement. -Marley



Your food choices sound wholesome for the most part, though fruit & milk seem absent.  The majority of your calories are consumed toward afternoon/evening.  After looking at your portions of fats & starch, I’d recommend shifting your PM snack to morning.  Remember, if you are not losing weight, then you need to eat less calories and increase your activity to burn more calories, it is as simple as that. Keep up the good work! – Debbie J., MS, RD

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Posted on August 29, 2013, in Ask Our Dietitian, Health, Helpful, Nutrition, Weight Loss and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Hey There Blog,
    Neat Post, Lets say i consume 1800 calories a day. I burn 1300. I weigh 150 and am 13 years old 5 foot 4 inches. Will i lose weight even though i dont lose all 1800 calories? I want to lose thigh, chest, hip, and stomach fat.
    All the Best

    • Debbie J., MS, RD

      Yes you should lose weight on 1800 calories! You are burning MORE than 1300 Calories per day, as your resting metabolic rate (what you burn without ANY motion) is around 1500-1700 per day. Add 16 hours of daily teenager activity, even without exercise, and you’re at 1900-2100 per day. So in the end, you do have a caloric deficit that is enough to promote weight loss. Don’t decrease your intake or you will potentially impair muscle and development!

      Thirteen is young, so expect continued growth in height through your teen years. Staying at the same weight as you get taller will lean your appearance. Focus on the healthy habits of eating right and regular physical activity to keep you strong & fit regardless of size.

  2. I am a type 2 diabetic in my late 60s. I go to the gym 6 days a week. I do 1/2 hour doing a fast walk on the tread mill, 10 minutes on the crunch machine, 10 minutes on the back machine and 10 minutes on the chest machine. What else should I be doing to improve my body? My A1C is 6.1 I have been a diabetic for 28 years.



  3. calories in vs calories out!

  4. are you drinking lots of water??…….

  5. Courtney Burgess

    I’ve been working out consistently for a year, variety of weight training and cardio. Over the last four months I’ve noticed that I have an increased appetite and cravings for sugary snacks. I’ve been battling with my diet for awhile but now it seems to have really gotten difficult to deal with. Any advice?

    • Debbie J., MS, RD

      Please check out our relevant article titled “Preventing the Diet Killer… Insatiable Cravings!” from July. It’s chock-full of good ideas. My best sugar avoidance strategy is to brush teeth, mouthwash or suck on a strong mint. Keeping your palate fresh and clean means you’ll be less inclined to ruin it.

      I’ve answered a similar question with:
      Cravings are usually a calling for something your body needs. In your case it may just be pure calories or glucose. Eating a substantial breakfast and lunch may help prevent any weak times in the afternoon. Be sure to include lean protein, complex carbohydrates and fresh produce at each meal, plus milk twice a day, to ensure you’re getting enough energy.

  6. u need to eat less carb more vegie and protein, no smotthies or fruit at night,just lean meat and water

  7. I worked out 5-6 days per week for the last 2 months, mostly on weights with some cardio for a total1 hour each day. I have not lost weight, nor do my clothes fit any looser. I do feel stronger and I notice that my legs are tighter. However, my midsection is just as bad as it was before. What do I need to do differently? I am 43, have 5 children, and could stand to lose2-3 dress sizes.

    • Debbie J., MS, RD

      The answer may be in what you’re not saying. What you are eating and drinking can be the difference between success and maintenance. A single smoothie packing 300 Calories can enough to negate an entire workout, depending on your weight and level of intensity. Any extra intake, such as finishing off kids’ uneaten food, adds up. Look for unnecessary sugar or fat in your diet that can be omitted. Keep up the workouts!

  8. Did you know that 80% of weight loss is determined by our diet, when you eat clean, you know to eat every two to three hours to fuel a powerful, efficient, machine-like metabolism. Fuel your body with lean proteins, complex carbs, whole grains, fruit and plenty of vegetables .Don’t sabotage your efforts eating high-fat, starchy, sugary, empty-calorie foods.

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