1. Many people are unsure how to lose weight safely and
naturally. It does not help that many websites and
advertisements, particularly those belonging to companies
that sell diet drugs or other weight-loss products, promote
misinformation about losing weight.
According to 2014 research
, most people who search for tips on how to lose weight will come
across false or misleading information on weight loss.
“Fad” diets and exercise regimens can sometimes be dangerous as they can prevent people
from meeting their nutritional needs.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
, the safest amount of weight to
lose per week is between 1 and 2 pounds. Those who lose much more per week or try fad diets
or programs are much more likely to regain weight later on.
A variety of research-backed methods exists to help a person achieve a healthy weight safely.
These methods include:
Keeping healthful snacks at home and work can help a person avoid excess sugar and salt.
Healthful snacks No processed foods Protein No added sugar
Black coffee Hydration No high-calorie beverages No refined carbs
Fasting Counting calories Brushing teeth Fruit and veg. Reducing carbs
Fiber Fitness training Whey protein Eating slowly Adding chili Sleep
Smaller plates Summary
1. Keeping healthful snacks at home and in
Medically reviewed by Debra
Sullivan, Ph.D., MSN, R.N.,
CNE, COI — Written by
Jenna Fletcher on January 8,
vaccinated people have
similar levels of virus
quantifies foods’ health and
COVID-19: Simplified CPAP
system may help patients
UK approves Ronapreve
antibody combo for COVID-
COVID-19 mortality: Enzyme
that 'shreds membranes'
21 ways to lose weight safely
2. People often opt to eat foods that are convenient, so it is best to avoid keeping prepackaged
snacks and candies on hand.
found that people who kept unhealthful food at home found it more difficult to
maintain or lose weight.
Keeping healthful snacks at home and work can help a person meet their nutritional needs and
avoid excess sugar and salt. Good snack options include:
nuts with no added salt or sugar
Processed foods are high in sodium, fat, calories, and sugar. They often contain fewer nutrients
than whole foods.
According to a preliminary research study, processed foods are much more likely than other
foods to lead to addictive eating behaviors, which tend to result in people overeating.
A diet high in protein can help a person lose weight. An overview of existing research
protein diets concluded that they are a successful strategy for preventing or treating obesity.
Collectively, the data showed that higher-protein diets of 25–30 grams of protein per meal
provided improvements in appetite, body weight management, cardiometabolic risk factors, or
all of these health outcomes.
A person should eat more eggs, chicken, fish, lean meats, and beans. These foods are all high
in protein and relatively low in fat. Lean proteins include:
beans, peas, and lentils
low-fat cottage cheese
Sugar is not always easy to avoid, but eliminating processed foods is a positive first step to take.
According to the National Cancer Institute, men aged 19 years and older consume an average
of over 19 teaspoons of added sugar a day. Women in the same age group consume more than
14 teaspoons of added sugar a day.
Much of the sugar that people consume comes from fructose, which the liver breaks down and
turns into fat. After the liver turns the sugar into fat, it releases these fat cells into the blood,
which can lead to weight gain.
Coffee may have some positive health effects if a person refrains from adding sugar and fat. The
authors of a review article
noted that coffee improved the body’s metabolism of carbohydrates
2. Cutting out processed foods
3. Eating more protein
4. Quitting added sugar
5. Drinking black coffee
3. The same review highlighted an association between coffee consumption and a lower risk of
diabetes and liver disease.
Water is the best fluid that a person can drink throughout the day. It contains no calories and
provides a wealth of health benefits.
When a person drinks water throughout the day, the water helps increase their metabolism.
Drinking water before a meal can also help reduce the amount that they eat.
Finally, if people replace sugary beverages with water, this will help reduce the total number of
calories that they consume throughout the day.
Sodas, fruit juices, and sports and energy drinks often contain excess sugar, which can lead to
weight gain and make it more difficult for a person to lose weight.
Other high-calorie drinks include alcohol and specialty coffees, such as lattes, which contain
milk and sugar.
People can try replacing at least one of these beverages each day with water, sparkling water
with lemon, or an herbal tea.
Eating whole grains can aid weight loss and help protect the body from disease.
Evidence in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
suggests that refined carbohydrates
may be more damaging to the body’s metabolism than saturated fats.
In response to the influx of sugar from refined carbohydrates, the liver will create and release fat
into the bloodstream.
To reduce weight and keep it off, a person can eat whole grains instead.
Refined or simple carbohydrates include the following foods:
many types of cereal
6. Staying hydrated
7. Avoiding the calories in beverages
8. Avoiding refined carbohydrates
4. added sugars
many kinds of pasta
Rice, bread, and pasta are all available in whole-grain varieties, which can aid weight loss and
help protect the body from disease.
Fasting for short cycles may help a person lose weight. According to a 2015 study
fasting or alternate day fasting can help a person lose weight and maintain their weight loss.
However, not everyone should fast. Fasting can be dangerous for children, developing
teenagers, pregnant women, older people, and people with underlying health conditions.
Counting calories can be an effective way to avoid overeating. By counting calories, a person
will be aware of exactly how much they are consuming. This awareness can help them cut out
unnecessary calories and make better dietary choices.
A food journal can help a person think about what and how much they are consuming every
day. By doing this, they can also ensure that they are getting enough of each healthful food
group, such as vegetables and proteins.
In addition to improving dental hygiene, brushing the teeth can help reduce the temptation to
snack between meals.
If a person who frequently snacks at night brushes their teeth earlier in the evening, they may
feel less tempted to eat unnecessary snacks.
A diet rich in fruits and vegetables can help a person lose weight and maintain their weight loss.
The authors of a systematic review
support this claim, stating that promoting an increase in
fruit and vegetable consumption is unlikely to cause any weight gain, even without advising
people to reduce their consumption of other foods.
Diets low in simple carbohydrates can help a person reduce their weight by limiting the amount
of extra sugar that they eat.
Healthful low-carbohydrate diets focus on consuming whole carbohydrates, good fats, fiber, and
lean proteins. Instead of limiting all carbohydrates for a short period, this should be a
sustainable, long-term dietary adjustment.
shows that limiting refined carbohydrates also benefits a person by reducing the
levels of bad cholesterol in their body and improving metabolic risk factors.
Fiber offers several potential benefits to a person looking to lose weight. Research in Nutrition
states that an increase in fiber consumption can help a person feel fuller more
9. Fasting in cycles
10. Counting calories and keeping a food
11. Brushing teeth between meals or earlier
in the evening
12. Eating more fruits and vegetables
13. Reducing carbohydrate intake
14. Eating more fiber
5. Additionally, fiber aids weight loss by promoting digestion and balancing the bacteria in the gut.
Many people do not exercise regularly and may also have sedentary jobs. It is important to
include both cardiovascular (cardio) exercise, such as running or walking, and resistance training
in a regular exercise program.
Cardio helps the body burn calories quickly while resistance training builds lean muscle mass.
Muscle mass can help people burn more calories at rest.
has found that people who participate in high-intensity interval training
(HIIT) can lose more weight and see greater improvements in their cardiovascular health than
people who are using other popular methods of weight loss.
People who use whey protein may increase their lean muscle mass while reducing body fat,
which can help with weight loss.
Research from 2014
found that whey protein, in combination with exercise or a weight loss
diet, may help reduce body weight and body fat.
Eating slowly can help a person reduce the total number of calories that they consume in one
sitting. The reason for this is that it can take the brain some time to realize that the stomach is
indicated that eating quickly correlates with obesity. While the study could not
recommend interventions to help a person eat more slowly, the results do suggest that eating
food at a slower pace can help reduce calorie intake.
Chewing food thoroughly and eating at a table with others may help a person slow down while
Adding spice to foods may help a person lose weight. Capsaicin is a chemical that is commonly
present in spices, such as chili powder, and may have positive effects.
For example, research
indicates that capsaicin can help burn fat and increase metabolism,
albeit at very low rates.
There is a link between obesity and a lack of quality sleep. Research
suggests that getting
sufficient sleep can contribute to weight loss.
The researchers found that women who described their sleep quality as poor or fair were less
likely to successfully lose weight than those who reported their sleep quality as being very
15. Increasing regular cardiovascular and
MEDICAL NEWS TODAY NEWSLETTER
Knowledge is power. Get our free daily newsletter.
Dig deeper into the health topics you care about most. Subscribe to our facts-first newsletter
Your privacy is important to us
Enter your email SIGN UP NOW
SIGN UP NOW
16. Consuming whey protein
17. Eating slowly
18. Adding chili
19. Getting more sleep
Reducing the size of the plate might help a person control portion sizes.
Using smaller plates could have a positive psychological effect. People tend to fill their plate, so
reducing the size of the plate may help reduce the amount of food that a person eats in one
A 2015 systematic review
concluded that reducing plate size could have an impact on portion
control and energy consumption, but it was unclear whether this was applicable across the full
range of portion sizes.
It is also worth noting that many of the studies included in the review were authored by an
academic, Brian Wansink, who has since had a lot of research withdrawn from journals due to
errors and misreporting.
It is vital for people to focus on making changes that they can maintain. In some cases, a person
may prefer to implement changes gradually or try introducing one at a time.
Anyone who finds it challenging to lose weight may benefit from speaking to a doctor or
dietitian to find a plan that works for them.
Last medically reviewed on January 8, 2019
Diabetes Heart Disease Nutrition / Diet Obesity / Weight Loss / Fitness
Start a custom weight loss program
Noom helps you adopt healthy habits so you can lose weight and keep it off. Your program is
customized to your goals and fitness needs. Just take a quick assessment and get started
27 sources v FEEDBACK:
Was this article helpful?
20.Using a smallerplate