This is a huge topic and one which I am not going to attempt to cover completely in one article.  In this blog I’ll start by outlining a few of the more common causes of weight gain I see in my clinic.

Many of my clients come to me as they’re finding they can’t control their weight as easily as they used to.  They’ve reached their mid 40’s (or 50’s, 60’s etc!) and find that when the weight starts to creep on cutting back on sugar or increasing exercise doesn’t have the same impact as before.  That is, the old tricks just don’t cut it anymore!  Here is an introduction to a few of the main causes of weight gain I see in clinic.

Insulin resistance

The hormone insulin plays a number of roles in our body including regulating blood sugar levels.  Insulin resistance is when cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond well to insulin and can’t easily move the glucose from your blood into your cells.   Excess glucose is stored as fat, potentially leading to weight gain.  Physical activity and eating a healthy diet can help your body respond better to insulin.

Decrease in muscle mass

As we age our muscle mass decreases.  Lower muscle mass means you require less fuel, if you continue to eat the same amount without working to maintain your muscle mass your weight may increase.

Eating enough protein

If your diet doesn’t include adequate protein, hunger increases and your appetite may increase.  People often reach for high carbohydrate low protein snacks, increasing blood sugar levels and providing short term relief to the hunger.  If this results in overeating for a prolonged period it can lead to weight gain.


Some medications are known to have weight gain as a potential side effect.  Medications are necessary to manage health conditions and shouldn’t be adjusted without consulting your prescribing doctor.  Adjusting diet and lifestyle to help manage health conditions maybe helpful for some people.

Gut health – your microbiome

We are learning a lot about our gut health and the impact of our microbiome, including a 2021 study that showed our gut microbiome can help or cause resistance to weight loss.  Changing your diet can lead to changes in the composition of the bacteria in your gut, potentially changing to one more favourable to weight loss.

Unhealthy lifestyle habits

Alcohol intake, constant grazing, diet too high in sugar/ processed foods/carbohydrate….the list goes on.

We all know these lead to weight gain but it has to be mentioned as it’s a great first step to take when you are trying to manage your weight!

I’ll be delving more into these in future articles, follow me on Instagram or facebook if your keen to learn more.