Weight loss has become a sticky subject of confusion, conflicting information and myths. Before you know it, you’re on the crash-course diet from hell and getting no-where! Sustainable weight loss is not a fad diet or program, it’s a lifestyle. With these 20 proven weight loss tips, you can lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks. Best of all, you will set yourself up for continued progress every week!
1. The Golden Rule: Calories In vs. Calories Out
This simple fact simply cannot be overruled – to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.
Use tools to help track and measure your daily intake then slowly taper down. Start with 500kcal steps or lower until you observe a consistent weekly loss.
Never go dangerously low, eating much below 1200-1600 can stall your progress and harm your health!
2. Set Attainable Goals And Track Your Progress
Achieving each goal will help spur you on, so be realistic and start small. Here is an example of an easily achievable goal progression:
– Lose weight each week
– Lose 1-3 pounds per week
– Lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks
– Fit into size 30 jeans!
3. Consider Skipping Breakfast
Breakfast is commonly considered the most important meal of the day, however, it is not so when it comes to weight loss.
Intermittent fasting can be a useful fat-loss tool. Restrict yourself to a smaller eating window by skipping breakfast and only eating from 12-8pm. You will reduce your daily calorie intake without restricting your lunch and dinner!
4. Drink More Water (Especially Before Meals)
Drinking water an hour before eating has two proven benefits for weight loss:
- 24-30% boost in metabolism for 1-1.5 hours after intake
- Increased chance of consuming less calories which further supports weight loss
5. Make Coffee Your New Best Friend
Coffee has received a bad reputation in the past, however, it should be known that quality coffee is rich in antioxidants and beneficial to weight loss.
The caffeine content will boost your body’s metabolism by up to 10%, leading to a 10-29% increase in fat burning power. Take it black, with no added sugar!
6. Make Green Tea Your Second Best Friend
Green tea provides a milder dose of caffeine but it is abundant in wonderful catechins. These antioxidants will work with the caffeine in a perfect fat burning harmony!
7. Always Check For Added Sugar
But even if you do not add it yourself, you should check the ingredients of your sauces or packaged foods. Even self-proclaimed health foods can be riddled with added sugar!
8. Cut Out Simple Carbohydrates
Simple/refined carbohydrates are quickly absorbed, spiking your blood sugar and insulin levels in the process. As a result, you will feel hunger and cravings come back again in no time!
Avoid all sugar or refined grains by avoiding the following foods:
- Cookies, candy and sweets
- Packaged cereals
- White bread and rice
9. Scale Down Your Portion Sizes
It pays to become aware of how much you are eating, exercise portion control and slowly scale it down.
Even small reductions of 10-20% are often enough to tip the balance and trigger weight loss. Try measuring your portions more carefully and don’t underestimate the power of using smaller bowls!
10. Keep Healthy Food On Standby for Stacks
The power of temptation is mighty, so why not remove it completely?
Only keep healthy snacks within reach, then you won’t be able to binge on junk food! Here are some healthy ideas to stock your cupboard:
- Whole fruit
- Handful of nuts
- Hard boiled eggs
11. Spice Up Your Life
Breathe new life into your dishes and reinforce your weight loss efforts with the power of cayenne pepper! Capsaicin from cayenne pepper and other spicy foods helps to ramp up metabolism and decrease appetite.
12. Top Up Your Protein Intake
Protein rich foods not only keep you fuller for longer but burn more energy during digestion. Studies have shown that swapping calories for whey protein supplements can boost weight loss whilst increasing lean muscle!
Alternatively, here are a number of protein-rich food sources:
- Lean beef
- Skinless chicken breasts
- Low-fat yogurt
13. Balance Your Diet With Complex Carbs
Consuming complex carbs will produce a sustained energy release and keep blood sugar levels manageable. You can easily keep hunger and cravings at bay with these nutrient dense complex carbs:
- Brown rice
- Beans and legumes
14. Forget About Fast Food
Not matter how healthy it may claim to be, fast food is almost always laden with heart-clogging trans fats, excessive sugar and salt.
Worse yet, these meals are high in calories whilst low in nutritional value, making them a terrible choice for fuel. Before you know it, you will have broken the cardinal rule of calories in vs. calories out!
15. Watch Out for “Hidden Calories”
There’s no need to completely forgo your favorite condiments, just make sure you are aware of their true caloric impact. It’s easy to go overboard and negate much of your hard work!
Go easy with the following condiments and toppings, they are surprisingly heavy in calories:
- Salad dressing
16. Choose Low-Medium GI Foods
High GI foods sources cause sugar levels to shoot up, the resultant spike in insulin will actually encourage dreaded fat storage!
Check out the GI scale and choose low-medium GI foods. Your insulin levels will remain under control, you will feel fuller for longer and find it easier to lose weight!
17. Opt For Weight Training Over Cardio
Weight training burns a significant amount of calories, keeping you strong, fit and healthy in the process. It’s more effective than cardio for body recomposition as it helps preserve essential muscle mass whilst you lose weight.
Studies have also shown a significant increase in metabolic rate both during and after your workout, further supporting your weight loss efforts!
Choose a routine that uses compound lifts such as Presses, Squats and Deadlifts. These exercises recruit the largest amount of muscles per movement, ideal for maintaining lean muscle mass and trimming body fat.
18. Go Walking or Cycling
Consistent small actions soon add up to big changes. For this reason, why not choose to walk or cycle whenever you can? You will burn more calories as you go about your day without the need for further diet restrictions.
You can burn more calories as you go about your day, without any further diet restriction. If you’re physically able there is no excuse, take the stairs over escalators and lifts!
19. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is highly underrated for weight loss. Forget about the 6-hour minimum claim, many of us require 8-9 hours to operate at peak efficiency.
Both duration and quality of sleep will have a great influence on hormones that control body composition. In fact, poor sleep has shown worrying links to obesity, increasing the risk in adults by 55%!
20. Be Careful Of Liquid Calories!
We all know alcohol dehydrates and damages our liver and kidneys. But it can also thwart weight loss efforts as an unexpected source of calories.
You may be surprised to know a beer can equate to 150kcal, 125kcal for a glass of red wine and a whopping 400Kcal for a single sweet Piña Colada! Instead, try sticking to tonic water with a slice of lime, your body will thank you!
So there you have the 20 simple lifestyle tips that will support you in achieving healthy weight loss. Adopt as many as you can and you will easily lose 10 pounds or more in 3 weeks!
Featured photo credit: Lecic via shutterstock.com