If you’re wondering how to lose weight fast but safely, you’re in the right place. This article will present 10 proven ways that are based on scientific theories and research to help you achieve your weight loss goal in a healthy way.
Before we jump into the topic, it’s important that you understand the fundamental of how weight loss works.
Basically, weight loss is about burning more calories than you consume. So, to lose weight, you need a calorie deficit.
One pound of fat contains 3,500 calories. That’s means, to lose one pound of fat you need to decrease your calorie intake by 3500 calories.
But keep in mind that it’s best to lose weight gradually because if you shed pounds too fast, you’ll lose muscle and your metabolism can decrease. In other words, your body will burn fewer calories and may have a more difficult time in maintaining weight loss.
To lose weight safely, aim to lose one pound a week, which means a deficit, on average, of 500 calories per day. This will produce a weight loss of one pound per week, which will make sure that you lose fat but retain your lean muscle tissue.
To begin with, you should know how many calories you need each day as the number of calories required each day varies from person to person. You can use a BMR calculator to see how many calories you need each day.
Once you have that figure, focus on creating a 500 calorie deficit each day by eating 500 fewer calorie or burning it off through exercise. You could also use a combination of the two actions that equals 500 calories. For example, you might choose to eat 200 calories fewer than your daily caloric requirement, and then do a workout that burns another 300 calories to reach your 500 total calorie deficit per day.
How to Lose Weight Fast and Safely
Here are 10 tips that can help you create the daily calorie deficit to reach your weight loss goals.
1. Portion control
Portion control is a great way to begin your weight loss journey. This is because through portion control you will be able to get rid of your addictions for unhealthy foods at odd times.
Researchers from the University of Cambridge looked at 72 studies and found that people consistently consume more food and drink when they are offered larger-sized portions, packages, or tableware than when offered smaller-sized versions.
The data suggested that if larger portions and tableware were eliminated throughout the diet, Americans could save about 527 calories per day – that adds up to more than 3,500 calories a week or one pound.
Picking a smaller plate can help to reduce your portion sizes and in turn, reduce the number of calories you consume.
2. Cut back on sugar
Sugary foods, like cookies, cakes, donuts, and sugar-sweetened beverages, often have a lot of calories but few nutrients. Added sugars in particular increase insulin resistance and can contribute to weight gain in the context of excess calories.
Aim to limit your added sugar intake to 10 percent or less of your daily calories. That’s about 70g of sugar for men and 50g for women, although this will vary depending on the age, body weight and how active they are.
3. Eat slowly
It has been found that eating slowly makes people feel less hungry even with small amounts of food.
According to a study from Kyushu University in Japan, people who take time to chew slowly are less likely to be obese than fast eaters. Researchers also found that, on average, slower eaters had a smaller waist circumference and lower body mass index .
4. Drink more water
Drinking water can help you lose weight in several ways. It helps boost your metabolism, reduces fluid retention, and suppress your appetite.
One study showed that dieters who drank 500 ml of water 30 minutes prior to each meals lost 44% more weight over a 12-week period compared to those who did not .
5. Eat high protein foods
High protein intake has been shown to suppress hunger and increase the amount of calories burned.
In a study of 12 healthy women, those that were fed a greater amount of protein (30% protein, 40% carbohydrate, 30% fat) had higher GLP-1 levels — a hormone that helps reduce appetite — for 24 hours after eating compared to when they consumed a low protein diet (10% protein, 60% carbohydrate, 30% fat) .
In a 2004 study, researchers found that a 20% higher protein intake (i.e. 18% of energy vs 15% of energy during weight maintenance after weight loss) resulted in a 50% lower body weight regain, possibly due to increased satiety and decreased energy efficiency .
6. Opt for a low-carb diet
Studies show that low-carb diets can be an effective way to lose weight. A low-carb diet reduces your hunger, which makes you feel satiated and prevents you from over-eating.
According to a research from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, people who followed a low-carb diet lost more weight than those on a low-fat diet after 6 months, but not after 12 months .
In general, most low-carb diets focus on limiting refined grains and starches, like white bread, pasta, and potatoes, in favor of lean protein, whole grains, non-starchy veggies, and low-glycemic fruits.
7. Get enough fiber
Getting enough fiber is very beneficial in losing weight as it may promote satiety and decrease food intake.
A 2001 review showed that increasing fiber intake helps people feel fuller longer after a meal. Fiber’s effects are more profound in obese people, who eat much fewer calories after increasing their fiber intake .
Additionally, a 2005 review published in the journal “Nutrition” found that increasing fiber intake is associated with a lower body weight and body fat . High-fiber foods include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds.
8. Exercise regularly
When it comes to weight loss, exercise is an important component. It does not just help burn the calories you consume but it also helps to maintain your lean mass. Since muscle burns more calories than fat, you can maintain your desired weight more easily if you exercise regularly.
It’s recommended that adults should try to get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week. These include running, cycling, brisk walking, jogging and swimming.
If you can workout in the morning before breakfast, you can even burn 20% more fat as compared to exercising later in the day.
9. Get enough sleep
Most people need about 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Lack of sleep doesn’t just cause under eye bags but it also can cause increased hunger, poor metabolism, and weight gain.
A study of 12 men observed the effects of sleep deprivation on food intake. When participants were only allowed four hours of sleep, their calorie intake increased by 22%, compared to when they were allowed eight hours of sleep .
Another study, presented at the 2006 American Thoracic Society International Conference, showed that women who slept 5 hours per night were 32% more likely to experience major weight gain and 15% more likely to become obese over the course of the 16-year study, compared to those who slept 7 hours a night .
10. Track your diet
When you track your intake, you will know how many calories you are eating each day so you’ll be able to make adjustments to your diet and physical activity. Numerous studies demonstrate that people who log everything they eat are more likely to lose weight and keep it off.
To assess how much you’re actually eating to maintain your current weight, you can use calorie counter app like MyFitnessPal – it’s free and has a very comprehensive food database. Simply input whatever you eat and the app will calculate your daily calorie intake for you.