How to Lose Weight Naturally (22 Home Remedies)

Before you go on you should have a simple understanding of the process your body goes through when dropping the pounds. Fat (along with protein and carbohydrates) is stored energy, plain and simple. Calories are the unit that is used to measure the potential energy in said fats, carbs, and proteins. Your body will convert fat to usable energy through a series of chemical processes, and any excess energy (calories) that you don’t need will be stored away. To lose weight, you must expend more energy (or calories) than you take in. When you are using more than you taking in, your body draws on stored fat to convert it to energy, which makes the fat cells shrink. It doesn’t disappear; it simply changes form, like water to steam. While this is the basic process, you also have to take into account genetic and environmental factors. How well the above process takes place does vary from person to person.

1. Cinnamon Tea

Blood sugar has a direct impact on your weight as it affects how hungry and how energetic you are (if you have energy you’re much more likely to exercise!)

If your blood sugar is balanced you are less likely to have a disproportionally large appetite, and your body will be more apt to use fat (energy) rather than storing it.

While debate about its effectiveness drags on, more and more preliminary studies are coming out showing that cinnamon can help manage blood sugar levels, so why not whip up a spicy cinnamon tea?

You will need…
-1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
-1 cinnamon stick
-8 ounces of fresh water

Directions
Place the cinnamon in a mug and cover with 8 ounces of boiling water. Steep for 15 minutes before straining. Drinking 1-2 times a day.

Cinnamon Metabolism Tea

2. Green Tea & Ginger

Green tea has long been debated as a weight loss aid, and more research is needed to confirm or deny how well it works. While some studies have turned up nothing, others have identified three main components in green tea that could help manage weight-caffeine, catechins, and theanine. Caffeine is just an overall boost to your system, and speeds up a number of bodily processes, including metabolism related to weight (technically speaking, metabolism refers to any and all biological processes in a living organism needed to sustain life.)

Catechins are considered anti-oxidant flavonoids, and are superior in green tea rather than black tea due to a difference in processing (black tea is fermented.) While the mechanism is yet to be determined, in vitro and in vivo studies have shown that catechins can help lower the absorption of lipids (fats) via the intestinal track. Theanine is an amino acid in green tea that can encourage the release of dopamine, the chemical that makes you “happy” and relaxed. If you tend to eat due to stress, this may be useful. It also counters the caffeine so you don’t get all jittery. The ginger added to green tea will help improve digestion and add a little flavor-no sugar or milk in this tea!

You will need…
-1/2 inch of fresh ginger root, peeled and finely chopped OR ½ teaspoon ground ginger
-1 teaspoon of green tea
-8 ounces of fresh water
-Raw, organic honey (optional)

Directions
Place green tea and ginger in a strainer or sieve and cover with 8 ounces of boiling water. Steeping green tea for too long can leave it with a bitter taste, so don’t exceed 3-4 minutes. You can stir in a little raw honey if you really need to sweeten it, but avoid milk or sugar at all costs. Drink 1-2 cups daily on an empty stomach.

Green Tea for Weight Loss

3. Rose Petal Water

The benefits of rose petal water are backed more by anecdotal evidence than anything, but that’s no reason to shrug off this mild yet refreshing drink. Rose petals act as a very gentle diuretic. Diuretics encourage your kidneys to put more sodium (salt) into your urine. This excess salt in turn draws water from your blood, decreasing the amount of water in your circulatory system. This is not “permanent” weight loss-just water weight-but the action encourages you to drink more and keep your system flushed clean and hydrated. Staying hydrated, believe it or not, can be hugely beneficial to losing weight.

You will need…
-Handful of fresh or dried rose petals
-Distilled water (roughly 1-2 cups)
-A pot with a tightly fitting lid
Note: Be sure, especially if using fresh rose petals, that they have not been treated with any sort of chemical (insecticides, pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, etc.)

Directions
Place the pot on the stove, put in the rose petals, and add just enough distilled water to completely cover them. If some float to the top it’s not a big deal. Cover the pot with a tightly fitting lid and simmer until the petals lose most of their color, about 15-20 minutes. Strain the liquid into a glass jar and keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 days. Drink about ½-1 cup every morning on an empty stomach.

Rose Water

4. Ginseng

Ginseng is any one of 11 perennial plants with fleshy roots belonging to the genus Panax. While there are different kinds of ginseng, the two that you should use –also the ones that have had the most controlled double-blind studies done on them-are American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) and Asian or Korean ginseng (Panax ginseng.) While widely known as a stimulant to speed up a sluggish metabolism, that description doesn’t do it justice. Ginseng’s greatest quality is that it can help fight fatigue and boost energy as well as mental alertness (in a randomized double-blind study in 2010 290 cancer patients at the Mayo Clinic were given ginseng daily and it was found to fight even the crippling fatigue caused by chemotherapy.) This is huge when it comes to weight loss-without energy, it’s hard to exercise. Without exercise, it’s near impossible to lose weight-at least in a healthy way. In addition to boosting energy, there is tentative evidence that it can help manage blood sugar, which also affects energy levels as well as appetite.

You will need…
-1 teaspoon of chopped American or Korean ginseng
-8 ounces of fresh water
-raw honey/lemon to taste (optional)

Directions
Roughly chop the root and measure out 1 teaspoon per cup of water. Bring water to a boil and then pour over the ginseng, allowing it to steep for 5-9 minutes. Strain, add honey or lemon if you like, and drink 1-2 times daily.

5. Dandelion and Peppermint

Dandelion and peppermint tea is a fabulous drink that will help keep your liver healthy. The liver is an incredible organ. Not only is it the only way to truly detoxify your body, it is also plays a central role in many metabolic processes-a lot of which affect weight. In terms of fat metabolism, the liver is full of cells that break down fats and turn them into usable energy. These cells are also responsible for the flow of bile, which helps breakdown and absorb fats. In the metabolism of carbohydrates, the liver helps keep your blood sugar steady, therefore keeping energy levels up and regulating appetite. The list goes on, but the point is helping your liver helps your weight, as it plays a crucial role in managing fats and their absorption. Dandelion and peppermint both help your liver. Dandelion has hepatoprotection constituents, with hepatoprotection meaning an ability to prevent damage to the liver. Peppermint and dandelion both automatically stimulate the production of bile in the liver, helping with digestion and the absorption of nutrients. Mix these two together, and you have a powerful liver protecting tea!

You will need…
-1 teaspoon of dried dandelion leaves
-1 teaspoon dried peppermint leaves
-8 ounces of boiling water
-Lemon to taste (optional)

Directions
Pour a cup of boiling water over the dandelion and peppermint and steep, covered, for 5-10 minutes. Strain, add lemon to taste if you like, and drink a cup twice daily. You can also make this with fresh dandelion leaves/roots and fresh peppermint, just use a rough handful of the fresh leaves for the amount. If you do use fresh, be absolutely certain that there have been no chemicals applied to them- this is especially important for dandelion. If you use dandelion on a regular basis, I suggest growing your own.

6. Sip on Sage

We live in a hectic world, and most of us are stressed about one thing or another on a daily basis. The thing is, our bodies weren’t made to handle constant stress, and it can have damaging effects on a wide variety of functions-including weight gain/loss. When under stress, the body releases cortisol, a steroid hormone that is part of the fight-or-flight response. Cortisol can effect blood sugar level (therefore appetite), and cause energy to be stored more readily as fat. Neuropeptide Y is a neurochemical that is also related to stress. When released, it causes growth of fat tissue (energy is stored easily as fat around the abdomen) as well as an increase in appetite. One way to fight this underlying stress can be to ingest more sage, which has calming effects on both the body and mind. Making a calming sage tea, or even just adding it in dishes you cook, is one way to help combat your stress levels.

You will need…
-A handful of fresh sage OR 2 teaspoons of dried sage
-8 ounces of boiling water
-Lemon to taste (optional)

Directions
Pour boiling water over sage and steep for 4-5 minutes. Strain, add lemon to taste if you like, and drink 1-2 times daily.

Sage Tea Remedy

7. Chew Gum

Chewing gum is a great way to trick your brain (and your stomach) into thinking it’s getting more than it is. The flavor of the gum reduces appetite and curbs the urge to snack on something unhealthy, and also stimulates the flow of saliva, whose enzymes help break down starches and fats.

You will need…
-1 piece of natural sugar free gum

Directions
When you feel the need to start munching, pop in a piece of gum instead.

8. Have a Routine (and stick to it)

Having a routine is, in my opinion, in the top three most important things you can do to lose weight, right up there with exercise and diet. If you don’t stick to a routine, you won’t see results, and you’ll be discouraged. Several years ago I saw a personal trainer and, after paying a decent sum of money, I figured out that it was the routine of going to see her made the biggest difference. It’s probably the single hardest thing you’ll do when you try to lose weight, but once those habits become hardwired into your brain, things will only get easier.

9. Just Add Water

Staying hydrated is an important aspect of weight loss that people often brush off-you don’t want to gain water weight and feel bloated right? Either that or you hear that you should drink ice cold water to burn more calories. Not exactly. The idea that ice cold water burns more calories because your body tries to “warm it up” first may technically be true, but the effect is miniscule (like 8 calories miniscule.) Rather, you need to be hydrated for your body to run smoothly, and that includes burning fat. It flushes bad stuff through your system, and also helps curb appetite. And don’t fret about water weight-if you are staying hydrated, your body is less likely to retain water since it simply doesn’t have the need to-similar to how eating more can make weight loss easier, within reason. I should also say-DO NOT BUY INTO SPECIALTY WATERS! Get your vitamins through your diet or supplements. Those waters are not better for you-in fact some are so loaded with flavoring and what not they rival soda.

You will need…
-8 ounces of fresh water

Directions
Drink at least 8 cups of fresh water every day.

10. Coconut Oil (as a replacement fat)

In the 1970’s and ‘80’s, saturated fats got shoved into the spotlight as the main cause for obesity. Coconut oil, being a saturated fat, was tossed along with the rest of them. The healthier alternative that we created? Trans-fat. One could say that backfired a wee bit eh? Coconut oil isn’t just any old saturated fat though; it contains unique fats called medium chain triglycerides that help you use energy (aka calories) more efficiently. MCT’s are indeed a saturated fat, but they are not the same as many of the other saturated fats we hear about-those fats are long chain triglycerides. Why does the length matter? Its chemical makeup is what determines how our body processes it and breaks it down. MCT’s are not broken down in the intestines, and therefore do not get stored away immediately as fat. Instead, they absorbed intact and sent right to the liver, where they are used as energy. Now sitting around eating coconut oil isn’t going to make you lose weight, but using it as a replacement fat can be a good choice. In addition to that, just plain coconut oil is an incredible appetite suppressant (it’s almost scary, actually.) Tack on that it can raise energy levels and you are more likely to get out, move around, and exercise.

As far as studies on it go, here are some that I mentioned in The Everyday Roots Book. In 2002 the Journal of Nutrition concluded that it can aid weight loss when used in place of long chain triglycerides. It was also shown to strongly curb appetite and it appeared to increase the burning of calories. In 2003 Obesity Research found that it may help burn calories, probably due to the fact that it boosted energy. In 2010 the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition also found that it could help boost metabolism and reduce appetite.

You will need…
-2 tablespoons of good virgin cold-pressed coconut oil

Directions
Twice a day, take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. You can take it before, during, or after a meal. If you tend to struggle with proportions, I suggest taking it before you eat, or if dessert is your demon, take it right after dinner. In terms of substitution I’ve used it in place of olive oil and love it.

Coconut Oil Helps You Lose Weight

11. Plain Yogurt and Honey

This is an awesome breakfast/snack. It’s one of those “I wouldn’t guess this is good for me!” type foods. The probiotics in yogurt do wonders for the digestive track and maintains a healthy balance of gut flora that optimizes digestion and the breakdown of certain substances (like fat.) When you digestive track is running smoothly, your body is processing things better and it’s not as likely to pack on the pounds. The honey is just a little added (healthy) sweetness to satisfy any cravings you might have. The beautiful thing here is that you really don’t feel like you’re getting shorted any flavor or fullness when you eat it. For optimum weight-loss awesomeness, try low fat yogurt.

Note: There was once a time when certain large companies began to add so much sugar to their yogurt the amounts surpassed those found in sugary breakfast cereal, like Lucky Charms. People were gobbling it up and wondering how it could be so tasty and good for you, when really the image and wholesomeness of yogurt was simply being abused. Read the nutrition label first.

You will need…
-1/2-1 cup of plain (not vanilla) yogurt
-1 tablespoon of organic raw honey, or to taste

Directions
Eat this for a snack or breakfast, adding on the honey for flavor. Feel free to try adding fresh fruit or even oats for a little variety.

Yogurt and Honey

12. Get Enough Sleep

Our body is a cohesive unit, a complex system, not just individual parts. Everything has to be working harmoniously for things to be balanced and correct-like your weight. Studies have shown that even just a little bit of sleep deprivation over the short time frame of 4 nights results in increased insulin resistance, and essentially ages the metabolism 10-20 years in that time frame. The fat cells sensitivity to insulin dropped by 30% to levels usually seen in people who were obese or diabetic. By getting the right amount of sleep, you’re doing more than just resting your body-you’re ensuring that all systems are go, and that you have the best chance possible to succeed at losing weight.

13. Black Pepper and Lemon Juice

This spicy little concoction contains black pepper and lemon juice to create a drink that can help you keep ahead on your weight loss battle. Black pepper contains a naturally occurring chemical compound called piperine, which is responsible for giving it its pungent flavor. Several new studies have shown that piperine can interfere with the genes that control the generation of fat cells, as well as reducing fat levels in the blood stream and enhancing the absorption of nutrients from our foods. Lemon juice can help aid in digestion and give your G.I. track a helping hand when it comes to breaking down foods.

You will need…
-Several sprinkles of freshly ground black pepper
-Juice of half a lemon
-Fresh water

Directions
Mix lemon juice with water and sprinkle in black pepper (about 3-4 turns of the pepper grinder.) Drink once daily after a meal.

Lemon and Black Pepper Drink

14. Bottle Gourd Juice

Bottle gourds are old-world hard-shelled fruits that anecdotal evidence suggests can help you lose weight. People who swear by it find that, due to its high fiber content, it creates a sensation of fullness and curbs appetite. It also has high water content (always a good thing) and has a number of great nutrients. If you do decide to drink bottle gourd juice, do not do so in such a way that you use it to “starve” yourself (see below.) Your body needs all the (good) food and nutrients it needs to maintain a balanced diet, however, it’s a great way to help resist cravings and potential snacking sprees!

You will need…
-1 cup of bottle gourd juice, chilled
-A little lime juice

Directions
When you feel the urge to snack, drink a glass of cold bottle gourd juice with a dash of lime juice added.

15. Eat More (and figure out why you’re eating in the first place)

Deprivation never works. It is a painful struggle that will almost always result in failure. Instead of starving your body of the nutrients it needs to stay healthy, eat “more” good stuff. Break your meals down to 5 or 6 small ones a day to reduce snacking (which is when a good chunk of weight gain takes place for a lot of people) and to prevent your body from storing more fat-which is does when it feels “starved.” Also ask yourself why you’re eating in the first place-we so often eat out of boredom or nerves or stress. Wait until you feel a rumble and let your stomach tell you when it needs to eat.

16. Apple Snacks

An apple a day keeps the weight at bay! While not overflowing with nutrients like other fruits or vegetables, apples still have a number of benefits that can contribute to weight loss. First, they are packed with fiber, which helps curb appetite, so eat one when you feel the urge to snack on some less-desirable foods. Second, they can help regulate blood sugar levels, and therefore help regulate your appetite and energy levels. Third, the pectin in apples can lower cholesterol, and serve as another way to help regulate blood sugar, by slowing the absorption of carbohydrates. Finally, apples are a naturally low-sodium food, which can help prevent excess water retention and water weight.

You will need…
-1-2 fresh apples

Directions
Rinse and slice an apple, and eat one to two daily. Leave the skin on, as that contains a good amount of fiber.

Apples

17. Add in More Asparagus

Pay attention to seasonal fruits and vegetables, and pounce on the asparagus when it comes along. Asparagus is nutrient dense and, like apples, contains a lot of fiber to help curb appetite. It also contains a host of vitamins that work together to metabolize blood glucose, therefore regulate blood sugar. If you find yourself feeling puffy or bloated, asparagus is a mild diuretic that can help reduce bloating and leave you feeling your best. Try eating asparagus steamed on the side of your favorite dishes-this vegetable doesn’t need much to make it taste good

You will need…
-1 bunch of asparagus
-some water

Directions
Wash the asparagus and lightly peel the stems if they are thick. Place in a pan with ½-1 inch of water, and cover with a tightly fitting lid. Turn the heat to medium high and steam for 3 minutes, or until the asparagus is tender and can be pierced easily with a fork.

Asparagus

18. Put Your Fork or Spoon Down Between Bites

Your brain lags behind your stomach by roughly 20 minutes, which ,means that it isn’t the best thing to rely on when it comes to letting your know when you’re full. To avoid over-eating, and thus consuming extra un-needed calories, slow down your eating by putting your fork or spoon down between bites. You might feel a little silly at first, but it can really help when it comes to managing your weight.

19. Snack on Flax

Flax seed has been known to help with digestive ailments for centuries, and this goes hand in hand with weight loss. Flax seeds are high in fiber, as well as mucilage, which helps lower cholesterol. It has also been proven to lower blood sugar levels. With such a high amount of fiber, flax seeds also act as a natural gentle way to regulate bowel movements and help promote healthy gut bacteria, both which work well to help you manage weight. It is important to eat flaxseed ground, as it tends to pass through the digestive track undigested if eaten whole, thus depriving you of its nutritional benefits.

You will need…
-1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed

Directions
Once a day eat a tablespoon of ground flaxseed-sprinkling it over cereal or oatmeal if my personal preference.

20. Milk Thistle

Milk thistle contains active flavonoid compounds collectively known as simirilyn. Simalrilyn helps to protect the liver which is a vital organ when it comes to managing weight and encouraging weight loss. When your liver is bogged down and sluggish, weight loss can be slowed by up to 30%*. The simarilyn in milk thistle can help reverse this. There are several ways to take milk thistle, however I recommend a capsule form (make sure the source is reliable) or as a tincture, since milk thistle does not impart its benefits when steeped in water (such as when made into a tea.)

You will need…
-Milk thistle capsules or tincture

Directions
Follow Directions on the packaging for dosage.

21. Go Ahead, Eat That Chocolate

Remember deprivation hardly works? When you get the urge for a sweet treat, turn to dark chocolate. It will help curb your craving thanks to its insulin-resistance lowering flavonoids. The healthy fats in dark chocolate can also slow the absorption of sugar into your blood stream, preventing “insulin spikes.” Studies have shown that eating some can help put a stop to cravings for sugar, salt, and fat. However, the chocolate must be 70% cocoa, otherwise it has too much milk or sugar added to be beneficial.

You will need…
-70% dark chocolate

Directions
Directly after a meal, eat a piece of dark chocolate roughly the size of your thumb to glean its benefits.

Dark Chcolate

22. Join the Navy… Beans

Beans, beans, the magical fruit, the more you eat the more you…lose weight? Apparently, since the protein in navy beans can take a while to digest, therefore reducing appetite and aiding in weight loss management. The fiber in navy beans can also help lower cholesterol.

You will need…
-1 cup of dried navy beans
-3 cups of water

Directions
Prepare the navy beans by adding 3 cups of fresh water to a pot for each cup of dried beans, so that the liquid level is about 1-2 inches about the beans. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer, partially covering the pot. Skim off any foam that develops, and simmer for 1 to 1 ½ hours until tender. Add to a salad or enjoy as a dish on its own.

When you’re trying to figure out how to lose weight, know that there really is no magic thing that works for everyone. Yes, diet and exercise are vital, but people are different, bodies are different, and you have to take into account things such as genetics, health conditions, gender, and age. You might be glaring at your co-worker chowing down on donuts at the office while you pick at a salad and wonder how they manage to stay so fit when they eat whatever they want-but don’t let this drag you down. The journey is different for everyone, but there is always a way to complete it. And when in doubt, simplify the situation-eat good food, get proper exercise. We’ve turned eating and weight loss into a science that delves into such minuscule things we feel like we aren’t capable of eating right or losing weight without professional help. Assuming you have no outstanding condition that complicates the situation, you can reach your goals on your own! It may be difficult, but hey, that’s where things like these remedies can lend a helping hand.

Weight Loss Tips

-Weight isn’t everything. Muscle does weigh more than fat, and being fit and healthy is more important than being incredibly “thin.” Healthy looks good on you, and don’t forget it!

-Never underestimate stress as a cause of weight gain. The body cannot perform any function, including burning fat for energy, optimally when under stress.

-There are no super-foods. Don’t rely on one thing to help you lose weight-always maintain a balanced diet.

-Don’t eat before bed. Your metabolism slams on the brakes when you go to sleep, so eating at night makes weight gain tough to avoid.

-Get a buddy to make goals that the two of you strive towards. When you lose willpower or motivation, a friend can be all that stands between success and setback.

-Read a book called Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us In by New York Times investigative reporter Michael Moss. Just do it. It will give you something new and tangible to hold onto when you are trying to avoid junk food. At the risk of sounding corny, it actually changed my life.

-Along the lines of the first tip-manage your weight to be healthy, and ultimately, happy. Ignore images of perfect figures. Forget about the silly things society bombards you with, telling you what you should look like. To say that’s easier said than done is the understatement of the century, but do try to keep it in mind. When you are healthy, and happy, you truly glow from the inside out.

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How to Lose Weight Fast: 3 Simple Steps, Based on Science

There are many ways to lose a lot of weight fast.

However, most of them will make you hungry and unsatisfied.

If you don’t have iron willpower, then hunger will cause you to give up on these plans quickly.

The plan outlined here will:

  • Reduce your appetite significantly.
  • Make you lose weight quickly, without hunger.
  • Improve your metabolic health at the same time.

Here is a simple 3-step plan to lose weight fast.

1. Cut Back on Sugars and Starches

The most important part is to cut back on sugars and starches (carbs).

These are the foods that stimulate secretion of insulin the most. If you didn’t know already, insulin is the main fat storage hormone in the body.

When insulin goes down, fat has an easier time getting out of the fat stores and the body starts burning fats instead of carbs.

Another benefit of lowering insulin is that your kidneys shed excess sodium and water out of your body, which reduces bloat and unnecessary water weight (1, 2).

It is not uncommon to lose up to 10 pounds (sometimes more) in the first week of eating this way, both body fat and water weight.

This is a graph from a study comparing low-carb and low-fat diets in overweight/obese women (3).

Weight Loss Graph, Low Carb vs Low Fat

The low-carb group is eating until fullness, while the low-fat group is calorie restricted and hungry.

Cut the carbs, lower your insulin and you will start to eat less calories automatically and without hunger (4).

Put simply, lowering your insulin puts fat loss on “autopilot.

Bottom Line: Removing sugars and starches (carbs) from your diet will lower your insulin levels, kill your appetite and make you lose weight without hunger.

2. Eat Protein, Fat and Vegetables

Each one of your meals should include a protein source, a fat source and low-carb vegetables. Constructing your meals in this way will automatically bring your carb intake into the recommended range of 20-50 grams per day.

Girl Eating Kebab

Protein Sources:

  • Meat – Beef, chicken, pork, lamb, bacon, etc.
  • Fish and Seafood – Salmon, trout, shrimps, lobsters, etc.
  • Eggs – Omega-3 enriched or pastured eggs are best.

The importance of eating plenty of protein can not be overstated.

This has been shown to boost metabolism by 80 to 100 calories per day (5, 6, 7).

High protein diets can also reduce obsessive thoughts about food by 60%, reduce desire for late-night snacking by half, and make you so full that you automatically eat 441 fewer calories per day… just by adding protein to your diet (8, 9).

When it comes to losing weight, protein is the king of nutrients. Period.

Low-Carb Vegetables:

Vegetables

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Swiss Chard
  • Lettuce
  • Cucumber
  • Celery
  • Full list here.

Don’t be afraid to load your plate with these low-carb vegetables. You can eat massive amounts of them without going over 20-50 net carbs per day.

A diet based on meat and vegetables contains all the fiber, vitamins and minerals you need to be healthy. There is no physiological need for grains in the diet.

Butter Curls

Fat Sources:

  • Olive oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Avocado oil
  • Butter
  • Tallow

Eat 2-3 meals per day. If you find yourself hungry in the afternoon, add a 4th meal.

Don’t be afraid of eating fat, trying to do both low-carb AND low-fat at the same time is a recipe for failure. It will make you feel miserable and abandon the plan.

The best cooking fat to use is coconut oil. It is rich in fats called Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs). These fats are more fulfilling than others and can boost metabolism slightly (10, 11).

There is no reason to fear these natural fats, new studies show that saturated fat doesn’t raise your heart disease risk at all (12, 13).

To see how you can assemble your meals, check out this low carb meal plan and this list of low carb recipes.

Bottom Line: Assemble each meal out of a protein source, a fat source and a low-carb vegetable. This will put you into the 20-50 gram carb range and drastically lower your insulin levels.

3. Lift Weights 3 Times Per Week

Dumbbells

You don’t need to exercise to lose weight on this plan, but it is recommended.

The best option is to go to the gym 3-4 times a week. Do a warm up, lift weights, then stretch.

If you’re new to the gym, ask a trainer for some advice.

By lifting weights, you will burn a few calories and prevent your metabolism from slowing down, which is a common side effect of losing weight (14, 15).

Studies on low-carb diets show that you can even gain a bit of muscle while losing significant amounts of body fat (16).

If lifting weights is not an option for you, then doing some easier cardio workouts like running, jogging, swimming or walking will suffice.

Bottom Line: It is best to do some sort of resistance training like weight lifting. If that is not an option, cardio workouts work too.

Optional – Do a “Carb Re-feed” Once Per Week

Overweight Man Eating Cake

You can take one day “off” per week where you eat more carbs. Many people prefer Saturday.

It is important to try to stick to healthier carb sources like oats, rice, quinoa, potatoes, sweet potatoes, fruits, etc.

But only this one higher carb day, if you start doing it more often than once per week then you’re not going to see much success on this plan.

If you must have a cheat meal and eat something unhealthy, then do it on this day.

Be aware that cheat meals or carb refeeds are NOT necessary, but they can up-regulate some fat burning hormones like leptin and thyroid hormones (17, 18).

You will gain some weight during your re-feed day, but most of it will be water weight and you will lose it again in the next 1-2 days.

Bottom Line: Having one day of the week where you eat more carbs is perfectly acceptable, although not necessary.

What About Calories and Portion Control?

Apple And Calculator

It is NOT necessary to count calories as long as you keep the carbs very low and stick to protein, fat and low-carb vegetables.

However, if you really want to, then use this calculator.

Enter your details, then pick the number from either the “Lose Weight” or the “Lose Weight Fast” section – depending on how fast you want to lose.

There are many great tools you can use to track the amount of calories you are eating. Here is a list of 5 calorie counters that are free and easy to use.

The main goal is to keep carbs under 20-50 grams per day and get the rest of your calories from protein and fat.

Bottom Line: It is not necessary to count calories to lose weight on this plan. It is most important to strictly keep your carbs in the 20-50 gram range.

10 Weight Loss Tips to Make Things Easier (and Faster)

Here are 10 more tips to lose weight even faster:

  1. Eat a high-protein breakfast. Eating a high-protein breakfast has been shown to reduce cravings and calorie intake throughout the day (19, 20, 21).
  2. Avoid sugary drinks and fruit juice. These are the most fattening things you can put into your body, and avoiding them can help you lose weight (22, 23).
  3. Drink water a half hour before meals. One study showed that drinking water a half hour before meals increased weight loss by 44% over 3 months (24).
  4. Choose weight loss-friendly foods (see list). Certain foods are very useful for losing fat. Here is a list of the 20 most weight loss-friendly foods on earth.
  5. Eat soluble fiber. Studies show that soluble fibers may reduce fat, especially in the belly area. Fiber supplements like glucomannan can also help (25, 26, 27).
  6. Drink coffee or tea. If you’re a coffee or a tea drinker, then drink as much as you want as the caffeine in them can boost your metabolism by 3-11% (28, 29, 30).
  7. Eat mostly whole, unprocessed foods. Base most of your diet on whole foods. They are healthier, more filling and much less likely to cause overeating.
  8. Eat your food slowly. Fast eaters gain more weight over time. Eating slowly makes you feel more full and boosts weight-reducing hormones (31, 32, 33).
  9. Use smaller plates. Studies show that people automatically eat less when they use smaller plates. Strange, but it works (34).
  10. Get a good night’s sleep, every night. Poor sleep is one of the strongest risk factors for weight gain, so taking care of your sleep is important (35, 36).

Even more tips here: 30 Easy Ways to Lose Weight Naturally (Backed by Science).

Bottom Line: It is most important to stick to the three rules, but there are a few other things you can do to speed things up.

How Fast You Will Lose (and Other Benefits)

Obese vs Thin Woman

You can expect to lose 5-10 pounds of weight (sometimes more) in the first week, then consistent weight loss after that.

I can personally lose 3-4 lbs per week for a few weeks when I do this strictly.

If you’re new to dieting, then things will probably happen quickly. The more weight you have to lose, the faster you will lose it.

For the first few days, you might feel a bit strange. Your body has been burning carbs for all these years, it can take time for it to get used to burning fat instead.

It is called the “low carb flu” and is usually over within a few days. For me it takes 3. Adding some sodium to your diet can help with this, such as dissolving a bouillon cube in a cup of hot water and drinking it.

After that, most people report feeling very good, positive and energetic. At this point you will officially have become a “fat burning beast.”

Despite the decades of anti-fat hysteria, the low-carb diet also improves your health in many other ways:

  • Blood Sugar tends to go way down on low-carb diets (37, 38).
  • Triglycerides tend to go down (39, 40).
  • Small, dense LDL (the bad) Cholesterol goes down (41, 42).
  • HDL (the good) cholesterol goes up (43).
  • Blood pressure improves significantly (44, 45).
  • To top it all off, low-carb diets appear to be easier to follow than low-fat diets.

Bottom Line: You can expect to lose a lot of weight, but it depends on the person how quickly it will happen. Low-carb diets also improve your health in many other ways.

You Don’t Need to Starve Yourself to Lose Weight

If you have a medical condition then talk to your doctor before making changes because this plan can reduce your need for medication.

By reducing carbs and lowering insulin levels, you change the hormonal environment and make your body and brain “want” to lose weight.

This leads to drastically reduced appetite and hunger, eliminating the main reason that most people fail with conventional weight loss methods.

This is proven to make you lose about 2-3 times as much weight as a typical low-fat, calorie restricted diet (46, 47, 48).

Another great benefit for the impatient folks is that the initial drop in water weight can lead to a big difference on the scale as early as the next morning.

Here are a few examples of low-carb meals that are simple, delicious and can be prepared in under 10 minutes: 7 Healthy Low-Carb Meals in 10 Minutes or Less.

On this plan, you can eat good food until fullness and still lose a ton of fat. Welcome to paradise.

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Oh no… here it comes again. “I’m eating less, eating healthier and working out more. I’ve done everything right, but it’s still not working for me. Why am I not losing weight???

I hear it so often that it’s beginning to haunt my dreams. Tons of people who are consistently failing to lose weight despite telling me that they’re doing everything right. What the hell? How can this be?

I’ll tell you how. In fact, to help you solve this problem once and for all, I’m going to give you a list of 11 possible reasons for why you’re not losing weight. Ready? Let’s do this…

1. You’re Eating Too Many Calories.

Here’s how it works, folks. Everything we do burns calories, and everything we consume (minus obvious stuff like water) contains calories.

Now, if the amount of calories being consumed is consistently greater than the amount of calories being burned, we gain weight. This is known as a caloric surplus, and it forces the body to store these left over calories in some form for later use. That form is most often body fat.

The good news however is that the opposite of this scenario has the opposite result. Meaning, if the amount of calories being consumed is consistently less than the amount of calories being burned, we lose weight. This is known as a caloric deficit, and it forces the body to burn some alternative fuel source for energy instead. That source is most often body fat.

What I’ve just described is the scientifically proven and always true energy balance equation commonly summed up as Calories In vs Calories Out.

So if you’re not losing weight… you’re simply eating too many calories and no deficit is present.

2. No, Seriously… You’re Eating Too Many Calories.

Maybe you accidentally skipped over #1. It’s cool. I skim articles all the time, too. So just in case you missed it, here’s your chance to go back up and read the first item on this list. It’s kinda important.

3. Maybe You Didn’t Hear Me: YOU’RE EATING TOO MANY CALORIES!

What, you thought I was joking? I’m not. The reason you’re not losing weight is because you eat too much. That’s it. A caloric deficit is the one big requirement here, and you simply don’t have one.

4. I Know You Were Hoping For Other Reasons, But There Aren’t Any.

Sorry to disappoint you, but there’s no big secret being hidden from you or any little tip that you’ve somehow missed. You’re just not creating the required caloric deficit. Simple as that.

5. Too Many Carbs After 7PM Is Causing… Nope… It’s Still Calories.

Hi. Above all else, weight control and body composition really do revolve around calories. Eat more of them and you gain weight, eat less of them and you lose weight. Taaadaaa!

And yes, I know you’ve probably heard otherwise. I get that you’ve probably seen some person claim that the key to weight loss is everything from carbs, to fat, to avoiding certain food groups, to eating 6 small meals per day, to not eating after a certain time at night, to only eating healthy “clean” foods or magical superfoods, and on and on and on.

That’s all bullshit.

Truth is, the key to weight loss (and weight gain) is and always will be calories. Anyone who disagrees is an idiot who should be ignored. And the product they are likely trying to sell should be avoided, too.

So while a lot of this other stuff definitely matters in terms of overall health and still definitely plays an important role in helping you improve your body, it’s always a distant second to calories when it comes to weight loss or a lack thereof.

More about this here: The Truth About Fat Loss

6. “But I’m NOT Eating Too Many Calories, I Swear!” Yes, You Are.

I know, I know. You’re counting calories and eating healthy and you know for sure that you’re eating the right amount that you need to eat in order to lose weight. Yet, you’re somehow still not losing weight.

Well, guess what? You’re wrong.

Underestimating

If there’s one thing damn near every nutritionist and diet professional can agree on, it’s that people trying to lose weight almost ALWAYS underestimate how many calories they are actually eating. It happens all the time, and various weight loss studies prove it.

Some people underestimate the quantity of food they consume (like thinking you ate 1 serving when you really ate 3 or 4), while others underestimate the amount of calories it contained (like thinking a meal was 500 calories when it was really 1000). Some underestimate both.

Mistakes And Under-Reporting

In fact, many people just screw up during the serving size measuring process and take significantly more than they think they’re taking. Leigh Peel shows a few examples of this right here.

Many other people just think there are certain “free” foods they can eat and not count… like fruits and vegetables for example. As if the calories they contain are magic calories that somehow don’t matter? Funny stuff. In reality, they matter just like any other calories matter, and they can add up pretty quick. Count them. Count everything.

And don’t forget the people who eat “tiny” amounts of something here and there and assume it’s so insignificant that they don’t even need to bother counting it. Guess what? The calories from that sort of thing adds up pretty quick, too.

Once again, this is all stuff that is seen over and over again, and it commonly ends up accounting for hundreds or sometimes even thousands of accidental “I-didn’t-even-realize-it” calories.

I actually show a typical real world example of this kind of thing right here.

Hell, many people just flat out lie about how much they are truly eating. Why? Because they’re apparently too embarrassed to admit what they eat (even to themselves), yet not too embarrassed to be and stay fat as a result.

You’re Unknowingly Getting It Wrong Somewhere

Now I’m not accusing you of being an underestimater, or a bad measurer, or a liar, or someone who’s just bad at counting. I’m just telling you the facts.

And the fact is, weight loss always happens when a caloric deficit is present. So if you claim to consistently be eating the right amount of calories yet still aren’t losing weight, then you’re simply not in a caloric deficit and had to have screwed something up somewhere.

7. “But I’m Burning Tons Of Calories, I Swear!” No, You’re Not.

I know, I know. You’re exercising like crazy and burning tons and tons of calories through cardio and weight training and are therefore in the caloric deficit you need to be in for weight loss to occur. Yet, for some unknown reason, you’re still not losing weight.

What could it possibly be? Oh, I know… the fact that infinite real world examples and various studies also prove that people trying to lose weight almost ALWAYS overestimate calories burned.

Yup, in addition to underestimating the calories we consume, we also overestimate the calories we burn. How’s that for a recipe for disaster?

So you know the “tons” of calories you assumed you’ve burned doing cardio? Yeah, that didn’t actually happen. Based on all of the research I’ve seen, an average person doing a typical form of cardio at a typical intensity will burn around 7-10 calories per minute on average.

Think about that the next time you assume 30 minutes on the treadmill is going to have some super significant calorie burning effect. It won’t.

Not to mention, another big problem with overestimating calories burned is that it gives people the false mindset of “Oh, I was on the elliptical for 25 minutes today, so I can surely afford to eat this extra 1000 calories now… right?”

They then proceed to cancel out whatever small amount of calories they burned (and then some), and then wonder why they’re not losing weight despite “working out all the time.” HA!

8. You MIGHT Be Gaining Some Other Form Of “Weight”

Okay, you got me… there’s an exception to some of the statements being made in this article, and there is a legitimate reason for why you might not be losing weight besides a lack of a caloric deficit.

What is it, you ask? Well, it could be that you ARE in that required caloric deficit and you ARE losing fat, but you happen to be gaining something else that is counterbalancing your weight.

See, even though we often use these words interchangeably, there’s a difference between weight loss and fat loss. Fat loss is always fat. Weight loss however can be fat, muscle, water, glycogen, poop or all of the above. And since most people only monitor their fat loss by monitoring their weight on the scale, your true progress can be temporarily hidden (this is extra true for women on a monthly basis).

This is why it’s a good idea to do more than just weigh yourself. For example, take measurements, take pictures, and get your body fat percentage measured.

Of course, the difference between “weight loss” and “fat loss” doesn’t change the calories in vs calories out equation. Nor does it change the fact that a caloric deficit is still the one and only requirement here. It just means that it’s possible to lose fat while gaining something else, and it can make it seem as though you haven’t lost any.

BUT… you must keep in mind that this scenario is just a short term thing at best. Meaning, if week after week is passing and you’re still not losing any weight, it’s HIGHLY unlikely that you just so happen to be simultaneously gaining some other form of weight (like muscle) this consistently.

Instead, it’s MUCH more likely that you’re just eating too many calories, not creating a caloric deficit, and are just not losing any fat, period.

I cover this weight loss plateau myth in detail here: Muscle Weighs More Than Fat?

Speaking of which…

9. The Dreaded Weight Loss Plateau…

Were you previously losing weight, but then it just stopped? If so, you’ve hit the dreaded weight loss plateau and that can only mean one thing: you’re still eating too many calories. Let me explain…

A weight loss plateau is what happens when the caloric deficit you successfully created has ceased to exist. There’s a few reasons for why this happens and why it’s so common, but it would honestly take its own article to fully explain (don’t worry, it’s on my to-do list).

But the gist of it is simple… calories in vs calories out still remains true, it’s just that your specific numbers in that equation have changed as a result of the weight loss you’ve already experienced.

This is partially because being in a deficit causes your metabolic rate to slow down a bit over time (a process known as “adaptive thermogenesis”), but it’s mostly just because you’ve already lost weight… so the calorie intake that worked when you were 250lbs doesn’t work the same now that you’re 200lbs.

And this is all just another way of saying that you’re eating too many calories for your new current weight and the required caloric deficit no longer exists. Eat a little less (or burn a little more) and you’ll magically break that plateau.

10. “Starvation Mode”

Ah yes, the always entertaining starvation mode. This is one of those subjects that’s going to need WAY more than a quick mention in an article to properly cover. Hell, it’s going to need a full article of its own just to define what it actually is and isn’t.

Most people using this term have no clue.

Fortunately, I’ve recently written that article and I highly suggest checking it out (after finishing this one, of course): Starvation Mode: Is It a Myth or Is It Real?

For now, allow me to briefly summarize the two most relevant points I make in that article.

First, the people who think they aren’t losing weight because they are “in starvation mode” are wrong. Instead, they are just failing to lose weight due to one of the reasons we already covered (e.g. you’re eating too many calories).

In this case, “starvation mode” is just one of the many silly things people throw out there as their excuse for failing to create a caloric deficit. Happens all the time. The solution of course is to fix your diet and training program, actually stick to it, and make sure the one and only thing you need to be doing (creating a caloric deficit) is actually being done.

The second point is that the definition of “starvation mode” most people have in their head is wrong and nothing more than a myth. So the idea that not eating enough is preventing you from losing any weight or even causing you to gain weight is just pure bullshit.

However, there are certain aspects of “starvation mode” that are real, but they are better described as the “starvation response.” For example, your metabolic rate does slow down when you’re losing weight (due to a combination of adaptive thermogenesis and the fact that you weigh less than you used to).

And yes, the more excessively low your calorie intake is (and/or the more excessively high your output is), the more significant this “slow down” will be.

But the thing is, this “slow down” will never actually be significant enough to STOP or PREVENT weight loss from happening or somehow CAUSE weight gain. That’s a myth.

The truth is, there is no such thing as “not losing weight because you’re eating too little.” No matter how little you’re eating, you’ll always lose weight if a deficit is present.

So then what about that girl who claims to be “eating 800 calories per day and still isn’t losing weight?” Simple… she’s wrong. In reality, she’s miscalculating, underestimating and/or under-reporting her calorie intake and is consuming more than the 800 or whatever calories she claims to be. (Or, eating 800 calories most days is causing her to binge like crazy on other days, thus creating a wonderful scenario where she’s starving herself with very low calories some days, and then binge eating very high calories on others. In the end, the ‘binge calories’ beat the ‘starvation calories’ and no deficit exists.)

Like I said, it happens all the time. Take someone claiming to be eating very little and not losing weight. Lock them in a room and closely monitor/weigh/measure their food intake for them, and they will magically lose weight just fine. Studies like this have been done. Turns out they weren’t eating as little as they thought.

That’s the ironic thing about the concept of “starvation mode.” Certain parts of it are real (like your metabolic rate slowing down), but they’re either nowhere near as significant as people think (like that same metabolic slow down) or they’re just not what people think, period (“I skipped breakfast today… I’m probably already in starvation mode and burning muscle while gaining fat!!!”).

Which is just a long way of saying that the people who claim it’s their reason for not losing weight are incorrect. Instead, they’re just eating too many calories. Surprise surprise.

11. Legitimate (But Rare) Medical Issues.

I know we’d all like to believe that we’re failing to lose weight because some mysterious outside factor is screwing up our results. The thing is, it’s almost NEVER the case.

That’s why I find the “it’s my thyroid” thought so damn funny. In reality, you’re just not creating the caloric deficit that is required for weight loss to take place. Seriously, if your thyroid was capable of laughter, it would be laughing at you for trying to use it as an excuse for eating and exercising like a dumbass.

However, for the sake of being as complete as possible, I do want to mention that SOME people truly do have problems with their thyroid and/or other legit medical issues that can affect their ability to lose weight. Blood work is the only way to know for sure.

However, while this is real and it does happen, it’s probably not happening to you. You’re just eating too many calories.

And even in the cases when it IS happening to you, the reason for the lack of weight loss is still just a lack of a caloric deficit. The solution here however is less about eating less calories and more about solving the underlying health issue that’s preventing your body from burning as many calories as it should be.

The Big Point… Just In Case You Missed It

If you’re not losing weight, there’s likely a thousand different possible aspects of your diet and workout you might consider as the culprit. And of those thousand, you’d be wasting your time and energy giving a crap about 999 of them.

Instead, the true culprit is calories and the fact that you’re either eating too many of them or not burning enough of them. Even if you think you are… you’re just not.

If you were, you’d be losing weight.

So before you start focusing on the hilarious garbage, meaningless nonsense, and countless myth-based excuses that most people tend to focus on as possible reasons for why they’re not losing weight, step back for a second and take a closer look at exactly how many calories you’re eating and exactly how many calories you’re burning.

100% of the time, that’s where your problem (and solution) will be found.

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