1. Increase Water intake.
Increasing your water intake is a simple way to boost weight loss with minimal effort.
In fact, one study found that pairing a low-calorie diet with increased water intake before meals resulted in 44% more weight loss over a 12-week period (2).
Research shows that water may enhance weight loss by bumping up metabolism, temporarily increasing the calories your body burns after eating.
According to one study in 14 adults, drinking 16.9 fluid ounces (500 ml) of water boosted metabolism by 30% after 30–40 minutes (3).
Drinking water with meals can also keep you feeling full, reducing your appetite and intake.
For example, one small study showed that drinking 16.9 fluid ounces (500 ml) of water before a meal reduced subsequent calories consumed by 13% (4)
Drinking water can temporarily increase metabolism and reduce appetite to enhance weight loss. For best results, drink at least 34–68 fluid ounces (1–2 liters) of water per day.
2. Increase Your Protein Intake
To lose numbers of pounds fast, including more protein-rich foods in your diet is absolutely essential.
Protein can also help reduce appetite and decrease calorie intake.
One study in 19 adults found that increasing protein intake by just 15% increased feelings of fullness and significantly reduced calorie intake, belly fat and body weight (7).
Another study showed that consuming a high-protein breakfast decreased levels of ghrelin, the hormone that stimulates hunger, by a much greater degree than a high-carb breakfast (8).
Meat, seafood, poultry, legumes, eggs, nuts and seeds are a few healthy sources of protein that you can easily add to your diet.
Protein has been shown to decrease belly fat and body weight. It may also promote feelings of fullness to reduce calorie intake. Lean protein helps build muscle. Lean protein also helps a person feel fuller after eating. This may mean that people eat fewer calories during a meal and, as a result of feeling fuller, may be able to cut out some unnecessary carbs, which may lead to weight loss.
3. Reduce Carb Consumption
Decreasing your intake of refined carbs is another useful strategy to accelerate weight loss.
Refined carbs have been stripped of their nutrient and fiber content during processing, resulting in a final product that is nutrient-poor.
What’s more, they typically have a high glycemic index, which means that they are digested and absorbed quickly. Rapid digestion leads to spikes and crashes in blood sugar levels, followed by increased hunger (9).
Consuming high numbers of refined carbs has also been linked to increased body fat and weight gain.
For instance, one study in 2,834 people found that a higher intake of refined carbohydrates was associated with increased belly fat while a greater intake of whole grains was associated with less belly fat (10).
Another study had similar findings, reporting that a diet rich in whole grains decreased both body weight and calorie intake compared to a diet focused on refined grains (11).
To get started, simply swap out refined grains in pastas, white breads, cereals and pre-packaged products for healthy, whole-grain alternatives such as couscous, quinoa, brown rice or barley.
Before embarking on a low carb diet, it is essential to get advice from a doctor or dietitian, as this type of diet can cause health risks.
Refined carbs can increase hunger levels and may be associated with increased belly fat and weight gain compared to whole grains.
4. Count Calories & Follow Low Calories Diet.
It may sound like a no-brainer, but counting calories is one of the easiest and most effective ways to start losing weight fast.
Weight loss occurs when you use more calories than you take in, either by reducing your intake or increasing your physical activity.
While cutting calories alone is generally not considered a sustainable way to lose weight, counting calories can be an effective weight loss tool when paired with other diet and lifestyle modifications.
Keeping track of your calorie intake can increase your awareness of what you’re putting on your plate, giving you the knowledge you need to make healthier choices.
Interestingly, one review of 37 studies found that weight loss programs that incorporated calorie counting led to 7.3 pounds (3.3 kg) more weight loss than those that didn’t (1).
Try tracking your calorie intake by using an app or a food journal. The amount of calories burned per day depends on:
- body size
- activity level
If someone consumes fewer calories per day than their body uses, they will lose weight. People should follow a low-calorie diet to create a calorie deficit.
5. Start Lifting Weights
Resistance training is a type of exercise that involves working against a force to increase muscle strength and endurance.
Adding resistance training to your routine can bump up fat burning and metabolism to help you burn more calories, even while at rest.
One review showed that 10 weeks of resistance training may increase metabolism by 7%, stabilize blood sugar in those with diabetes and lead to 4 pounds (1.8 kg) of fat loss in adults (12).
Meanwhile, another study in 94 women suggested that resistance training preserved fat-free mass and metabolism after weight loss, allowing the body to burn more calories throughout the day (13).
Get started by hitting the gym or doing body weight exercises at home, such as squats, planks and lunges.
Resistance training can help increase metabolism and preserve fat-free mass, helping you burn more calories throughout the day.
6. Add Cardio to Your Routine
Whether you’re looking to lose one pound or 20, adding cardio to your routine is a must.
Cardio, also known as aerobic exercise, is a form of physical activity that increases your heart rate and helps strengthen your heart and lungs.
What’s more, it increases the calories your body burns to aid fat and weight loss.
One study in 141 overweight and obese participants showed that cardio exercise alone was effective at inducing significant weight loss.
In fact, performing cardio to burn either 400 calories or 600 calories five times per week for 10 months resulted in an average weight loss of 8.6 pounds (3.9 kg) and 11.5 pounds (5.2 kg), respectively (25).
Another study had similar findings, reporting that six months of cardio exercise alone decreased body weight by 9% in 141 obese older adults (26).
To maximize weight loss, aim for 150–300 minutes of cardio each week, or about 20–40 minutes every day (27).
Walking, running, jumping rope, rowing and boxing are some easy and enjoyable cardio workouts that can amp up weight loss.
Anyone with the following health problems or lifestyle issues should get medical clearance before attempting any high-intensity exercise:
- high blood pressure
- heart disease
- coronary artery disease
- diabetes or pre-diabetes
- cigarette smoking
- abnormal cholesterol levels
- mainly sedentary lifestyle
Cardio can increase your body’s calorie-burning quota to boost both weight and fat loss.
7. Eat More Fiber
One study in healthy men found that consuming 33 grams of insoluble fiber, which is commonly found in wheat and vegetables, was effective in decreasing both appetite and food intake (16).
The satiety-boosting effects of fiber could produce big benefits in terms of weight control.
One review reported that increasing fiber intake by 14 grams per day was linked to a 10% reduction in calorie intake and 4.2 pounds (1.9 kg) of weight loss over a four-month period, even without making any other diet or lifestyle changes (17).
In addition, a 20-month study in 252 women found that each gram of dietary fiber consumed was associated with 0.5 pounds (0.25 kg) less body weight and 0.25% less body fat (18).
Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds are all excellent sources of fiber that are integral to a healthy weight loss diet.
Fiber keeps you feeling full to reduce appetite and intake, which may boost weight loss.
8. Set a Sleep Schedule
While there’s no doubt that switching up your diet and exercise routine are the two most important routes to losing many pounds, the amount you sleep could also play important role.
In fact, one study in 245 women showed that both sleeping at least seven hours per night and getting better sleep quality increased the likelihood of weight loss success by 33% (19).
And just as getting enough sleep can set you up for success, sleep deprivation can cause the pounds to slowly pack on over time.
One study following 68,183 women over 16 years found that those sleeping five hours or less gained an average 2.5 pounds (1.14 kg) more than women who slept at least seven hours per night (20).
Another study showed that even a single night of sleep deprivation can increase levels of hunger hormones, which could lead to increased appetite and weight gain (21).
Try practicing a bedtime ritual each night, sticking to a routine and minimizing your intake of caffeine before bed to establish a healthy sleep cycle and enhance weight loss.
Getting enough sleep and improving sleep quality could benefit weight loss. Conversely, sleep deprivation can lead to increased hunger and weight gain.
9. Reduce bloating
Bloating occurs when the body holds on to extra water or gas. Removing foods that cause bloating can help reduce weight. This includes foods that are high in sodium, such as canned soup, frozen dinners, and carbonated beverages.
10. Avoid junk food
Junk foods are:
- high calorie
- not filling
- lacking nutrients
- high in carbs
- high in salt
- very processed
Examples of junk food include:
- baked goods
- processed snacks
- most desserts
People should try to eat whole, single ingredient foods to help reduce calorie and carb consumption.
11. Move more
Simply moving around more can help burn calories, and burning more calories can help a person to lose additional weight in a week.
Ways to add more movement to everyday routines include:
- parking further from the door
- taking 5 to 15 minute-long walking breaks
- walking during lunch
- taking the stairs
12. Follow a meal plan
Following a meal plan can help people stick to a diet and stay more accountable. There is a wide range of meal plans that a person can try. Start by planning each meal for the week and make sure to stick to the daily goals.
13. Seek support
Teaming up with other people who are also looking to lose weight may make individuals more likely to reach their weight loss goals. People can find weight loss support from friends, family, and online communities dedicated to healthful lifestyles. Studies have shown that simply receiving text message support can promote healthful behavior that can lead to lasting weight loss.