8 Weight-Loss Tips That Are Backed by Science
We’ll admit, we’ve all done slightly nontraditional things in the name of slimming down. Whether it’s juicing for three days straight (never again) or eating nothing but fruit for a week, extreme weight-loss methods are a dime in a dozen, and most of the time, they’re grounded in… absolutely nothing. To help sift out the facts from the fakers, we did our research and gathered eight interesting weight-loss tips that are backed by science—not a blogger on the internet who swears it worked for her.
From plate theory to food journaling, keep scrolling for eight scientifically proven ways to lose weight.
The next time you're shopping for tablewear, consider blue plates. Studies have shown that the color blue has the least appealing contrast to most food, acting as an appetite suppressant. The same study found that people ate more when their food matched the color of the plate. So, turn up the contrast when it comes to your meals.
A small study done at the University of Birmingham found that on average, people who drank water 30 minutes before some or all of their three meals a day lost between five to nine pounds over the course of about three months. The explanation is simple: drinking water fills you up, and makes you feel less hungry. Another reason: Often when you’re dehydrated, your body will tell your you’re hungry to get water into your system, even if you’re actually not. Thus, making sure your body is well-hydrated will keep overeating at bay.
Around 1700 participants provides that keeping a food diary can double a person’s weight loss—those in the study who kept daily food records lost twice as much weight as those who kept no records. You can read more about the study here.
Want to beat your belly fat, once and for all? Some research shows that weight training might actually be more effective than just jogging and running. Study results found that women who did twice weekly weight training prevented an increase in belly fat than those who did not. However, in another study comparing aerobic exercise with resistance training, researchers found that aerobic exercise was the most effective and efficient way to lose belly fat. It also improved fasting insulin resistance, as well as reduced liver enzymes and fasting triglyceride levels—all known risk factors for diabetes and heart disease. So, the jury is out on this one—but we think you can never go wrong with a combination of the two. Here are five more small changes you can do to beat belly fat.
Next time a sugar craving hits, try this trick: visualise yourself eating whatever it is your craving. A study from Carnegie Mellon found that doing this can help you eat less of whatever it is you were craving. “To some extent, merely imagining an experience is a substitute for actual experience,” said Joachim Vosgerau, who was part of the research team that conducted the study. “The difference between imagining and experiencing may be smaller than previously assumed.” Excuse us while we visualise ourselves eating, um, everything.
Here’s an interesting thought: turning down the thermostat could help kick your body’s metabolism up and help you lose weight. According to a study published in the journal Diabetes, researchers found that subjects who slept in a room at 66.2 degrees had an increase in brown fat (also called “good fat”—the kind that helps you burn calories while you sleep). During the warmer months, these results were reversed. Sure, this isn't the only method you should be using to lose weight, but it certainly won't hurt.
If you’re deciding between waking up early to work out or hitting the gym after work, always choose the morning workout. Why? Studies show that when you work out in the morning, you have more energy and get better results. Plus, getting your workout in first thing gives you a sense of achievement—and we all know how easy it is to make excuses when 6 p.m. rolls around.
You can read more about the best time of day to work out right here.
Were you surprised by these weight-loss tips? If you’re curious about how health bloggers stay fit, click here.