Every year, millions of adults try to lose weight and either don't see the results they wanted, or gain back all the weight they lost as soon as they stop their new routine. So much information in the fitness industry is both confusing and restrictive, which makes it easy to slip back into the habits that caused you to gain excess weight in the first place.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution for weight loss, but there are parameters you can set in place that can at least answer some of your questions. Don’t let clickbait posts influence you—you know, the ones that promise to help you lose 30 lbs in 30 days. Below are some reasons why those promises are unrealistic, and what an average, sustainable rate of weight loss might look like.
How much weight can you safely lose per month?
Losing weight requires patience, no doubt, but this process happens at a much slower pace than most people expect. It's unhealthy to drop too much weight too quickly, and rapid weight loss can actually slow down the calorie-burning process. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the average person can lose one or two pounds per week if they are actively trying, which works out to about 4 to 8 pounds per month! It’s also important to remember, however, that the rate depends on several factors such as how much fat you already have (typically, the higher fat you carry the more initial weight you can lose), what kind of food you’re eating, how you’re maintaining other lifestyle factors such as sleep and stress, etcetera.
Most Important Factors for Fat loss
There are many factors that can affect the way we weigh. These range from simple things like smaller portions and drinking more water, to more complex changes like quitting smoking. When it comes to weight loss, the key is addressing the factors as if they’re on a hierarchy of needs, before gradually moving on to those less important.
Nutrition is Queen
In that hierarchy, nutrition takes the top spot. You can be doing all of the cardio in the world, but if you’re not eating right, you will not be able to lose weight efficiently. But what does eating right mean? To lose weight, you need to burn more energy than you are taking in (i.e through eating and drinking). Simple ways to ensure you’re doing this are by calorie counting, eating lower-calorie, fiber-rich foods such as veggies, or just cutting your portion sizes down a little bit!
Exercise for Fat Loss
People mistakenly believe that specific exercises help you lose weight, but research shows that exercising is not the most efficient way to do so. A common misconception when it comes to exercise is that the more you do, the more weight you’ll lose. This often leads to unreasonable workout routines and unreasonable standards—such as the “I’m going to run 5 miles a day!” moment—which can lead to burnout very quickly. Turns out: we only burn about 10-30% of our food intake from exercise! When choosing an exercise, the most important thing is to pick something you enjoy and can stick to long-term.
Remember 'NEAT' for Fat Loss
NEAT, or Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis, is defined as any energy expanded outside of regularly planned activity. You’d be surprised how much of this you probably already do including taking your pet on a walk, moving your hands while talking, fidgeting while sitting at your work desk. All of these burn calories! It might seem simple, but the little things turn into a lot over time when it comes to calorie burning. If you're interested in extra support (about 150 extra calories a day), try a metabolism supplement to help enhance your body's thermogenic process.
What Is a Healthy Weight Loss Strategy?
Learning to achieve your health goals through small steps rather than big ones will help you avoid burnout and keep the weight off in the long run. Remember that nutrition and exercise are important, but so is maintaining the right mindset and expectations.
Need a more weight loss support?
By supplementing your healthier lifestyle with prebiotic fiber, you can support your nutritional weight loss goals!
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