In the past few years, a lot of companies have introduced programs to help people lose weight and some of them are so-called fat burners. There are a couple of reasons why we think this is a bad idea, and they can be summarized as follows:
- You will lose weight in 7 days or less. In other words, if you follow these tips, you will lose weight in one week or less.
- You will be eating unhealthy food that you most likely won’t want to eat!
- You will be drinking too much water and losing lots of fluids. The last thing you want to do is get dehydrated! Water is your best friend!
- Your body isn’t used to working that hard and quickly for a period of time. When it gets used to it, fat loss tends to slow down. This makes you more likely to gain weight back when you start exercising again.
- If you drink too much water, your urine color turns from clear to yellow/brown over the course of the day. That’s because your body has started using up its stored energy as glycogen (the sugar that we can use for energy). The quicker this happens the more likely it is that your body will store more glycogen than it would normally do for an extended period of time (which means losing weight faster).
Introduction: How to lose weight in 7 days
Eat healthy: the benefits of eating healthy foods
There’s a lot of research out there showing how effective eating whole foods is in terms of health and weight, and specifically the benefits of eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains.
But the key word here is “healthy”. Eating healthy does not mean following an all-organic-everything diet or trying to avoid red meat. It does mean that you should eat a diet which supports your body’s nutrient needs on a day-to-day basis.
I personally find this concept really hard to follow and don’t even try for any length of time (which is why I think I have more success with my slow cooking recipes than my actual weight loss efforts).
But when it comes to weight loss, some people are simply going to be better than others at eating healthy diets consistently over long periods of time (and some people seem to be naturally good at it). And that’s great! You can certainly be better at this than I am — but if you are serious about getting healthier and losing weight, you need to set yourself up in a way which will allow you to do it regularly over the long term.
Avoid processed foods: the dangers of processed foods
“Avoid processed foods: the dangers of processed foods” is a good summary of the kinds of products you should avoid when trying to lose weight.
The post was written by LeanKitchen and it’s a good read, especially if you are interested in learning more about how to lose weight but don’t want to go into details about exactly what’s wrong with what you eat (which is still a subject for much greater debate than just this one post).
Drink plenty of water: the importance of staying hydrated
The word “hydration” is associated with a lot of things, not just dehydration. It’s used to describe the level of salt our bodies are using (the amount of sodium in our bloodstream), it’s used to describe how much water we sweat (the amount of water we lose through our skin and mucous membranes)
To describe how much liquid people can drink without getting dehydrated, and even what kind of food we should eat (for example, is it OK for people to eat 5 apples a day?).
A lot of that is very practical, but there’s also a lot which has to do with history and culture. And there’s something else too: a simple one-liner that could help you lose weight in 7 days.
If you can think of any two words that go together better than “water”, then you will win the competition.
The simplest way to get started is by asking yourself, “How often do I drink water?” If you think about it for a while, you may realize that it rapidly becomes difficult to answer this question if your average daily intake is between 1 litre and 2 litres — or if your body mass index (BMI) exceeds 35 or 40 kg/m2. In those cases, you should consider replacing water with something more easily accessible: tea or coffee…
If you find yourself doing this habit by habit, then perhaps it doesn’t matter so much at all whether your daily intake comes from 1 litre or 2 litres; perhaps your body will adapt just fine. But if you find yourself doing this habit every 24 hours and/or your BMI falls below 25 kg/m2, then the question does matter — dramatically. To lose weight in 7 days using the above method:
- drink 125 ml – 3 cups of tea or coffee;
- drink 100 ml – 2 cups of coke;
- drink 75 ml – 1 cup of green tea;
- drink 50 ml – 1 cup black tea;
- drink 25 ml – 1 cup lemonade;
- drink 15 ml – 1 glass juice;
And so on! But when can be as high as 200 ml per day! Be careful though — some drinks are more calorie-dense than others. For example: 100 g dried beetroot contains ~100 kcal compared to ~200 kcal in 7 day’s
Exercise regularly: the benefits of exercise
Lots of us have the same question: how can I lose weight in 7 days?
While there’s a lot of misinformation about how to lose weight, and there are many different kinds of advice. There are all sorts of things you can do to encourage weight loss, and some work is more effective than others
. But the truth is the best way to lose weight is simply to eat less. The most important thing you can do is “eat less, move more”, which translates into walking or biking/cycling.
Some people feel as if they need to exercise — but it’s not absolutely necessary. If you feel that exercise would be beneficial for you, that’s great! Just make sure your daily calories (calories burned) don’t go above what you need for your body type.
For instance: if you weigh 100 pounds (42 kilos), then an average person would burn about 1,500 calories per day. However, if you are thin (5 kilos), or very light (1 kilo), then your daily calories might not even need to be that high; in fact, they could be lower than 1,500 per day — they may even be as low as 800-900 calories per day!
This means that simply exercising (whether it’s walking or jogging) can help you lose weight just as effectively as eating less and exercising more — especially if your aim is body composition rather than weight loss (which may vary depending on where on the scale you are).
We also need to remember that hunger is a powerful motivator of how we move. If you feel hungry before an exercise session, then it probably means something else — like that those 1,500 calories burned were far too few; or maybe even that you aren’t getting enough protein (which will help burn fat).
So stop being so uptight about when and how much exercise should take place; it doesn’t matter much whether you go for a brisk walk or sprint up the stairs at work — both will help with weight loss! Just make sure your calorie intake won’t ruin your progress any faster than usual…
Take a break: the importance of taking breaks
There is a lot of controversy surrounding the effectiveness of intermittent fasting (IF) and only two papers have been published on the topic. Both are positive, but they provide different results:
The first paper showed that IF can encourage weight loss over the long term, but not over the short term
. The second paper showed that although there was no evidence that IF had any long-term impact on weight loss, there was evidence that IF might help people lose weight in their immediate environment.
Both of these papers make several important points that we should all keep in mind when trying to eat less and move more:
- There is a lot of inter-individual variability in how many calories people need to lose weight; this makes it impossible for any one person to predict exactly how much you will lose each week with IF. The authors of both papers note this as an important consideration especially for individuals who are trying to improve their body composition (body fat percentage) and/or increase their energy expenditure (caloric expenditure).
- There is a lot of other variability in how individuals’ bodies respond to IF (e.g., recovery from exercise, food intake) and it often depends on which metabolic pathways they are using while they are following IF.
- Someone who wants to lose weight may be able to get some benefit from IF without having to fast at all. This is because some people may need extra calories in order to achieve a specific body composition goal (e.g., high body fat percentage), which could help them lose weight anyway when they fast for a set period of time every week or so (they would still be eating fewer calories overall).
- IF may not be optimal for everyone; it’s certainly something some people will probably want more than others. The problem with finding out what works best for everyone is that you can’t just experiment with different amounts or schedules until you find out what works best for yourself. More importantly, if your goal is healthy body composition, a low-carb diet isn’t going to help you achieve this goal anyway; if you want low-carb or ketogenic diets, then doing something else like fasting every week or two won’t help either. If your goal is healthy burning thermogenesis (the process via which fats are used up during exercise), then maybe intermittent fasting isn’t the right diet for you either: if so, then finding out what works best for you will require more