Losing weight isn’t easy.
At the start of my weight loss journey, like most people, I developed an unhealthy obsession with losing weight by any means.
I tried many fad diets. From keto, water fasting, juicing, slimming tea.. you name it.
I tried everything under the sun but none of it worked longer than 30 days. Why is that?
I discovered that even though those weight loss strategies worked for me within 30 days, they were not sustainable.
I couldn’t keep my weight down longer than 30 days.
And if what you’re doing isn’t sustainable, you won’t successfully lose weight.
In this article, I’ll share with you 3 proven methods you can adopt to lose weight and keep it off for good. But first, what is weight loss?
What Is Weight Loss?
Before you attempt to lose weight you should first understand what it means to “lose weight”.
Firstly, I know you want to lose weight and that’s fine but what you really want to do is: lose body fat.
A reduction in body fat is the best way to lose weight because you don’t want to lose your fluid and muscle mass in the process.
So it’s fat loss that you want, not weight loss.
What is the Difference between Weight Loss and Fat Loss?
Weight loss refers to a reduction of the total body mass, by a mean loss of fluid, body fat or lean mass.
To lose weight would be an unhealthy thing to do. Whereas, fat loss refers to weight loss from fat. That’s a healthier goal to set for yourself.
For your sake, I’ll keep referring to it as “lose weight” but just know, it’s really lose fat.
Reducing your body fat is what losing weight should be about and that’s what I’ll help you do.
As I’ve stated in the title of this article, there’re 3 proven methods for losing weight that you don’t yet know about.
These 3 proven weight loss methods are not complicated and you can adopt one or more of them to lose weight fast, even without exercise.
If you’re interested in knowing what these 3 proven methods are, keep reading.
1. Calorie Deficit
When it comes to weight loss, the first concept you must understand is Calorie Deficit.
This is the only proven method that guarantees weight loss.
According to Wikipedia, “A calorie deficit is any shortage in the amount of calories consumed relative to the amount of calories required for maintenance of current body weight (energy homeostasis).”
To put it simply, a calorie deficit happens when you burn more calories than you consume on an ongoing basis.
This is what you have to do to lose weight and then once you’ve achieved your goal, you can adjust your calories to match your new body weight.
By doing this, you’ll be able to maintain your new bodyweight.
Calorie deficit is the foundation of weight loss.
No matter what you eat, no matter how much you exercise, if you’re not in a calorie deficit (as illustrated in the picture above), you won’t lose weight.
Before I explain further, I think it’s important for you to understand what a calorie is and how you consume calories.
What Is A Calorie?
Calorie is used to measure the energy provided from food.
1 Calorie = The amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1kg of water by 1°c. Calories is usually written in Kcals, which is short for Kilocalories.
So when you see 100kcals, it means 100 calories. source
What you and I eat and drink provides us with energy(calories) in the form of macronutrients (carbohydrate, fat and protein).
That’s primarily where we get energy from and over consumption of calories is what causes weight gain.
When the calories you consume and the calories you burn are matched, you won’t gain weight.
You gain weight because the calories you consume from your foods and drinks are greater than the calories you burn in a 24hr period.
If this happens consistently, you’ll keep gaining weight and eventually become obese.
How Do You Create A Calorie Deficit for Weight Loss?
Now that you’re ready to lose weight, and you understand what a calorie deficit is, it’s time to learn how to create a calorie deficit so you can adopt it to lose weight.
There are 2 ways you can create a calorie deficit: decrease your daily calories or increase your daily activity.
The first one refers to eating less calories from your food and drinks, while the second one refers to increasing your energy expenditure.
If you’re going to choose one method of calorie deficit, choose the first. But it’s better to adopt both methods.
In the beginning of this article I told you about my own personal weight loss struggles.
Another reason I struggled to lose weight was because I didn’t know anything about calories, nutrition or how much I was actually eating.
I can tell you now, if you’re trying to lose weight it’s most likely because you’re consuming too much calories.
You don’t gain weight because you’re not exercising, but because you’re eating excess calories than your body needs daily.
How to Decrease Your Daily Calories for Weight Loss
When you decrease your calories by being mindful of how much calories you’re eating daily, you’ll be able to choose healthier and more filling foods to eat.
The key is to decrease your calories without feeling like you’re eating less food. Is that possible?
It’s absolutely possible to cut 200-400 kcals out of your diet without feeling hungrier.
The first thing to do is use this calorie calculator to determine how much calories your body needs daily for maintenance and then cut 200-400 from that number. Boom! You’re on your weight loss journey.
To use the calorie calculator, input your age, gender, height, weight, and activity level into the calculator.
The calorie calculator is not perfect but it’ll give you an estimate of how much calories you should be eating to be in a calorie deficit for weight loss.
After cutting 200 kcals from your daily maintenance calories, the new number will become your new daily calorie intake for weight loss.
This means that’s how much calories you should eat in a 24hr period.
If you want a weight loss meal plan that’ll make it easy for you to lose weight effortlessly, get my 6 weeks fat loss meal plan.
How to increase your activity for weight loss
There’s a reason why many health professionals promote exercise and being more active.
Even though exercise is not the main stimulus for weight loss, it is still a good tool for staying healthy and it can help you lose weight.
Being more active is a great way to burn more calories and shed excess fat in your body.
Exercises such as weight training can help you build some muscle mass and get you looking leaner and stronger.
The leaner and stronger you become the less body fat you’ll have.
Some ways to increase your activity: follow a daily exercise program, walk to near by places, use the stairs instead of lift, stand more and avoid sitting for long periods, do chores around the house, go for a 20 mins run in the morning on an empty stomach..
This combination of decreasing your calories and increasing your activity are the 2 scientifically proven ways to create a calorie deficit for weight loss.
When you adopt this concept of calorie deficit and stay consistent with your exercise program and meal plan, you’ll lose weight.
2. Intermittent Fasting
Is Intermittent Fasting effective for weight loss?
To determine whether intermittent fasting or (IF) is effective for losing weight, let’s first understand what fasting is.
Fasting is an old age practice, often done for religious reasons. It is a period where you don’t eat for long hours, up to 14 hours or more.
People who fast for religious reasons normally do it with the intention of redirecting their attention back to God.
So when it is done, believers aren’t just fasting from food but they’re fasting from anything that takes up their attention such as social media.
However, when it comes to IF, it’s not done for any spiritual or religious reasons.
People adopt intermittent fasting as a lifestyle because they want to optimise their diet to lose weight or achieve a desired fitness goal.
Intermittent Fasting is a low calorie dieting option and refers to time restricted feeding windows.
This window of calorie restriction can occur within 1 day or 1 week. The 16/8 intermittent fasting method is one of the most popular fasting plan for losing weight. I have personally used this method to successfully lose weight.
Below is a diagram illustrating how you can apply the 16/8 intermittent fasting plan for weight loss.
How To Lose Weight on the 16/8 Intermittent Fasting Plan
During the 16/8 fast, you eat within 8 hours and fast for 16 hours.
You can set your 8 hour window to any time of the day to fit your schedule or use the 2pm-10pm feeding window illustrated in the diagram above.
During this feeding window you have to prioritise eating high quality meals that’ll fill you up till the next day.
In my experience, I prefer to eat just two big meals, no snacks. By doing this I eat mostly whole foods that are high in protein and carbs and I’m still able to be in a calorie deficit.
You can do this fasting method for 2 days or for the whole week. The 16/8 IF plan works by restricting your feeding window down to just 8 hours per day and you fast for the remaining 16 hours.
It’s an aggressive plan that has always worked for me when I want to lose weight fast.
The 16/8 intermittent fasting plan is my favourite way to do IF for weight loss because I still get to eat all my favourite foods within the 8 hours feeding window.
Also, the quality of the food you eat still matters. On the 16/8 fasting plan, you want to stick to eating whole foods and mostly healthy foods.
There’s no point in eating junk foods because you can easily overeat and go above your calories for the day.
One important thing to keep in mind about Intermittent Fasting: like many other fasting strategies, it’ll only help you lose weight by creating a calorie deficit.
If you’re not in a calorie deficit while on the 16/8 intermittent fasting plan, you won’t lose weight.
How To Choose The Right Intermittent Fasting Plan for Weight Loss
- The 16/8 method: This is the only IF plan that I have tried and fully endorse. It is very straightforward and works by restricting your feeding window to only 8 hours while fasting for 16 hours.
- The 5/2 diet: This is a simple plan and works by eating normally for 5 days of the week and restricting your calories to 500-600 for 2 days of the week. I have not tried this plan and do not recommend for weight loss because you won’t be in a calorie deficit most of the time.
- Alternate-Day Fasting: This fasting plan works by fasting for one day and then eating what you want the next day. I do not recommend this fasting plan because it only restricts your calories half the time and will make it harder for you to be in a calorie deficit for weight loss.
Advantages of Intermittent Fasting
- Easy to adhere to: It can be easy to stick to a intermittent fasting plan in the short term if you’re busy or get bored dieting quickly.
- Promotes weight loss: IF works by creating a calorie deficit for weight loss. By the time you break your fast, it’ll be hard to eat too much calories in an 8 hours feeding window.
Disadvantages of Intermittent Fasting
- May promote unhealthy eating: IF may promote unhealthy eating habits such as binge eating. After fasting for long periods some people who lack discipline reward themselves by overeating too many calories.
- May be dangerous if you have health issues: If you have any underlying health issues such as diabetes, consult with your doctor before doing IF for weight loss. And if you take medications for blood pressure or heart disease, you may not do well with IF.
Considering the advantages and disadvantages of IF is why I think you should approach IF as a short term fasting plan for weight loss.
You can do a short term 16/8 fast for 2 weeks while in a calorie deficit. You’ll lose some weight if you do this.
Then, followed by 2 weeks of eating your maintenance calories as a way to maintain your new body weight. Do this for 1-2 months and you’ll be amazed at your weight loss success.
The image below is the outcome I achieved while doing the 16/8 Intermittent Fasting and following the 3 proven methods outlined in this blog post.
How To Approach Intermittent Fasting As A Beginner
If you’re someone who hasn’t fasted before, doing IF for the first time can seem daunting and make you feel uneasy.
First thing you need to know is Intermittent Fasting works and has been proven to provide lots of health benefits, especially weight loss.
The Intermittent Fasting diagram above promotes the 16/8 IF plan because it is the most popular fasting plan and I definitely recommend it.
But, if you feel like fasting for 16 hours will be too much for you, then don’t do it.
Alternatively, you can adjust the plan to suit your lifestyle and instead of fasting for 16 hours, you can fast for 12 or 14 hours.
By doing this, you’ll extend the feeding window while you fast for a shorter period of time.
Lastly, no matter how many hours you fast for or how long your feeding window is, just make sure that you’re in a calorie deficit throughout the day.
Use the calorie deficit section of this article to create a calorie deficit for yourself while intermittent fasting.
Learn How To Eat Better, Lose Weight and Start Working Out To Build Some Muscle Now.
3. Low Sugar Diet
When weight loss is the goal, the quality of foods you eat matters a lot.
It has long been known in the Nutrition industry that if you reduce your sugar intake, you’re likely going to eat less calories and as a result drop body fat because high sugar foods contain lots of calories.
When you eat sugars or any food in excess, you gain weight.
Foods that are high in sugars are all carbohydrates. And when it comes to carbs, it’s better to eat complex carbohydrate rich foods instead of sugars.
Why Are You Addicted To Sugar?
I’m going to be honest, sugar addiction is a real thing.
As someone who used to be addicted to sugar, I ate a lot of unhealthy foods like sweets, fizzy drinks and sodas, pastries, donuts, cakes, ice cream and frozen pizzas.
These foods tasted really sweet because of the excess additional sugar added to them to extend their shelf life.
And in doing that, it makes them really addicting and very hard to give up.
When you eat most processed foods or sweet foods your brain’s reward system, called the mesolimbic dopamine system, gets activated and you’ll want to have more of it.
But you’re going to have to apply self-discipline and give up sweet foods or limit them in your diet because they’re unhealthy and contribute to your weight gain.
What Foods Can You Eat On The Low Sugar Diet?
In general, you want to avoid mostly refined carbohydrates and processed foods.
Eat whole foods because they’re generally low in sugars.
Whole foods are foods that are unprocessed on minimally processed and they contain natural sugars and fibre for regulating your blood sugar.
Below are a list of foods you can eat on the low sugar diet if you want to lose weight.
Foods You Can Eat On Low Sugar Diet
- Protein: Lean meats, Chicken, Seafood, Eggs, Seeds, Soy products.
- Fruits: Apples, Oranges, Kiwis, and all fresh whole fruits. (avoid eating: Parsnips, melon).
- Vegetables: Broccoli, Cabbage, Bok choy, Celery, Sweet potatoes, Cooked carrots, Asparagus, Cucumber, Lettuce, Peppers, Spinach, Tomatoes, and all dark green, red and orange vegetables.
- Grains: Old fashioned Oats, Sweet corn, Brown spaghetti, Brown rice, Quinoa, Buckwheat, Barley, and all whole grains.
- Diary: Whole milk, Cottage cheese, Plain yogurt and Greek-style yogurt, Kefir, Cheese.
- Beans and Legumes
- Herbs and Spices
- Oils (I prefer: olive oil, avocado oil).
Foods You Can’t Eat On Low Sugar Diet
- Refined carbs: Frozen pizzas, Pastries, Cakes, Biscuits, White carbs(white flour, white bread, white paste).
- Sugary drinks: Soda, Fizzy drinks, Starbucks beverages and sweetened coffee, Ready made juices and fruit juices, Energy drinks, Sweetened smoothies, Flavoured yogurt.
- Breakfast cereals (swap to low sugar cereals like Wholegrain cereals, porridge oats).
- Snacks, Candy and Chocolate bars: Crisps, Chips, Potato chips, Salted nuts, Sweet popcorn, Pretzels, Protein bars (check the label).
- Ready-made Soups and Sauces: Ketchup, Mayonnaise.
- Alcohol and Beer, in excess
Checking Food Labels For Sugars
Eating from the food list above will help you lower your sugar intake if you stick to just eating those foods daily.
But let’s be honest, you might want to indulge in something sweet sometimes. I completely understand.
But before you do, make sure to look out for sugars on food labels if you decide to eat foods that are not on the list of foods I mentioned above.
Start by reading the nutritional panel section at the back of the food.
Look in the “carbohydrate” section, these are the numbers to look out for:
- High in sugar: 22.5g or more of total sugar per 100g
- Low in sugar: 5g or less of total sugar per 100g
Try as best as you can to eat foods with 5g of sugar or less. Eating foods higher in sugar, above 20g will break your low sugar diet and make it ineffective for your goals.
Below is the list of names given to sugars by manufacturers.
Use it to identity which foods are too high in sugar by reading the ingredients list at the back of the food you’re buying.
Then swap it out with foods with less sugars and try to limit the amount of sugar you eat.
- fruit juice
- hydrolysed starch
- invert sugar
- corn syrup
Advantages of Low Sugar Diet
- Weight loss: If you eat a low sugar diet while in a calorie deficit, you will lose weight.
- Good for your health: By eating a low sugar diet, your risk of cardiovascular diseases such as stroke, heart disease and other diseases like diabetes goes down.
This is because the less sugar you eat, while also eating in moderation, the less obese you’ll be.
Obesity is the cause of many preventable diseases mentioned above.
- Eat more whole foods: While on the low sugar diet, you’ll naturally eat more whole foods that contain an abundance of nutrients.
This will allow you to reap many health benefits such as satiety, eating more protein, eating a balanced diet, fresh fruits and vegetables, and getting all essential micronutrients.
Disadvantages of Low Sugar Diet
- Can be tedious: Starting the low sugar for the first time can seem like work. You can start to worry about where to find the perfect recipes and how to spot sugars of food labels.
But if you want to make it easier try to eat from the food list mentioned earlier in this blog post.
And lucky for you, you don’t have to worry about what to eat, try this Baked sweet potato meal prep, it’s perfect for a low sugar diet.
BONUS: How to lose weight at home
How To Lose Weight At Home
As I have already stated, calorie deficit is the foundation of weight loss.
Regardless of what you eat, meal timing or how much you exercise, you won’t lose weight if you’re not in a calorie deficit for weight loss.
This is a scientifically proven fact. No debate.
You can lose weight anywhere. Weight loss is not bound to a location as long as you adopt the concept of calorie deficit.
Can you lose weight at home? Yes you absolutely can.
You can lose weight without going to the gym. And you can lose weight by walking. But relying on just walking alone won’t work for the long term.
To lose weight successfully and sustainably, you’ll have to adopt other strategies like a calorie deficit diet plan and a structured exercise program.
By adopting the strategy of calorie deficit, you can implement a weight loss plan that involves eating healthy, drinking 2-3L of water daily, exercising at home using your body weight and resistance bands, going for long walks or going for morning runs 2-3 times a week.
Here’re some tips for losing weight at home:
- Fix your diet: Diet is 85% responsible for helping you lose weight, while exercise is 15% responsible.
According to PUBMED, it’s okay to adopt short term diet pattern like intermittent fasting because it works well by reducing your meal frequency and putting your body in a fasted state for long periods, which is effective for fat burning.
In my experience, adopting intermittent fasting alongside a good based diet of healthy foods, while in a calorie deficit, is your best bet for losing weight and keeping it off.
- At-Home Exercises with resistance bands: Since we’re still in the middle of a global pandemic, working out at home is a great way to burn excess calories.
There’re plenty of exercises you can do at home to build some muscle, get your heart racing and your body moving.
Here are a few resources for at-home exercises you could be doing:
- Check out Chloe ting on YouTube. Her exercise videos are very helpful and will help you burn calories.
- Check out Chris Heria on Youtube. His no equipment exercise video will get you active and definitely help you burn more calories.
- Check out my Pinterest: It is my personal page dedicated to at-home exercises and food recipes to help you eat, move and live better.
- Walking or Running: Can you lose weight by walking? Yes you absolutely can.
Walking or running is a form of exercise and it’s very effective for burning calories.
While you’re on the go, you can walk to places you normally take transport to, if it’s not that far.
Going for a walk or run is a simple full body exercise. It straightens up your body and improves your balance. A 15-20mins run twice a week will keep you active, energised and refreshed.
Walking a lot more daily will help get your body moving, relax your body, increase the circulation of blood throughout your body.
After doing a light exercise at home, you can cool off by going for a short 5mins walk in your neighbourhood.
- Get 8 hours of quality sleep: Sleep is one of the pillars of good health. Yet, most people ignore getting enough sleep and instead focus on weight loss fads and artificial diet plans that won’t work long term.
The reason why getting 8 hours of quality sleep is important for weight loss is because sleep deprivation may lead to increased appetite.
According to Sleep Foundation, “men who got 4 hours of sleep had increased ghrelin and decreased leptin compared to those who got 10 hours of sleep.
This dysregulation of ghrelin and leptin may lead to increased appetite and diminished feelings of fullness in people who are sleep deprived.”
Getting enough sleep won’t necessarily help you lose weight fast. It’ll improve your overall quality of life, increase your energy, reduce your stress levels and reduce the chances of you gaining excess weight due to you choosing foods that are lower in calories.
- Hydration: Believe it or not, drinking water can help you lose weight. Most people know this but they take it the wrong way by going on a water only diet.
The right way to lose weight with water is to drink more water before, and after eating. Don’t go on a water only diet, it’s not a sustainable weight loss plan.
If you drink around 500ml of water before a meal, you’re going to eat less and feel fuller because your stomach works on expansion.
Drinking water before your meal may lead to you eating less calories, and you’ll feel fuller quickly because your brain will think you’ve eaten enough food.
There’s no scientifically proven recommendation for the exact amount of water you should drink for weight loss.
The general guideline is to make sure water is your main fluid and drink water when you’re thirsty.
Overall, when it comes to weight loss, the saying: “eat less, move more”, still holds true.
Eating less doesn’t necessarily mean you should starve yourself and moving more doesn’t mean you should run yourself to the ground.
For weight loss, having a balance of healthy diet and planned exercise is key. Combine both methods together while in a calorie deficit and you’ll succeed.
Do You Want A Healthy Diet Plan for Weight Loss?
Losing weight can be easy if you have a good diet plan and stick to it till you achieve your goal.
Click the image below if you want to eat healthy and lose weight in less than 6 weeks.
The 3 proven weight loss strategies mentioned in this article applies to how to lose weight in your face, how to lose weight fast and how to lose weight and keep the weight off.
These strategies applies to losing weight on any part of your body because you cannot lose weight on only certain parts of your body, it has to be full body weight loss.
If you’re serious about losing weight, remember, it’s not about how fast you lose weight, it’s about how long you can keep the weight off. Always think long term.
The best thing to do is to make permanent changes to your diet and lifestyle.
If you don’t want to struggle with weight loss your whole life, check out my YouTube Channel, where I share weight loss diet tips and healthy meal prep recipes.
So take these 3 proven methods seriously and start applying it one step at a time, as soon as possible.
Here’s what will happen: you’ll successfully lose weight, keep the weight off and feel a lot better and happier with yourself.
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