To lose one pound of fat you need to take a number of factors into account. First you need to understand the role of fat in the body, what it takes to lose fat and why fat is the cause of a number of diseases. There are many ways to do that and in this article we discuss the 5 most effective ways to lose one pound of fat.
What is fat?
Fat is unused energy stored in the body. This is a very simple explanation of fat but is enough to understand that fat is the result of excess energy (calories) consumed through food that is not burned in the body and as a result gets accumulated in the muscles and body organs. When we consume food our body processes it and takes the energy needed to carry out the normal body functions as well as give us energy to cope with our physical activities. When the calories we consume through food are too many and not used by the body as energy they are stored in the fat reserves.
Fat is not necessarily bad, on the contrary it is vital for the normal functioning of the body as it is used for building up cells, producing hormones and keeping the temperature of the body at normal levels. What is not needed is excess fat that is the cause of a number of cardiovascular diseases and the major cause of obesity.
How to lose fat?
In mathematical terms one pound of fat is about 3500 calories. In other words when you consume more calories than your body burns and this number is above 3500 you gain one pound, on the other hand when you consume 3500 calories more than you consume you lose one pound. It is a straightforward calculation and to lose one pound of fat you need to ensure that the number of calories burned are constantly more than you consume.
For example if you can manage to create a 500 calorie deficit per day then in one week you will lose one pound. If your target is to lose 10 pounds in 2 months then you need to burn 580 calories more per day (10 pounds x 3500 calories = 35000 / 60 days). Have in mind that the minimum number of calories your body needs per day is about 1800-2000 so it is not recommended to go beyond this number. Here are 5 of the best ways to lose one pound of fat.
1. Avoid full fat foods
Since the only source of energy is the foods and drinks we consume, by minimizing the calories we eat and drink we increase our chances of losing weight and fat. So, try to avoid full fat foods, processed foods or foods that contain sugars and artificial substances. Instead prefer low-fat foods, sugar free drinks and lots of fruits instead of snacks and sweets. Read carefully the food label of each food you consume and ensure that it is low in fats, calories and sugars. Organic and natural foods are by definition healthier and have less calories and fat than non-organic food items.
2. Prefer fat burning foods
Although there is no such thing as fat burning foods, you can give preference to foods that are fat friendly. For example low fat milk and low fat dairy products, almonds, fish, oats, whole grain, lean meat and green tea are foods that have minimum amount of fats and they are recommended for a healthy diet. Some of these can even help you burn more calories by eating them than the calories they contain and they usually called negative calorie foods.
3. Fiber, fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are full of fiber, vitamins and minerals; Fiber has the special characteristic of keeping you full for longer periods and is also wasted from the body without adding to the fat reserves. This is the reason that all diets and weight loss programs suggest that you eat 5-6 servings of fruits daily. With fruits you keep your stomach full and away from other full fat foods.
4. Cardio and fat burning exercises
Dieting is the best way to protect your body from consuming fat but the best way to lose the accumulated body fat is through exercise. Exercise is the only way to accelerate the fat burning process and burn more calories. Not all exercises are equal when it comes to fat loss since exercises that accelerate the heart beat rate generate better results. The most common form is cardio exercises (walking, running, aerobics, cycling, swimming, tennis, squash, climbing etc.).
For even better results you can combine strength training exercises with cardio. Remember your goal is to increase your fat burning process so what is needed is less but more intense repetitions of the exercises (with minimum breaks) and not long repetitions with long breaks. Your goal is to push yourself to the limits so that the body will utilize the fat reserves for energy. This action is needed to actually lose more calories and in turn fat from the body. Exercising does not only make you weigh less but also look better.
5. Consistency is the key for fat loss
We mentioned above that in order to lose fat you need to constantly generate a calorie deficit between the amount of calories consumed and the amount of calories burned (remember 1 pounds = 3500 calories). The key for long term success is not to do that only once or a couple of days per week but to constantly keep the calories burned more than the calories consumed.
So you need to create a diet and exercise plan and stick to that plan for some time (at least a couple of months). Make sure that you exercise 4-5 times per week for at least 45 minutes per session. Combine your cardio exercises with weight lifting and strength training exercises and ensure that you follow a healthy balanced diet with moderate consumption of fats and carbohydrates. If you do that consistently for a number of weeks you will notice results both when you weigh in and in your appearance.