How much weight can you lose in 2 months?
Your diet is the most important factor in determining how much weight you can lose over a period of 2 months. The type and amount of food that you eat is crucial.
Weight loss comes down to a simple equation: calories in – calories out. Calories are units of energy and all foods have them, but in differing amounts.
Foods that contain a lot of water, such as fruits and vegetables, tend to be low in calories; this is because water has 0 calories. On the other hand, foods that contain a lot of fat, such as nuts and seeds, tend to be high in calories; this is because fat has 9 calories per gram.
You can see how the number of calories in different foods varies here, when compared weight for weight.
When you consume fewer calories than what your body uses up, you begin to lose weight. This is because your body starts to burn its fat stores for energy.
It is important to note that weight loss is not a straightforward linear process and doesn’t happen in a consistent manner. This is especially true when you need to lose large amounts of weight.
Most adults require around 2000 calories to maintain their current weight and it is not recommended that you consume fewer than 1000 – 1200 calories per day, without medical supervision.
On average you can expect to healthily lose anywhere from 8 – 20 pounds over a 2 month period.
However everyone is different and calorie requirements vary from person to person. There are a number of factors that determine how many calories you burn per day and how much you should be eating to lose weight:
- How active you are – exercise uses up energy, so the more active you are the more calories you burn. A person who exercises strenuously 5 times a week will burn far more calories than someone who does no exercise at all.
- Your age – the older you get, the more muscle you begin to lose and the slower your metabolism gets. This means that in most cases, a 60 year old man will naturally burn fewer calories than a 20 year old man.
- Your gender – men tend to be more muscular than women and so they burn more calories. Muscle mass increases calorie expenditure slightly.
Your current weight and height are also deterministic factors in how much food you should eat. You can use this calculator to get an estimate:
This calculator will never show a number below 1000 calories per day. Please speak to a qualified health professional before attempting to eat less than that.
For example a 30 year old lady who weighs 180 pounds, is 5.5 feet tall and exercises 4 times a week will need to consume around 1,900 calories per day to lose weight and 1,450 calories to lose weight fast.
The larger the net calorie deficit you create, the more weight you will lose.
2 months is sufficient time for you to see significant changes in the way your body looks. Here are some tips that you should try and follow so that you lose as much weight as possible.
Drink more water and fewer sugary beverages
Drinking beverages like sodas and fruit juices can make it harder for you to lose weight. This is because they contain far more calories and sugar than water does. For example, a can of cola has around 140 calories and 33 g of sugar; a cup of orange juice has 110 calories and 21 g of sugar. Water on the other hand has no calories and no sugar.
Sugary drinks are one of the main causes of weight gain because people ingest a lot of calories without realising it. When you drink sugary drinks, you consume a large amount of calories but don’t feel as full as you would by consuming the same number of calories via solid food. The large amounts of sugar also affects your insulin levels drastically, which can leave you feeling hungry.
By simply switching to pure water, you can help your weight loss efforts tremendously. Lets say you have a cup orange juice with your breakfast, and a can of soda with lunch and dinner. That equates to almost 400 extra calories per day.
If you were to switch to water instead, over a 2 month period that would mean 24,000 fewer calories are consumed which in turn would mean you lose a significant amount of weight! Just by making one small change.
Increasing the amount of water that you drink has been shown to help you lose weight because it reduces appetite and also boosts metabolism.
Tea and coffee are fine to drink when you are trying to lose weight, they both contain almost no calories. Caffeine has also been shown to boost metabolism a little. Just make sure you limit the amount of sugar and cream that you add.
Eat more protein and fiber
Both protein and fiber help you feel full, which can prevemt overeating. Studies have shown that increasing the intake of both protein and fiber can help you lose weight.
This study found that increasing protein intake to 30% of total calories lead to 441 fewer calories being consumed throughout the day. That is a very large amount and over 2 months would equate to more than 26,000 fewer calories being consumed.
Another study showed that protein consumption boosts metabolism, meaning up to 100 extra calories are used up per day.
You should aim to increase your intake of vegetables, fish, lean meat, nuts and seeds, whilst cutting out junk foods (such as pizza) as much as possible. Eating a protein rich breakfast has been shown to reduce hunger and cravings throughout the day.
Exercise more often and get enough rest
Whilst diet is the most important factor when it comes to losing weight, exercise plays a big role as well. This is because it helps reduce your total calorie deficit.
If you are not very active at the moment, start of slow and gradually increase the amount you exercise. You should aim for 30 minutes of exercise that makes you sweat, at least 4 times a week.
If you already exercise, try increase the intensity at which you workout. High intensity interval training (HIIT) has been shown to be particularly effective. It involves short bursts of intense activity, followed by a longer recovery period. An example would be running as fast as you can for 30 seconds and then jogging at a comfortable pace for a minute; repeat this process over 15 – 20 minutes.
Weight training also helps you lose weight, by “turning fat into muscle“. Compound exercises such as squats and dead-lifts are particularly effective.
One thing I would like to mention is to not be discouraged by your weighing scale. As you increase the amount that you exercise, you will begin to build more muscle. However just like fat, muscle has mass, but it is much more compact.
It may not seem like you are losing a lot of weight when you look at the scale, but this is because you are gaining more muscle. However when you look in the mirror, you will begin to notice changes in your physique. And I am sure that for most people, their goal is not to just lose weight but to also have a better looking physique.
Finally, it is important to get enough quality sleep. Chronic tiredness can negatively impact the amount of weight that you lose.
Over 2 months, a healthy amount of weight to lose would be between 8 and 20 pounds. The amount that you lose will depend on the foods that you eat and how active you are.