25 Science-Based Tips For Losing Weight (Number 12 Is A Weird One)

Science-based tips for weight lossLosing weight can be a difficult process.

But sometimes it can seem like everyone else knows exactly how to do it.

If everyone is so great at giving advice for losing weight, why isn’t everyone 100% healthy?

Because their advice is usually wrong.

It’s as simple as that.

Would you rather listen to your great uncle Ross (whose beer belly seems to be growing every year) or accredited scientists and doctors?

Let’s listen to the doctors and make sure that this is the year you finally lose that belly fat and get the beach body you’ve been dreaming of forever.

Let’s dive in!


1. Eat Protein For Breakfast

High protein steak breakfast

In his 4 Hour Body book Tim Ferriss explains how his dad lost 23 pounds in 2 months.

What did his father do?

He started consuming 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up.

Now you don’t have to consume 30 grams of protein to see the fat-loss effects. You don’t even have to eat it within 30 minutes of waking up.

Simply swapping your regular breakfast for eggs or any other protein-rich food can help you lose a ton of weight.

In this article in the International Journal of Obesity, they state that “egg breakfast enhances weight loss,” but you still have to do some sort of exercise even if it’s simply walking for 30 minutes per day. (Another source in PubMed)


2. Drink More Water

Water isn’t just good for helping your brain work better. (ScienceDirect, European Journal of Clinical Nutrition)

Drinking more water can also help you lose weight more effectively.

In fact, drinking 500 mL of water can increase your metabolism by 30% for 90 minutes (PubMed). This means that your body automatically burns more calories no matter what you do.

Cool, huh?

If you drink 500 mL of water 30 minutes before eating you can decrease your hunger and thus lose more weight. (PubMed)


3. Go On A Low Carb Diet

Low carb meal

Going on a low carb diet can help you lose more weight than standard low-fat, and other diets.

Once again this is something that Tim Ferriss suggests in his book, but he’s not a doctor so let’s look at the actual doctoral publications.

There are numerous studies about this, and instead of linking to all of them here is an article on Authority Nutrition summarizing 23 of them.


4. Have Only Healthy Food Around You

This might seem like an obvious one, but if you keep healthy snacks on your desk, near your couch, etc, you are more likely to eat them than unhealthy ones.

You could have a bowl of nuts at your work desk, a fruit-bowl near your couch, or some baby-carrots, a yogurt, or a healthy granola bar.


5. Eat Before Going Grocery Shopping

Grocery shopping

We’ve all had it happen to us.

We go to the grocery store hungry and everything looks good. We pile tons of food into our cart, come home, eat, and then realize that half of the stuff you bought you don’t even want.

When you shop hungry you’re not just wasting money. You’re also hindering your weight-loss goals because you’re more likely to buy unhealthy snacks and foods if you’re shopping hungry.

Save your wallet and your tummy. Don’t shop when you’re hungry.


6. Use Smaller Plates

The size of plates have been steadily increasing, which means that you have to put more and more food on them to feel full. (PubMed)

If you use a smaller plate you’ll end up eating less and still feeling full after because of the way your brain works. (PubMed)

A smaller plate with food piled on top of it will trick your brain into thinking that you’re eating more, compared to a large plate with the same amount of food.


7. Don’t Drink Calories

Sugary soft drinks

When we say don’t drink calories we mean don’t drink soft drinks like coke (yes, even coke zero), don’t drink “fruit juice” (the store bought fruit juice has the same amount of sugar as coke), and minimize the amount of sugar and creamer in your coffee.

If you love juice, then buy fruits and make your own. Studies like this one have shown that fruit juice has nearly the same amount of sugar as an equivalent amount of coke.

Milk is healthy, but it can still be fattening so try decreasing the amount of milk you take in. There’s a reason why there is a GOMAD (gallon of milk a day) “diet” that can help you gain over 30 pounds in 30 days.

P.S. Coke zero or any other zero-calorie drinks are terrible for you. Don’t drink them.


8. Eat More Protein

This one goes hand in hand with tips number 1 and 3. Eating more protein overall means that you’ll probably eat more for breakfast and that you’ll probably decrease the amount of carbs you take in.

A high protein diet can increase your metabolism by 100 calories per day, and you’ll feel fuller which means you’ll eat less throughout the day. (PubMed)


9. Sleep More And Better

Woman sleeping in bed

I’m sure you know that the average adult needs 6-8 hours of sleep per night.

The question is, are you an average adult?

You might need 10 hours of sleep, or maybe you’re fine on 6 hours of sleep. Try sleeping for different amounts of times for a week at a time and see how you feel. You might be surprised at what you find.

Bad sleep also hinders your ability to lose weight and is shown to be one of the highest risk factors for obesity. (PubMed)


10. Don’t Watch TV/Videos While Eating

Popcorn while watching TV

Watching TV while eating can cause “mindless eating” where you don’t pay attention to how much you’re eating and what you’re eating.

This might not necessarily be a problem if you already have the food that you’re going to eat on your small plate and you have no junk food in the house, but otherwise the temptation might be too great and you won’t be able to lose weight.

Consider this: eating while watching TV is “associated with poor eating behaviors in adolescents” (PubMed). You might be stronger than that, but why take the risk?


11. Eat More Fiber

Eating fiber with every meal can increase the feeling of fullness and help you lose weight. (PubMed)


12. Eat Spicy

Red chili peppers

Can eating spicy really help you lose weight?

Not all spicy foods will, but some of them can and will help you reach your ultimate goals.

Cayenne pepper boosts your metabolism and reduces your appetite which is great if you want to lose weight. (PubMed and PubMed)


13. Do Resistance Training

Everyone wants to have more muscles and less fat, right?

However resistance training exercises can be confusing. Do you really need to go to the gym 7 days a week for 2 hours per day to increase your muscle mass?


In fact as little as 20 minutes of resistance training per day 3 days a week can increase your muscles mass and help you lose that pesky fat. (PubMed)

No more second guessing or questioning whether what you’re doing is right.


14. Ditch Simple Carbs

Bread - a simple carb

This goes hand in hand with many of the tips above.

A simple explanation of what simple carbs are is this: it’s the white foods.

White bread, table sugar, cookies, cereal, white pasta, white rice, and potatoes. (Potatoes are technically complex carbs, but they tend to act like simple carbs inside the body which isn’t good.) (Pubmed)


15. Chew Slowly

Chewing your food slowly can help you lose weight.

Don’t believe me?

Your brain doesn’t register the food that you’re eating right away which is why you might feel bad after eating an appetizer, the full meal, and a dessert afterwards.

You still feel hungry right after eating the meal because your brain hasn’t registered everything yet, so you order the dessert. However your stomach is already full and eating more just makes you feel bad and prevents you from losing weight.

Chewing slowly can decrease the number of calories you consume and also increases the production of hormones linked to losing weight. (PubMed)


16. Drink Green Tea

Cup of green tea with leaves

This might seem like strange advice, but it really works.

Green tea contains something called catechins, which are antioxidants that can lead to fat burning when combined with caffeine. (ScienceDirect and PubMed)

Do you know what the best part is?

Green tea also has caffeine in it.

This means that by simply drinking green tea you can help yourself lose weight, and if you combine this tip with tip number 7, you’ll be on your way to losing more and more weight!


17. Take Glucomannan

Studies show that a supplement called Glucomannan can help you lose weight and feel more full.

Glucomannan is a fiber that absorbs water and stays in your stomach for a while, which helps you eat less and lose more weight. (PubMed)


18. Have A Cheat Day

Cheat day burger and fries

Always preventing yourself from eating sweets, simple carbs, and other yummy stuff is impossible.

That’s why they invented cheat days!

Pick a day of the week where you’ll allow yourself to eat whatever you want.

Throughout the week if you ever have a craving instead of acting on it, write yourself a note about what you were craving and tell yourself that you’ll eat that thing on your cheat day.

This helps you keep yourself motivated throughout the week because you’ll know that even if you don’t eat what you want to day, you can pig out on the cheat day of your choice.


19. Cut Back On Alcohol

Bottles of alcohol

Alcohol has all kinds of sneaky calories in it (the term beer belly is there for a reason), and while completely banishing it might be impossible, you should try to come back as much as you can.

The sneaky calories in alcohol can hurt your weight loss goals, but that’s not the only thing it does.

It can also prevent yourself from making good eating decisions, and it can hurt your performance in the gym which means you’ll be burning less calories for the same amount of effort. (PubMed)


20. Set Realistic Goals

Many of us set New Year’s resolutions without ever completing them.


Usually it’s because the goals look so big and threatening that we put it off until the next day, week, or month.

For some reason we like to think that the future me will have more control over himself and that he will finally go to the gym.

That doesn’t happen which is why you need to set realistic goals.

Instead of setting a goal of going to the gym every day for an hour, or even going to the gym at least 3 times a week do something simpler.

Start out by setting a very small goal like walking for 15 minutes every other day. Once you do that for 2-3 weeks, a habit should start to form and you can change up your goal and make it a bit harder.

Now instead of walking for 15 minutes every other day, let’s walk for 30 minutes every other day, or let’s jog for 10 minutes every other day, or let’s do some pushups, squats, and planks for 15 minutes every day.


21. Make It A Habit

While habits might not necessarily take 21 days to form, you should still try to make it a habit of doing exercise, eating healthy, and trying to lose weight.

According to Tom Bartow there’s 3 phases to forming a habit:

  1. The Honeymoon: Everything is easy.
  2. The Fight-Thru: Things seem harder and you find it hard to convince yourself to keep doing what you were doing before. (This is the most important part of forming a habit. If you fight-thru 2-3 times, you’re onto the next stage.)
  3. Second Nature: Everything is great again, and you now have a habit. You might still be pushed back into the fight-thru stage from time to time, and that’s normal. You just have to keep going.


22. Decrease Stress

Stressed-out woman

Stress can trigger increased eating and cravings and no one wants that.

Try to get rid of stress in your life, and try meditating, doing yoga, or just de-stressing by spending time with a loved one. (PubMed)


23. Do HIIT

High Intensity Interval Training has been shown to be more effective than simple cardio. (PubMed)

What is HIIT?

It’s running or doing any form of exercise at a very high effort for a period of time and then doing the same exercise at a low-moderate effort for some time. Rinse and repeat, and you got yourself a HIIT workout!

It’s also known as interval training and you can learn much more, including the best HIIT workouts to do at home in our article about HIIT.


24. Bedroom Fun 😉

Sweating in bed can burn around 150 calories in half an hour and it reduces blood pressure, decreases stress, and it’s fun. (PubMed)

A couple having fun in bed


25. Start NOW

This is a big one.

Start now.


Don’t put it off and don’t make it your New Year’s Resolution.


Because it won’t work.

Your future you isn’t going to have more willpower than your current you, and your future you won’t randomly become excited about losing weight.

You yourself have to start now.

Start off with something small, and focus on one thing from this article that resonated with you the most.

Set a small goal and go for it.

We believe in you!

P.S. This post was inspired by these two articles. (Greatist and AuthorityNutrition)

2 replies
  1. Mat
    Mat says:

    Great Article! My girlfriend and I do 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 24 and 25! We are high fat paleo and practice intermittent fasting, so I’m not worried about the eating less part (which seems to be the core of 5, 6, 10, 15, and 17). Working on 22 and 23. I really like the list! You should add intermittent fasting in 🙂


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