How to Lose Weight Fast: 12 Expert Strategies to Stay Free From Excess Pounds

As counter intuitive as it may seem, when it comes to weight loss the fast way is the slow way. Crash diets and extreme exercise regimes may promise quick results, but they rarely lead to sustainable weight loss. 

Ashley Johnson

10 Feb 2024

How To Lose Weight Fast

As a fitness expert and healthy lifestyle enthusiast, I’ve spent dozens of hours exploring the most effective, scientifically-validated strategies for those looking to learn how to lose weight fast.

Here’s a sneak peek at what this guide offers:

  • Embrace a Lasting Mindset: It’s time to bid farewell to fleeting fads and ineffective crash diets. Our focus lies in cultivating sustainable lifestyle modifications that not only promote rapid weight loss but also enrich your body, elevate your energy levels, and lift your well-being to new heights.
  • Set SMART Targets: Instead of being overwhelmed by the thought of drastic weight loss, aim for manageable milestones—shoot for losing 5% to 10% of your total body weight to start with. Revel in the victory of each pound shed.
  • Prioritize Nutritious Eating: Cast aside the notion that calories are all that count. To speed up the weight loss process, turn your attention to nutritionally-rich edibles: vibrant fruits, crisp vegetables, lean cuts of protein, hearty whole grains, and essential healthy fats.

#1 – Sugars and Starches : Take It Easy

Let’s face it, sugars and starches are like that frenemy. They seem sweet but secretly sabotage your weight loss efforts. These two are the crafty culprits behind those uninvited extra pounds. But why? Let’s take a scientific detour. Our bodies harbour a critical hormone called insulin. It is like a traffic controller for our blood sugar levels.

When we pamper our taste buds with an overload of sugars and starches, our insulin has to hustle. This rush can trigger insulin spikes and drops. It leads to untimely hunger pangs, cravings, and potential overeating. Our bodies don’t instantly burn any sugars and starches for energy. Any that don’t get a one-way ticket to our fat reserves[1].

So, which foods should we be wary of? The usual suspects high in sugars and starches include :

  • Bread
  • Pasta
  • Rice
  • Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Dessert Treats 😭

These foods sneak in empty calories that fail to nourish us. Instead, they stir up our appetite and slow down our metabolism.

Ease up on sugars and starches to avoid insulin spikes that lead to fat storage, hunger, and cravings. Opt for wholesome proteins, fats, and complex carbohydrates for sustained fullness and metabolism boost.

#2 – Protein, Fat, and Fiber: Manage Hunger

Imagine this: It’s mid-afternoon. You’re feeling peckish, even though lunch was just a couple of hours ago. Sounds familiar? You’re not alone. But what if I told you that you can feel full and satisfied for longer by adding more protein, fat, and fiber to your meals?

Protein, fat, and fiber play a crucial role in regulating our hunger hormones, like ghrelin, leptin, and peptide YY[2,3]. They also slow down digestion and make you feel full for longer. More importantly, they help keep those pesky blood sugar spikes and crashes at bay. This prevents cravings and overeating. Essentially, they’re your secret weapons for maintaining a healthy appetite.

Portion Control: A Quick Guide

As a general guideline, aim for about 0.8 to 1.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight each day. For fat, aim for about 20 to 35% of your daily calorie intake. And for fiber, aim for 25 to 38 grams a day.
But how exactly do you keep track of your portions? You can use your hand as a guide, get a food scale, or even use an app for tracking. The key is to balance your macronutrients at each meal and snack. You might also consider following a specific diet plan. Choose keto, paleo, or vegan, based on your lifestyle and preferences.

Incorporate more protein, fat, and fiber into your meals to control hunger hormones, prolong fullness, and prevent blood sugar spikes—your ultimate appetite regulators for healthy weight management.

#3 – Water: Detox and Fat Burning

Water, my friends, is your body’s built-in detox system. It acts like an internal janitor, whisking away toxins and waste products from your body. As a bonus, it regulates your body temperature and metabolic rate. That turns your body into a fat-burning machine.

But what happens if you’re not hydrating enough? Enter the dreaded beast called dehydration. This sneaky monster can cause fatigue and headaches. It even tricks your body into thinking it’s hungry. So, keep your water bottle close by and sip away!

How Much Water to Drink for Optimal Weight Loss

The general guideline is at least 8 glasses or 2 liters per day. But for a more personalized approach, try drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day. If numbers aren’t your best friend, there are plenty of apps that can do the math for you.
And if plain water isn’t exciting enough, feel free to jazz it up with a slice of lemon, cucumber, or a sprig of mint. Herbal teas are another great option. You can also munch on water-rich foods like cucumber or watermelon.

Water serves as a natural detoxifier, aids in burning fat by boosting metabolism, and is essential for preventing dehydration which can mask itself as hunger. Aim for at least 8 glasses a day or half your body weight in ounces, and enhance the taste with fruits or herbs to keep it interesting

#4 – Alcohol: The Party-Pooper for Weight Loss

Let’s switch gears and talk about alcohol. It’s fun, it’s social, but when it comes to weight loss, it’s a major party-pooper. Alcohol is loaded with empty calories that offer zero nutritional value. Plus, it interferes with your liver function, slowing down your body’s fat-burning process. And let’s not forget, it can lower inhibitions and spike your appetite. Hello, midnight pizza binge!

Strategies to Limit Alcohol

The key is moderation. Aim for no more than one drink a day for women, and two for men. If you do drink, choose low-calorie options like light beer, wine, or vodka with soda water. But who says you can’t have fun without alcohol? Sparkling water, fresh fruit juice, or mocktails can be just as festive. If you’re serious about reducing alcohol, set a goal. Track your consumption. Find tasty alternatives. Reach out for support if needed.

Alcohol, with its empty calories and fat-burning inhibition, is a hindrance to weight loss; moderation and low-calorie alternatives, like sparkling water, can help maintain the merriment without the weight gain.

#5 – Exercise: Your Power Play to Burn Calories

Embarking on a healthier lifestyle can seem daunting, but exercise is your secret weapon, your magic bullet if you will. Exercise burns calories. It also boosts your heart rate and oxygen consumption. It stimulates the growth and repair of muscle tissue. More muscle means a higher metabolic rate[4]. You’ll be burning calories even when you’re relaxing on the sofa.

  • Cardio: Low or High Intensity activities : walking, running, swimming, etc.
    • Burns fat and improves cardiovascular health.
  • Strength Training: Weightlinfting, Crossfit, Weight Training
    • Boosts muscle strength, endurance, and metabolism.
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) : short, intense bursts of exercise with rest periods.
    • Calorie burning powerhouse. Supercharges fat loss and metabolism in record time.
  • Cardio: Aim for 3 to 5 sessions a week, each lasting 20 to 60 minutes.
  • Strength Training: Shoot for 2 to 3 sessions a week, each lasting 15 to 30 minutes.
  • HIIT: Aim for 1 to 2 sessions a week, each lasting 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Groove to your favorite tunes while you exercise.
  • Join a workout group or class for some fun social interaction.
  • Spice up your routine by trying new activities.
Exercise, varying from cardio to HIIT, not only ignites calorie burn but also elevates heart health, muscle growth, and metabolic rate. The WHO suggests a tailored mix of exercises weekly to keep workouts engaging and effective, blending enjoyment with fitness goals.

#6 – Calories and Macros: Weight Management Mastery

Think of calories as the fuel that powers your lively, vibrant self every day. Macros, or macronutrients, are the building blocks that construct our food. They include carbs, protein, and fats. They affect the calories’ quantity. Together, they propel your health journey forward. 

Factors like your age, height, weight, activity level, and weight loss goals all come into play. To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume, creating a calorie deficit[5].

It’s like balancing your health checkbook. As for macros, a popular guideline suggests a balance of 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% fat. But these are flexible numbers. Feel free to adjust them based on your unique needs and preferences.


You’ve got your calorie and macro targets. Great! But how do you ensure that you’re staying on track? Say hello to food scales, measuring cups, and handy tracking apps. Keeping a record of your intake is like having a personal food diary. It helps you make informed choices and keeps you accountable.


If progress feels slow, don’t lose heart. Be flexible and adjust your calorie and macro intake based on your progress and your body’s cues. A good starting point? Try tweaking them by 10% every week. 

Instead of getting hung up on daily fluctuations, focus on overall trends and patterns. They’re like a compass guiding you on your journey, giving you insightful feedback. They also help you plan your next steps.


Master weight management by understanding calories as your daily fuel and macronutrients—carbs, proteins, fats—as vital components. Tailor your calorie and macro intake based on personal factors, monitor progress with tracking tools, and fine-tune percentages to optimize weight loss and overall health.

#7 – The Art of Meal Planning

Ever had that takeout menu look way too tempting after a long day? Trust me, we’ve all been there. But I’ve got a game-changing solution for you : meal planning. 

Meal planning is like your personal culinary GPS. It helps you control your portions by planning your meals and snacks in advance. This ensures you don’t veer off your health route. Plus, it helps curb the chances of impulse eating and encourages a balanced diet.

I hear you saying, “Ashley, I barely have time to tie my shoes, let alone meal plan!” But trust me, it’s easier than you think. You could start with a simple weekly menu or a grocery list, or try a meal prep service if it fits your budget. Not only will you save time and money, but you’ll also reduce food waste. Win-win, right? 

Creating Tasty and Nutrient-Rich Meals But eating healthily doesn’t mean forgoing taste. Experiment with salads, soups, wraps, and smoothies. Make sure each meal and snack fits into your daily calorie and macro budget. Make sure they are brimming with fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Because yes, healthy can be tasty!

Don’t be shy about using herbs, spices, sauces, or toppings. They can elevate your meal, making it more satisfying and enjoyable. After all, healthy eating is about enjoying a variety of foods that make you feel good. In fact, a study by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine[6] found that meal preparation leads to healthier eating habits and more effective weight control. So yes, meal planning is definitely worth the effort.

Meal planning can be seen as a strategic guide to dietary health, portion control and balanced nutrition. It also reduces the urge to opt for spontaneous fast-food choices by encouraging deliberate grocery purchases and meal utilization.

#8 – The Sleep, Stress, and Weight Link

“Sleep and weight? What’s the connection?” I hear you ask. Well, my friends, there’s a strong link between your sleep patterns and your weight. Lack of sleep can mess with your appetite, slow down your metabolism, and mess with your insulin sensitivity. And it doesn’t stop there! Insufficient sleep can also spike your stress levels, creating a vicious cycle that impacts your overall well-being.

The National Sleep Foundation prescribes 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night for most adults[7]. But remember: It’s not just about quantity, quality is equally important. You want to wake up feeling refreshed, not reaching for that fifth cup of Joe.

  1. Say No to Bedtime Stimulants: Yes, this includes your beloved coffee and evening drinks. They can disrupt your sleep onset and overall sleep quality.
  2. Stick to a Regular Sleep Schedule: Aim to hit the hay and wake up at the same time every day, yes, even on weekends. This helps regulate your body’s internal clock and could enhance your sleep quality.
  3. Embrace relaxation techniques. Try integrating practices like meditation or deep breathing into your bedtime routine. It will help you wind down.
  • Meditate: This practice can improve awareness and instill a sense of calm.
  • Breathe Deeply: Deep breathing can help calm your nervous system, reducing stress levels.
  • Journaling can be a therapeutic way to express emotions. It can also help brainstorm solutions to stressors.
  • Professional Help: If stress is becoming too daunting to handle alone, don’t hesitate to seek help from a therapist or counselor.
Prioritize sleep to regulate metabolism and appetite, and to control stress. Embrace a regular sleep routine, relaxation practices, and stress reduction techniques like meditation to enhance well-being.

#9 – How to Lose Weight Fast: Consistency and Patience

Have you ever felt envious of someone’s easy weight loss and wondered their secret? The truth is, it’s not about a revolutionary diet fad or an intense workout routine that promises to shed pounds overnight. The real pillars of lasting success are consistency and patience.

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a healthy body. Like a well-crafted masterpiece, it takes time and dedication to see it through. Consistency is your chisel, carving out healthy habits. Patience is the artist. It avoids the dreaded yo-yo effect by not rushing the process when losing weight, only to gain it back.

Starting a diet or a workout routine is a breeze. It’s staying motivated and focused that presents the uphill climb. Here are some tried strategies to help you stick to the path:

  • Set realistic and specific goals. Aiming to “lose weight” is vague. How much weight do you want to lose? By when? The more specific your goals, the better.
  • Track your progress. Seeing how far you’ve journeyed can be a great motivator. It’s like leaving breadcrumbs on your path, reminding you of your accomplishments.
  • Reward yourself. Hit a milestone? Go ahead, treat yourself! (Just not with a cheat meal!)
  • Find support. Having others on the same journey can be a significant source of encouragement. This can be a workout buddy or an online community.

The journey to a healthy lifestyle isn’t a smooth, paved road. You must overcome challenges and setbacks. Embrace them and learn from them.

  • Learn from your mistakes. Did you overindulge at a party? Reflect on what you could do differently next time.
  • Forgive yourself. You’re human. Slip-ups are a part of the process. Don’t let one mistake derail your entire journey.
  • Adapt your plan. If something isn’t working, change it. Health and fitness aren’t one-size-fits-all.

Losing weight is only half the battle. The real challenge, and victory, is keeping it off. Here’s how you can win the war:

  • Continue your healthy habits. They helped you lose the weight – they’ll help you keep it off too.
  • Monitor your weight. Regular weigh-ins can help you catch any changes before they snowball into a problem.
  • Make lifestyle changes. A diet is a temporary solution, but a lifestyle change is permanent. Make healthy habits a part of your everyday life.
The secret to rapid weight loss lies not in quick fixes but in the enduring principles of consistency and patience, coupled with realistic goal-setting and a supportive community for lasting success.

#10 – The Hidden Dangers of Processed Foods

So, we’ve all been there, right? A crazy day, and the quick and easy comfort of a processed meal is just too tempting to resist. But, let’s hit pause for a minute. Let’s take a closer look at what we’re really feeding our bodies when we reach for that bag of chips or frozen dinner.

Processed foods are the silent saboteurs of your health. They’re often packed with calories, sugar, salt, and many additives. These seem more suited to a chemistry lab than your dinner plate. And the impact on your health? Increased blood pressure, spiking cholesterol levels, and blood sugar roller coasters. Plus, they’re a major contributor to inflammation and body fat. In short, processed foods are a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

These foods have been heavily processed. This means they’ve been fried, baked, or preserved with artificial ingredients, chemicals, or preservatives. They’re often high in trans fats and refined grains and loaded with added sugars.

  • Chips
  • Cookies
  • Cakes
  • Frozen Meals
  • Fast Food

Don’t worry, there’s light at the end of this processed food tunnel. There are plenty of delicious, healthy alternatives that won’t compromise your health. I’m talking about fresh, whole, minimally processed foods.

  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Seeds

They’re a great source of healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and natural sugars. Plus, they have vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.

Processed foods are deceptive culprits in undermining health, with their high content of calories, unhealthy additives, and lack of vital nutrients – favoring whole foods can counter these hidden dangers.

#11 – Green Tea: Your Health-Boosting Weapon

Now, here’s a hot tip. Green tea is more than just a calming cup of comfort. This superstar beverage is a powerhouse of antioxidants and caffeine. They work together to rev up your metabolism and ignite your fat burning. Imagine it as a gentle wake-up call for your nervous system.

It sparks thermogenesis, your body’s heat production. It also accelerates lipolysis, the breakdown of fats. The secret behind it? The antioxidants in green tea, known as catechins, and the caffeine content work together. They boost your metabolism and supercharge your fat-burning abilities. Trust me, your body will be doing a jig of joy!

So, you’re now thinking, “Ashley, how many cups of this wellness wonder should I be drinking?” Well, the University of Maryland Medical Center recommends 3 to 5 cups of green tea a day[8]. However, remember, we’re all different. Your ideal green tea intake will depend on various factors. Your weight, health status, caffeine tolerance, and personal preference can all influence .

Regularly sipping on green tea can lead to some impressive perks. Think of enhanced weight loss, decreased risk of chronic diseases, and a fortified immune system. It’s like a wellness potion in a cup!

As with any potent brew, balance is key. Green tea can provide a much-needed health, energy, and mood boost. Be careful though, drinking too much or too late in the day can lead to potential drawbacks. These include insomnia, anxiety, and dehydration.

The benefits and drawbacks are directly linked to the quantity, quality, and timing of your green tea intake. Moderation is the secret to maximizing health benefits and minimizing side effects.

Now, for the fun part! Brewing the perfect cup of green tea can feel like a mini wellness ritual. Start with loose leaves if you can. Steep them for 3 to 5 minutes, and voila, you’ve got the perfect brew! Want to add a little zing? Try a squeeze of lemon, a spoonful of honey, or even a sprig of mint. These little tweaks not only enhance the taste but also help preserve the flavor, aroma, and all those fantastic antioxidants in your cup. 

Green tea, with its potent mix of antioxidants and caffeine, enhances weight loss and health. Just remember to balance intake to avoid side effects. Enjoy up to 3-5 cups daily for a metabolism and mood boost.

#12 – Use Probiotics For Better Gut Health and Weight Management

You’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn that many everyday foods are teeming with probiotics. For instance, yogurt and kefir are full of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria. These friendly bacteria are ready to work their magic in your gut. Fermented foods like sauerkraut and kimchi are also probiotic champions. They boast strains like leuconostoc and lactobacilli. But if fermented foods aren’t your cup of tea, fear not, my friend!

There’s a whole universe of probiotic supplements out there, neatly packed into capsules. They contain a rich variety of strains and doses, so there’s something for everyone. Remember, it’s all about finding the right balance for your unique needs.

Just like any health journey, the probiotic path has its peaks and troughs. On the sunny side, probiotics have been hailed for improving digestion, boosting immunity, and even lifting your mood (hello, happiness!).

But it’s not always a smooth ride. Some may experience gas, bloating, or in rare cases, allergic reactions. The effects can depend on the type, amount, and quality of probiotics you consume. They can also depend on your individual health status.

How do you cherry-pick the best probiotics for your unique goals and preferences? How do you harness their powers safely and effectively? Here are my top tips:

  1. Turn detective with the labels. Investigate the ingredients, potency, and expiration date to ensure you’re getting the best.
  2. Have a heart-to-heart with your doctor. This is paramount if you’re on medications or have specific health concerns.
  3. Follow the yellow brick road (or the instructions). Make sure you’re taking the right dose at the right time to maximize the benefits.
Integrate probiotics into your diet through foods or supplements for improved gut health and weight management. Stay mindful of the potential side effects and consult with healthcare professionals for personalized advice.

The Bottom Line

Losing weight quickly is not about following a restrictive diet or intense workout plan. It’s about making sustainable lifestyle changes that promote overall health and well-being. Incorporate these 12 proven strategies into your daily routine. Doing so will help you lose weight and improve your physical, mental, and emotional health.

Lasting weight loss is achieved through sustainable habits, not quick fixes. Embrace these strategies for a healthier you, and with consistency and patience, weight loss will follow. Remember to consult healthcare professionals as needed. Cheers to your success!

Ashley Johnson

I’m a passionate advocate for holistic wellbeing and the proud founder of My Vitality Hacks. My dedication lies in guiding others towards a healthier and happier life, empowering individuals one step at a time.

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