How Long Does It Take To Lose Weight: loss is a frequent objective, regardless of whether you’re trying to enhance your health or reduce weight for a special occasion.
You might want to be aware of what a healthy weight loss pace is in order to set reasonable expectations.
The elements that may affect how long it may take you to lose weight are discussed in this article.
How weight loss occurs
When you consistently consume less calories than you burn each day, you start to lose weight.
The opposite is true: weight gain occurs when you continually consume more calories than you expend.
Your daily calorie intake is determined by the amount of calories you eat from all foods and drinks.
However, your daily calorie expenditure, also referred to as energy or calorie expenditure, is a little more complicated.
The three main parts of calorie expenditure are as follows:
- Resting metabolic rate (RMR). This is the number of calories your body needs to maintain normal bodily functions, such as breathing and pumping blood.
- Thermic effect of food (TEF). This refers to the calories used to digest, absorb, and metabolize food.
- Thermic effect of activity (TEA). These are the calories you use during exercise. TEA can also include non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT), which accounts for the calories used for activities like yard work and fidgeting.
You maintain your body weight if the number of calories you take in and expend is the same.
You must consume less calories than you burn, or raise your level of activity, in order to generate a negative calorie balance and lose weight.
Factors affecting weight loss
Your ability to reduce weight is significantly impacted by your fat-to-muscle ratio.
Women often have a higher ratio of fat to muscle than males, which results in a 5–10% lower RMR than men of the same height.
This indicates that on average, women burn 5–10% fewer calories while at rest than men. Thus, when on a diet with the same number of calories as women, men often lose weight more quickly.
Males lost 16 percent more weight than women in an 8-week research involving nearly 2,000 individuals on an 800-calorie diet, with relative weight loss of 11.8 percent in men and 10.3 percent in women.
The study, however, did not examine gender-based differences in the capacity to maintain weight loss, despite the fact that males typically lost weight more quickly than women.
Aside from other physical changes, aging is accompanied with changes in body composition, which include a rise in fat content and a loss in muscle mass.
A reduced RMR is a result of this alteration as well as other elements including the decreasing calorie requirements of your primary organs.
In actuality, RMRs for people over the age of 70 can be 20–25 percent lower than for people their own age.
With age, this RMR decline may make weight loss more challenging.
Your initial body mass and composition may also affect how quickly you can expect to lose weight.
It’s crucial to realize that differing relative weight losses (in percent) can correlate to the same absolute weight losses (in pounds) in different people. In the end, losing weight is a difficult task.
Based on your starting weight, age, sex, how many calories you consume each day, and how many calories you burn, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Body Weight Planner is a handy tool for estimating how much weight you can lose.
A person with less weight may lose a same percentage of their body weight (10/250 = 4% versus 5/125 = 4%), even though a heavier person may drop twice as much weight.
For instance, a person weighing 300 pounds (136 kg) may lose 10 pounds (4.5 kg) after increasing their physical activity for two weeks and reducing their daily calorie intake by 1,000.
To reduce weight, you must create a calorie deficit. How big of a calorie deficit you have determines how quickly you lose weight.
For instance, losing more weight than eating 200 fewer calories each day is likely to require 500 fewer calories each day for 8 weeks.But be careful not to create an excessive calorie deficit.
In addition to being unsustainable, doing so would put you at danger for vitamin shortages. Additionally, it may increase your likelihood of losing weight as muscle rather than fat.
Sleep is frequently neglected while being an essential element of weight loss.
Chronic sleep deprivation can drastically slow down weight loss and slow down how quickly you lose weight.
Sleep deprivation has been shown to boost your craving for high-calorie, nutrient-poor meals like cookies, cakes, sugary drinks, and chips after just one night.
In a 2-week trial, participants on a calorie-restricted diet were randomly assigned to sleep 5.5 or 8.5 hours every night.
In comparison to individuals who slept 8.5 hours every night, those who slept 5.5 hours every night lost 55 percent less body fat and gained 60 percent more lean body mass.
Consequently, type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and several malignancies are all closely associated with chronic sleep deprivation.
Several other factors can affect your weight loss rate, including:
- Medications. Many medications, such as antidepressants and other antipsychotics, can promote weight gain or hinder weight loss .
- Medical conditions. Illnesses, including depression and hypothyroidism, a condition in which your thyroid gland produces too few metabolism-regulating hormones, can slow weight loss and encourage weight gain .
- Family history and genes. There is a well-established genetic component associated with people who have overweight or obesity, and it may affect weight loss .
- Yo-yo dieting. This pattern of losing and regaining weight can make weight loss increasingly difficult with each attempt, due to a decrease in RMR .
Best diet for weight loss
Knowing which weight reduction plan is the best can be difficult because there are so many options available, all of them promise remarkable and rapid results.
There is no one best weight reduction diet, despite the claims of those who created and support the programs that they are superior to others.
For instance, low-carb diets like the keto may help you lose weight more quickly at first, but studies show no appreciable changes in weight reduction over the long run.
Your capacity to maintain a calorie-reduced, healthy eating pattern is what matters most.
However, many people find it challenging to maintain an extremely low calorie diet for an extended period of time, which is why most diets fail.
Only modestly lower your caloric intake, tailor your diet to your preferences and health, or consult a qualified dietitian to maximize your chances of success.
To maximize fat reduction and avoid or minimize muscle loss, combine diet with exercise, including both aerobic and resistance training.
You can further encourage weight loss and your general health by removing highly processed meals and adding more wholesome, nutritious foods, such vegetables, fruits, whole grains, healthy fats, and proteins.
Safe rates of weight loss
While the majority of individuals desire quick, rapid weight loss, it’s crucial to avoid losing too much weight too soon.
Your risk of gallstones, dehydration, and starvation may all rise if you lose weight quickly.
Additional negative implications of quick weight loss include:
- hair loss
- menstrual irregularities
- muscle loss
Though weight loss may start out more quickly at the beginning of a program, experts advise losing 1-3 pounds (0.45-1.36 kg) per week, or roughly 1% of your body weight.
Remember that losing weight is not a linear process as well. You might lose more one week than the next, or you might lose nothing at all.
Therefore, if your weight reduction slows down or plateaus for a few days, don’t get disheartened.
You might find it easier to stay on track if you keep a meal journal and weigh yourself frequently.
According to research, persons who self-monitor their weight and dietary intake are more likely to successfully lose weight and keep it off than those who don’t.
The bottom line
When you eat less calories than you burn, you lose weight.
Your beginning weight, gender, age, sleep, and the size of your calorie deficit are just a few of the many variables that influence how quickly you lose weight.
A safe and sustainable strategy to accomplish your goals is to aim to shed 1-3 pounds (0.45-1.36 kg) per week.