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From the outset, we need to be clear that there are two paths for women to lose weight fast – the short term route and the healthy route. There are all sorts of crash diet plans out there that are pretty much guaranteed to eventually lead to gaining weight over the long term. Putting your body into ‘starvation mode’ doesn’t just mess up endocrine and hormonal systems, but means that when you eat normally again your body automatically tries to retain as many calories (read: fat) as possible. So while a week or two of nettle and cabbage soup will lead to immediate weight loss, it is not a viable long-term option.
So what is the key for women needing to lose weight fast and healthily? Here’s the good news – it is possible and with the following tips, you will see substantial differences within 8-12 weeks. There is no need to spend hundreds on outlandish dieting fads, compromise your health by restricting your diet or run up a mountain every morning. Simple lifestyle changes are all that is required, which after a few days getting used to can easily become second nature. Even better – it’s totally healthy too.
1) Eat Right
Many people have experienced success with limited diets such as Keto and Atkins, but the long-term health benefits/issues are yet to become evident. Cavemen may have been fit, but they also tended to die young. A sensible diet balanced in proportion to portion size is the key for women losing weight fast.
Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Done well, you can take in most of the essential minerals and vitamins you’ll need for the day which will help with hunger pangs later on. A mixed fruit bowl with natural yogurt(low fat is usually packed with sugar), a little fortified oat-based cereal and some coffee/tea will set you for the day.
Treat lunch as an energy top up instead of a meal. A huge leafy salad with balsamic dressing can weigh in at less than a couple of hundred calories.
Dinner should be lean protein based (best for staving off the desire to snack). Grilled fish, chicken or low sodium meat substitutes are best alongside all the salad and steamed vegetables you can eat. A small portion of carbohydrates is fine, but avoid pasta/rice if possible. Opt for quinoa or good old potatoes for optimum nutritional value.
Need a snack? Look for olives, pickled beetroot etc. Anything not including sugar!
2) Enjoy A Smaller Plate
Sounds crazy but then who set the ‘official’ size of a dinner plate? Knocking a couple of inches off the diameter of your plate will correlate to dropping inches from your waist. Just by limiting portion size can comfortably knock hundreds of unnecessary calories off your daily intake. Even better, it allows for ‘naughtier’ foods to be taken in smaller quantities.
3) Use Salt Carefully
One of the risks of rapid dieting for women is dehydration. Salt is often thought to dehydrate us but actually helps retain water weight. This is why it is essential for overall health, but remember that you do not need very much of it. Dropping your sodium levels will reduce retained water weight and this can make a huge difference early on. Let water pass through naturally – sure you’ll visit the bathroom more often, but the effect on dress size is noticeable within just a few days.
4) Cravings? Address Them!
There’s no point being miserable when undertaking a fast diet. Switching instantly to a restrictive diet far from what you are used to is not easy. Ideally, look to taper gently on to such a scheme by slowly reducing intake of sugary and salty snacks. But if you need to lose weight fast, it’s best to just compromise a little. An ideal calorie aim for this plan is no more than 1200 calories a day. A candy bar can pack not just a third of that amount, but the sugar and fats will lead to further cravings. This pitfall can be dodged by switching from ice cream to low-calorie sorbet, chocolate to dried fruits (tastier than they sound!).
5) Cut Out Alcohol
Ever noticed how many teetotallers tend to be quite slender? Alcohol has an astonishing amount of calories. A pint of beer or a large glass of wine will weight in at about 200 each. Plus the sugar content will lead to cravings and a desire to break dieting protocol! Combine your fast diet with a break from the booze. Not only will this help maintain a sensible calorific intake, you’ll feel and look better without even noticing. Coffee and tea are great for helping to diet as the caffeine stimulates the metabolism even more.
6) Sleep More
Plenty of people assume that the longer you are awake, the more calories you’ll burn. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that. If you’re awake the body will be moaning for food and snacks. When you are asleep, for seven hours straight, the metabolism may slow down a little but if you’re dozing – who cares! Zero intake is better than muddling about the house snacking. Plus it will help balance your hormones and endocrine system, leading to a lower desire for sugary/salty delights in the long run.
As outlined above, losing weight fast ought to be considered by weeks instead of days to be done properly. 8 weeks of following the above and aiming for that 1200 calorie figure will unquestionably lead to long-term sustainable weight loss for any woman.
Noticed that exercise hasn’t been mentioned yet? The above is based on a standard non-sedentary lifestyle. Keeping generally active – little things like taking the stairs, walking instead of driving etc. can make a significant difference. There’s no need to do crazy for exercise, and if you do try to measure your calorie expenditure and supplement that with additional food. Pregnant women or those with underlying health issues should always check with their doctor first before undertaking this plan.