The Crazy Reason You Always Come Back to the Same Weight

If you’ve ever tried to change your weight, you know that reaching your goal is just the beginning—maintaining it can be just as tricky. There are hundreds of studies that explore why this might be the case, and some of them point to the idea of a body-weight “set point”. In short, your set point is also known as your “default” weight—the weight you always ping back to after a period of weight loss or gain. It’s believed that, due to a number of factors, your body tries to defend this weight.

It goes like this: If you cut calories and restrict your diet, your metabolism slows in response, and you’re likely to move less to preserve your energy. However, if you start eating more, your metabolic rate and activity levels both increase, so you soon end up returning to your original weight. Frustrating? It can be. Unchangeable? Not if you know the determining factors of your set weight. And according to studies, there are four: genetics, diet, movement, and hormones. Here’s how they all work.

Next up, see six summer diet myths you should stop believing

This story originally appeared on Byrdie UK