How fast can you lose weight and by how much? What is the normal weight loss rate? What to expect from a diet? Fat loss and weight loss. These issues are of interest to those who are losing weight in the first place. But people’s ideas about the speed with which fat burns are not quite realistic – especially against the background of “-10 per week” diets. We are promised that this is real if a little torment and starve. And for everything below this figure, we no longer agree.
This article is for those who are upset by losing “just” 500 grams per week; for those who believe that he is doing something wrong, and his metabolism is too low to lose weight quickly.
Fat loss and weight loss
Before talking about the speed of losing weight, it is important to learn to distinguish between weight loss and fat loss.
Bodyweight is not only fat, even in the fattest person with clinical obesity. These are organs, bones, muscles, water, glycogen, and even intestinal contents. Weight loss does not specify what exactly is leaving.
Maybe muscle. There may be glycogen and the water that it holds. Maybe swelling. Anyone who has encountered food poisoning knows how to quickly lose weight by 3-5 kg. But weight returns as soon as a person returns to ordinary life. Thus, in all of the above falls under the “loss of excess weight.” But when people think about losing weight, they want to get rid of fat.
When it comes to body shape, the main goal is to lose as much fat as possible and maintain as much muscle as possible. The rest of the ballast – water, glycogen, and food inside the digestive tract – things come and go.
So, at the end of the cycle, a woman suffers from edema, adding up to 3 kilograms. The amount of glycogen and the water it holds depends on the amount of carbohydrates in food.
Weight differences are especially noticeable when a person switches from a non-carbohydrate diet to a regular diet. Or vice versa – removes carbohydrates and the first week enjoys a large “plumb”.
How do you know if muscle or fat is leaving?
Weighing is only one way to control weight loss, and it does not show the whole picture. The ratio of body fat to muscle is called body composition. That is what determines how we look.
A lot of fat and little muscle – this is an ordinary fat man. Low fat and low muscle is a skinny-fat figure. A lot of fat and a lot of muscle – a massive stocky figure. A little fat and a lot of muscle is what everyone dreams of, a beautiful athletic body. Therefore, it is important to monitor not only the arrow on the scales, but also the ratio of fat and muscles. This will make it clear that you are losing.
You can find out body composition in a variety of ways – paid and free, accurate and approximate. Among them are bioimpedanceometry, measurement of skin folds with a caliper.
The best way to maintain muscle while losing weight is to eat enough protein, do strength training and maintain (or even increase) working weights. If the working weights are gradually reduced, this may be a signal that the muscles are getting smaller. That’s why it’s important to keep a training diary – it allows you to see progress, weight gain or decline from week to week.
What is the normal fat loss rate?
The norm is a loss of 0.5-1.0% of body weight per week. This is a good indicator, which guarantees that it is fat (1) that goes away. If your weight is 70 kg, then you should expect a loss of 350-700 grams per week. Slimmer people lose less – on the lower border and even less. People who are overweight, obese, lose more – up to 2 kg. It looks just pathetic in comparison with the “-10 per week” diet, but it is a reality.
Even if we go on a hungry, carbohydrate-free diet – cucumber, kefir, celery – it will still take about the same amount of fat. All other “plumb” – water, glycogen, swelling, and intestinal contents. As soon as the body gets rid of the “non-fat” ballast, weight loss slows down to the same 0.5-1 kg per week.
There are more accurate numbers of healthy fat loss per month (rather than weight due to muscle and water):
- People with obesity (30-35% of body fat): 4-6% of body weight or 3.6-9 kg
- Normal weight (23-27% of body fat): 2-3% of body weight or 2-2.8 kg.
- Slender people (17-22% fat): 1-2% of body weight or 0.8-2 kg.
- Dry (12-16% fat): 0.5-1% of body weight or 0.4-0.8 kg.
Or fat loss per week:
- Obesity: 0.9-1.4 kg
- Average weight: 0.5-0.7 kg
- Slender people: 0.2-0.5 kg
- Dry people: 0.1-0.2 kg
You also need to remember that fat loss is not a linear process. Sometimes the weight is worth, sometimes it can go up, and once it goes down steeply. Look at the general trend. Do not wait for the fat to melt before your eyes, like wax. It takes time. The more excess weight you have, the faster it leaves. The slimmer a person becomes, the slower he loses weight.