10 Ways To Achieve Healthy Natural Weight Loss

Healthy Weight Loss

I’m not overweight now, but according to the BMI (body mass index) charts, I’ve been obese. At one point I knew I needed to lose some weight, and I chose to do it naturally. Here are some of the things I learned along the way.

Ways To Lose Weight Naturally

1. Move more

I’ll admit I’m out of shape, but since getting a job at a local college, I swear everything is uphill! It’s actually kind of nice because I know I’m moving more. Going to the grocery store? Don’t park close to the door. Park as far out in the parking lot as you safely can. Walking even a few more steps like this a day can really help. Take the stairs, or walk on the escalator.

2. Eat healthful fats

Don’t cut all fats out of your diet. Your body needs fats to function well. Did you know your brain consists mainly of fats? If you cut most of the fat out of your diet, your body will start to hoard it and you’ll gain weight instead of losing it. Eating healthful fats will also signal to your brain that you feel full, thus curbing your appetite. A good rule of thumb is to consume 20 grams of healthful fats per day. And that doesn’t mean all in one cheeseburger! Remember, fat doesn’t turn to fat. You can choose good fats like olive oilcoconut oil, and real butter from pastured cows (like this brand).

3. Stay away from fad diets

Most fad diets don’t work. They’re designed to get you to lose a lot of weight at first so they seem enticing. The sad truth is that most of the first weight you lose is water. There are a few things that may help though. The “Cabbage Soup Diet” does seem to work. It’s believed that the sulfur and fiber helps you to shed pounds. And all that water can’t hurt either! And forget the low/no carb diets. Your body needs carbohydrates. Just choose wisely here too, like sprouted whole grain bread (sprouted is easier to digest), not Twinkies.

4. Choose water over sugary drinks

Just drinking water can help you to feel full so that you eat less. Ice water can help some as it takes more energy for your body to bring cold water down to the temperature that your body can use it. Water also helps your body to function properly. It acts as a transportation system for vitamins and minerals. A word of caution though: don’t drink too much water at one time. Your brain and blood need salts to be kept in balance or they can cause problems, some serious. Some people have died from drinking too much water. A good rule of thumb is 8 – 8oz glasses spread throughout the day. And remember that foods such as celery and apples can contain as much as half a cup of water, so factor this into your equation.

5. Moderation

This is hard for most people. Our portion sizes in this country have grown so much that most of us no longer recognize a reasonable portion. A true portion size of meat is about the size of a deck of cards. When you’re used to ½ pound burgers or 12 ounce steaks, cutting down is hard at first. I was raised on a dairy farm and drink only whole milk and eat only real butter. It’s organic and I know the source, unlike margarine and other things you may find in the stores. I’ve lost weight just but cutting back and not depriving myself. Sure, I have pizza once in a while, but in small amounts. Try eating vegetables before a meal so you fill up on the good stuff…just like our mamas used to tell us.

6. Less sugar

This is one of the hardest things I had to deal with – cutting out sugar. I’m talking about refined sugar, white sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Closely scrutinize your foods to be sure of what you’re getting – many breads and store-bought food contain high fructose corn syrup. Why avoid it? The commercial on TV says corn sugar is the same as cane sugar. True, but high fructose corn syrup isn’t corn sugar. They’re two separate things. Sugar in your body will turn to fat if not used to make energy. Natural sweeteners are ok, again, in moderation. Raw honey, pure maple syrup and even monk fruit are some natural sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners fool your body into thinking they’re sugars, so they could cause a rise in blood sugar, which could cause your body to hold more fat.

7. Milk

It was once thought that skim milk, because it has no fat, will help you lose weight. This thinking is flawed. Milk contains calcium, which can help you lose weight, but-surprise!-it doesn’t matter if it’s skim or whole milk. All milk contains the same amount of lactic acid, or milk sugar. This is what turns to fat if not used by the body. So don’t worry about what the fat content of your milk is – worry more about the source. (Find fresh, whole, unprocessed dairy near you here.) Read more about the lies behind skim milk here.

8. Chitosan

This is the outer shell of shellfish such as lobster or crayfish. If you are allergic to shellfish, this is NOT a good idea for you! You need to take it half an hour before you eat and with a full glass of water. It floats on the surface of the water in your stomach, absorbs the fat and forms balls that sink and travel through your intestines. When you first take it you’ll want to stay near a restroom, so you might want to do it at home. It can have some unpleasant side effects! But soon your body will adjust and it should work well. I have lost over 30 pounds this way.

9. Chromium

There are some schools of thought that this mineral helps you to lose weight. I’ve used it with some results.

10. Tulsi

Tulsi, or Holy or Sacred Basil has been used for centuries in India and other regions nearby. It is a women’s herb, helping to regulate hormones. Men can take it too and not have to worry about the hormonal issue. By drinking a cup of Tulsi tea once daily, you could lose 4-5 pounds a year. Now that’s not a lot, but good results for doing nothing at all. It has a cinnamon or clove type flavor and blends well with other teas.

DIY Natural Disclaimer: While we don’t agree with the way our culture places such emphasis on being thin (and we encourage readers to focus more on developing a positive body image instead of focusing on weight), we also understand there are many reasons individuals may have a desire to lose some weight – including serious health issues. 

So if you’re trying to lose some weight, there are many natural options. Have you tried anything else naturally and lost weight? Let us know!

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DISCLAIMER: Information on DIY Natural™ is not reviewed or endorsed by the FDA and is NOT intended to be substituted for the advice of your health care professional. If you rely solely upon this advice you do so at your own risk. Read full Disclaimer & Disclosure statements here.

Comments

  1. I have really enjoyed, and lost weight on the WHOLE FOOD PLANT BASED way of eating! I’ve eaten more than I ever have in my life, and who knew a person could CRAVE veggies and the million ways to eat them? Meanwhile, the weight keeps falling off….. It’s been called so many “diets” but truly for me, it was a change in eating, not dieting. Sometimes called Engine 2 Diet, the Forks over Knives Diet, and lots of friends and family that don’t want to say WFPB just say I’m vegan. (Which a rolled eyes kind of face follows, especially at restaurants). But I don’t care what it’s called, I’m healthier than I’ve ever been, much better energy, too many improvements to list, but my doctors are so happy!

    Sorry, I meant for 2cents and gave you a dollar. :)

    Karen

  2. Every one deserves to be happy with their body so here is what really works:
    1. Keep a food journal and really know what you are eating and how much. At a minimum, track calories, protein and carbs. It eye opening how fast the calories and carbs add up and how hard it is to get enough protein.
    2. Eat every 2-3 hours. This keeps your blood sugar levels even. When blood sugar goes up and down, insulin is released. Insulin makes you store fat. Most of your meals will be small, but you can have a bigger meal for either breakfast or lunch and again for dinner.
    3. When you eat, try to keep the amount of protein and carbs balanced i.e. 15 grams of carbs and 15 grams of protein for a small meal. Balancing carbs and protein is another way to keep your blood sugar levels even. Remember, INSULIN MAKES YOU STORE FAT! This will also help you get enough protein in your diet. (In general you need about 1 gram of protein for each pound of lean body weight each day.) Almost any kind of protein is good but it should be lean i.e. fish, turkey breast, chicken breast, egg whites. Not all carbs are good–stay away from processed foods and get your morning carbs in the form of complex carbs such as plain oatmeal or whole grain (not multigrain) breads. These complex carbs should only be eaten in the morning as they are more slowly digested and provide energy for your day. The rest of the day your carbs should be in the form of veggies. The greener the veggie the better it is for losing weight (think spinach, broccoli, kale). As you get into more colorful veggies, the carbs are not as diet friendly (sweet potatoes, carrots, corn, etc).
    4. The advice given about healthy fats is good advice that most people may not be aware of. Your body needs essential fatty acids aka omega fats to function properly. You can get these from fish, flaxseed oil, avocados, olives, olive oil, nuts. Be careful with nuts though, it’s easy to eat too many!
    5. Drink LOTS of water. Often, we mistake thirst for hunger. And if you are trying to lose weight, water will help flush out all of the stuff you are trying to get rid of!
    6. As for exercise, hours on the treadmill reading a magazine or watching tv is a waste of your time. If you haven’t been active, you must start out slow. But eventually, you should be doing high intensity interval training – HIIT. Short, very intense intervals that really get your heart going and make you sweat are much more effective than long, slow exercise. And after doing HIIT, you will continue to burn calories at a higher rate long after you are done exercising! You can do intervals on the treadmill, elliptical, spin bike, running, etc.
    In general, this is how fitness models eat and do cardio exercise. If you are trying to lose weight, you will eat a small amount at each meal with dinner or lunch being a larger meal (but still limited in size to keep your daily calorie count down). But always eat at least 6 times a day! Did I say insulin makes you store fat?! Program the alarm on your smart phone to remind you when to eat and soon it will be habit. Once you have lost the extra weight, continue to eat this way to maintain your lower weight and good health. You will just increase your daily calories since you are no longer dieting. If you do this, it will work. It may be a challenge, but if it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you!

  3. I am interested in trying the Chitosan. Is there a brand or retailer that you prefer to purchase from? I see Purtians Pride has it but I’ve never been sure that they’re a good quality place to purchase from.

  4. Hi…This is great common sense advice…Or should I say ‘uncommon sense’!..lol..Common sense should be a given but is becoming rare..Studies show that eating an Organic diet results in eating less…The human body doesn’t recognize process Genetically modified, pesticide laden foods as nutrition…The result is frequent hunger and often obesity results….

    Nutrition from Organic food is recognized and utilized by the body for absorption of nutrients…Hence, less hunger & fewer calories consumed…

  5. All good suggestions, my biggest issue is the exercise and the carb cravings, I have Sticklers Syndrome and Fibromyalgia and I have found the least painful exercise for me is the exercise bike. I haven’t found a way to beat the carb cravings I get in the evenings but I am hoping one of the natural supplements listed in this article will.

  6. I went to a whole-foods-plant-based diet a year ago with amazing results. At age 55 I was 150+lbs (5’3″ tall) and now I weigh 125. Along with the weight drop and excellent food, I move more because I have more energy. It has all come together. The weight loss was gradual. I have to admit that cheese was the hardest to give up but I have found alternatives that I can make with various nuts, believe it or not. And food tastes just so much better without all the sugars and salt and additives. It all started when I watched Forks Over Knives. No more meat, dairy or eggs. And I have my own chickens! Now I give all the eggs away. My son wasn’t happy with the new food but he’s coming around. My spouse is supportive and likes our meals. We eat all we want of these foods with regular cooked-from-scratch meals and plenty of healthy snacks. I can’t say enough good about eating this way. The weight came off without even trying. I feel great!

  7. Thought this might help someone. My husband and I started a diet 10 weeks ago. He has lost 26 lbs and I have lost 18. It is from a book entitled “The Metabolism Miracle” by Diane Kress,RD,CDE. Fantastic book on how all this works with the pancreas and liver, keeping carbs and protein in balance, when to eat and is done in 3 steps. I have tried Everything and this has helped me so much. My numbers were extremely high. I’m 55 and had cholesterol over 310! and triglicerides at over 280! As of my last lipid panel done 3 weeks ago I was at 216 cholesterol and 88 with the trigs!! I feel wonderful. I want to lose about 20 more pounds to be at my target weight of 140. We also walk on a Treadclimber 5 to 6 days a week. This book could just be the one for those out there who can’t seem to follow the traditional nutritionist diet. Also find someone to be accountable to and to give you support. God bless anyone who really wants this and commits!

  8. I understand the whole healthy fats but what I don’t understand: you say to east healthy fats and then later say to take Chitosan to help your body from absorbing the fats; so if you do these 2 things together your not getting the benefits of the good fats. Right?

  9. A few weeks ago I decided to drastically cut processed foods and increase real food. While at the gym the other day I decided on a whim to weigh myself. I had lost 2 lbs!!! Wasn’t even trying to lose weight. It’s amazing how just focusing on nourishing my body with real food made such a difference.

  10. I’ve been doing lifestyle changes based on the “Turbocharged” program. The part about skim milk really caught my attention. I’ve lost about 24 pounds this year, and although I credit my lifestyle changes the most, giving up all of the skim milk that I drank may have been a huge contributor as well. I really do miss the flavor of non-skim milk. I think 2% or maybe even whole milk may be returning to our refrigerator. :)

  11. I was able to lose weight through these means:

    Using a modified low carb diet…I still ate carbs, just whole carbs and still some regular potatoes (just less), next to no sugar, & NO soy (it is bad for your thyroid which regulates everything), and of course, moderation in eating and exercise. It helped as well that I read the INGREDIENTS section of the packaged foods that I did buy, so I could avoid certain things…excess sugars, & certain artificial additives. There are so many that are listed that are so unnatural, it is no wonder our bodies cannot deal with them properly. Get to know your ingredients, what they are and what their purpose is in these “foods” and effects can be on your body. Take cheese, for example. Did you know that most cheese’s first ingredient is modified milk ingredients, that is not even dairy, but mostly sugar and bad fats? Regular table salt has sugar as an ingredient? I now eat pretty traditional foods, mostly homemade and locally sourced when I can, & very little boxed or canned, no sweet drinks (water & raw milk).

    I went for walks about 1/2 hr. – 3/4 hr. long and exercised by mowing the grass every second day(I had a HUGE country lawn, and there was lots of rain that year) with a push mower.

    I have found through experimenting with raw vs. store milk, that when I drink store milk, I gain 6 lb. in 7 days. When I switch back, I lose the same amount of weight in the same time frame. This has happened twice now, with no other changes to affect the gain or the loss. This last time, when I was losing all sorts of weight, it stopped dead at a certain weight and then I gained the usual extra weight. I have not gained more than that, thankfully, but it did stop my weight loss. I fully believe that it was due to the lack of enzymes in the store milk (and the changed molecular structure), that made my weight loss stop. I am looking forward to drinking raw milk again to start losing the weight again. I will be looking into a couple of your other suggestions and the true safety of them during nursing (the Chitosan and the Tulsi) to see if they are okay in this time of my life.

    Thank you for mentioning the myth of the 8 glasses a day of water…that that is including your other intake of fluids (in your fruit, veggies, meats, etc.), not JUST water. So many people don’t understand that.