13 Weight Loss Facts for People Who Want Tips that Are Backed by Real Studies
I hate those posts that give you “weight loss facts” and the only resource they give you is, “trust me, I know what I’m talking about.” Or they say, “found in a study” and there’s no link to the said study.
It’s so stressful because you get so much of that when it comes to health advice and all of it is contradictory. So! I thought I’d make my own simple weight loss facts post that’s backed by REAL studies and helps you to cut the I-don’t-know-who-to-believe stress.
Now with that said, I do think it’s always important to do your own research so that you can have the most well-rounded opinion, but you don’t have to. 🙂
Side note: I just wanted to quickly congratulate you on wanting to take care of your health! It’s so important and you only get one body. ❤️ 😊
1. Your Mindset Affects Your Weight
Ok, so this is the most important weight loss fact (in my opinion), and I think we should tackle it first.
You are not your thoughts, but your thoughts can control you and what you do. And that also means they control your weight loss too, as shown in this study.
For YEARS I told myself I had no self-control. That I had no motivation to stay consistent with losing weight and being healthy. And that kept me on a constant loop of losing weight for a couple of weeks and then putting it back on.
So the best thing to do is to figure out, and write down, all of the negative beliefs you have about your health, and take control of them. They’ve controlled you for way too long, and the best thing you can do is replace them with empowering beliefs that support your goals.
So instead of saying, “My entire family is overweight, this is just how life is for me and my family,” you can say, “I deserve to live a full and healthy life and to feel good. Even if my family doesn’t agree, I can do this for me.”
“I always fail at losing weight.” Instead, you can say, “I’ve messed up before, but I can succeed and find something that works for me. Just because this one weight loss method doesn’t work for me, doesn’t mean I won’t find one that works for me in the future!”
You are important, which means it’s necessary to take control of these thoughts so that your future looks nothing like your present. You deserve to feel good.
You probably already know that water is great for weight loss, but I thought I’d give you a quick update on new research on how much you should be actually drinking a day.
People used to say eight cups a day (for women – I believe they used to say around 10 cups for men), but now a new study is showing that you should be having more than that.
According to Mayo Clinic, women should be having 11.5 cups a day (2.7 liters) and men should be having 15.5 cups a day (3.7 liters).
So just make sure to keep yourself hydrated and drinking the correct amount and you’re all good! 😊
3. Calorie Deficit for Weight Loss
Ok, so I found this SUPER interesting. Apparently, and according to Harvard, reducing calories helps you lose weight no matter which of these three nutrients you’re emphasizing in your diet: carbohydrates, protein, and fat content.
Now you need all three of those to be healthy, as long as they’re done in moderation, so be careful of any diet that says you should cut one of them out completely. But, if you are on a diet that reduces the amount you take in of one of those three nutrients, just know that one of your biggest helpers is going to be a calorie deficit.
Just make sure you’re not starving yourself and figure out what is the correct amount of calories you should cut from your meals to be on a healthy calorie deficit.
Also, here are my tips for when I went on a calorie deficit and lost 15 pounds in one month with no exercise.
4. Fad Diets Should Be Done with Caution
I understand that there are fad diets out there that really do work, but I believe that the best way to lose weight and actually keep it off is to adopt a mindset and lifestyle of being healthy.
You’re doing this for the long term, to feel good inside and out. And fad diets have been shown to have negative effects on your health which is the exact opposite of what you want.
I feel that it’s best to eat what you want but in moderation and make sure to be taking in healthy foods that are going to nourish your body (the majority of the time), and over the course of a few weeks and months, you’re going to see positive changes to your body, that you love (study).
So make sure to do your research before you get on a diet or just start adopting new habits here and there that make you feel good and help you maintain a long-term healthy lifestyle.
5. Protein for Weight Loss
“Several clinical trials have found that consuming more protein than the recommended dietary allowance not only reduces body weight (BW), but also enhances body composition by decreasing fat mass while preserving fat-free mass (FFM) in both low-calorie and standard-calorie diets.”
– National Library of Medicine
Simply put, not only does protein keep you feeling fuller longer, but more protein also reduces weight and decreases fat in the body. Just make sure to understand what amount is good for your weight goals (so figuring out the calories) and how much extra of it you want in your daily diet.
6. Soluble Fiber
According to the National Library of Medicine, soluble fibers are a great way to stay satiated and decrease food cravings.
So what is soluble fiber? It’s a fiber that can blend with the water in the gut and has various health and weight loss benefits.
And here is a list of foods that have soluble fiber in them!
- Black beans
- Sweet Potatoes
- Kidney Beans
- Flax seeds
7. Sleep and Calorie Restriction Are a Great Weight Loss Combo
“Some studies suggest that sleep plays a role in weight loss, and specifically fat loss, during calorie restriction. In a study of people undergoing 14 days of calorie restriction, the participants lost less fat when they spent 5.5 h a day in bed than when they spent 8.5 h a day in bed.”
– National Library of Medicine
When it comes to weight loss, it’s a combination of great habits that are going to help you with this. And in this case, a calorie restriction + 8.5 hours in bed are a great combo for losing weight more effectively. So make sure to set a good time for yourself to go to bed so that you have a better chance of seeing your health and weight improve!
8. Stress Affects Weight Loss
I honestly think that getting rid of stress is great for you in general (it has so many health benefits!), but it’s also great for losing weight.
In a 2015 study, it was found that the women who participated in the study, burned 104 fewer calories than the women who weren’t stressed.
Our bodies metabolize slower when we’re under stress, so it’s important to find the key things in our daily life that are constantly stressing us out and find ways to eliminate these stressors. You don’t have to do it all at once, but as long as you’re taking note and finding small and even big ways to take care of them, you’re gonna be happier with your weight as well as your life in general.
9. Aerobics Training
In a study done in 2012, it was shown that the people who participated lost more weight doing aerobics training (AT) than resistance training (RT). And a combination of AT and RT did not benefit those in the study more than just doing AT.
Now, these studies were on people who were previously sedentary and started off as overweight, so it’s important to know that this is best for you if you find yourself in this spot.
Here are some easy ways to do aerobics:
- Jumping rope
- Using a stationary bike
10. Rapid Weight Loss Vs. Slow Weight Loss
There are so many ways to lose weight and some are more quick while others take the “slow and steady wins the race,” approach. And it’s honestly up to you which one you decide to try.
In a study in 2017, both rapid and slow weight loss were found to reduce waist and hip circumference, total body water, lean body mass, and body fat mass. It also showed a reduction in the resting metabolic rate.
However, with slow weight loss, there was more reduction in the waist and hip circumference, percentage of body fat, and fat mass. And with rapid weight loss, there was a decrease in fat free mass, total body water, lean body mass, and resting metabolic rate.
But, rapid weight loss showed improved insulin resistance and reduction in bad cholesterol, as well as other benefits. So at the end of the day, it’s just good to know what you’re working with and the benefits and drawbacks of both methods.
11. Pre-Portioned Meals
When you’re first trying to find a way to lose weight consistently, I honestly think that pre-portioned meals are a great way to do this. In a study, it was found that pre-portioned meals substituted for one or more meals in the day, led to greater weight loss than a self-selected diet.
So if you have the time in your week to do this, then I think it’ll make your weight loss just a bit easier if you already have a healthy and tasty meal ready and waiting for you in the fridge.
Oh, and you might like my list of yummy healthy dinner recipes to try this with!
12. High-Fat Foods Are Great for Weight Loss
Well, some of them are at least! 🙂
Healthy fats are incredible for your health in general (source 1, source 2), but they can also aid in weight loss as seen in diets such as the Mediterranean diet (study).
So here’s an easy list of healthy tasty fats you can incorporate into your diet for your weight loss and health journey:
- Dark chocolate
- Fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel
- Whole eggs
- Chia seeds
- Nuts such as almonds and walnuts
- Full-fat yogurt
- Extra virgin olive oil
13. Keeping a Food Diary
In a 2019 6-month study, it was found that women who self-monitored what they ate were able to lose 10% of their body fat.
And it really does make sense! When you’re consciously looking at what you’re taking in, you start to realize, “Hey, maybe I do eat too much of that kind of food,” or “Maybe I can have this, but just a smaller portion of it.”
You become intentional and able to start putting more things into your diet that are good for you or even limiting healthy food options that are high in calories. Honestly, that last point is very important; so many times I’ve eaten WAY too much of a certain food just because, “It’s healthy!” But then I end up hurting my weight loss goals because I took in too many calories.
So while you might not keep a food diary forever, it’s honestly a great way to become mindful of what you eat and start growing in self-control and loving your body. ❤️
I really hope this list of weight loss facts was helpful to you and your journey toward living a more healthy lifestyle!
I know it can be VERY hard at times, but I just want to quickly encourage you that you can do this! Keep on going, keep on learning, keep on loving yourself, and you’re going to make it! 🥰