When we eat an excess of calories — that is, extra calories our bodies cannot use for energy — that excess calorie intake is stored as fat, providing the body with an extra energy source for future use. While carbohydrates and proteins are our bodies’ first line of fuel, they will resort to body fat when food is scarce, such as during a fast.
That said, fat serves a few other roles in the body as well: Fat can nourish our cells and fuel the immune system during times of illness.
However, too much stored body fat can have negative health consequences, such as being overweight or having heart issues. Fortunately, there are several ways to lose weight naturally, improve your overall health and achieve your ideal summer body all year round.
#1 Create a Calorie Deficit
Sometimes, we can’t help but indulge in a meal that’s filled with salt, sugar and saturated fats. However, too much of a delicious thing can negatively affect the body.
That said, when it comes to losing weight naturally, you must eat fewer calories than your body uses.
To know how many calories you need to eat to maintain your current body weight, you’ll need to pay special attention to your unique body composition, age and physical activity level — then, you can make the appropriate adjustments from there to calculate how many calories you need to consume to effectively facilitate weight loss.
On average, experts recommend that adults over the age of 21 should eat roughly 1,600 to 3,000 calories a day. However, this can differ depending on your assigned gender at birth, as well as your age and physical activity level:
Women, aged 21 to 25– The recommended calorie intake ranges will depend on activity level: Those who are sedentary should consume 2,000 calories a day. Those who are moderately active should consume 2,200 calories a day and women who are active must eat 2,400 calories a day.
Women, aged 26 to 30 – Sedentary individuals should eat 1,800 calories a day, while moderately active people can eat 2,000 calories. More active people can eat 2,400 calories a day.
Women aged 31 to 50 – Those who are sedentary should consume 1,600 calories a day, active individuals should consume 2,000 calories and more active people should consume 2,200 calories daily.
Women aged 51 to 60 – 1,600 calories are recommended for those who are lightly active, while moderately active individuals should eat 1,800 calories daily. More active people should eat 2,200 calories daily.
Women, aged 61 and up – Older women who are sedentary should eat 1,600 calories a day, while lightly active women should eat 1,800 calories a day and more active women should eat 2,000 calories a day.
Men, aged 21 to 25 – Men who aren’t active should consume 2,400 calories daily, while lightly active men should eat 2,800 calories a day and more active men should eat 3,000 calories a day.
Men, aged 26 to 35 – Similarly, sedentary men in this age range should eat 2,400 calories a day. Those who are moderately active should consume 2,600 calories and those who are more active should eat 3,000 calories.
Men, aged 36 to 40 – Low active individuals should eat 2,400 calories, moderately active people should eat 2,600 calories and more active people should eat 2,800 calories.
Men, aged 41 to 45 – Those who are sedentary should eat 2,200 to maintain their current body weight, while moderately active individuals should eat 2,600 and active individuals should eat 2,800 calories a day.
Men, aged 46 to 55 – Sedentary individuals in this age range should also eat 2,200 calories. However, those who are moderately active should eat 2,400 and those who are active should eat 2,800 calories daily.
Men, aged 56 to 60 – Similarly, sedentary individuals should eat 2,200 calories and those who are moderately active are recommended to eat 2,400 calories. Those who are more active should eat 2,600 daily calories.
Men, aged 61 to 65 – These men, if sedentary, should eat 2,000 calories daily. Active individuals should eat 2,400 calories, with more active men eating 2,600 calories daily.
Men, aged 66 to 75 – Older men who aren’t very active should only eat 2,000 calories a day. However, those who are lightly active can eat 2,200 calories and those who are more active can eat 2,600 calories.
Men, aged 76 and up – Sedentary men should only consume 2,000 calories, while those who are lightly active should eat 2,200 calories daily. More active men can increase their consumption to 2,400 daily calories.
All that said, sedentary lifestyles are defined by activities that don’t expend a large amount of energy. These can include sitting or laying down, cleaning, watering plants and walking the dog — unless done for more than 30 minutes a day.
Moderately active lifestyles involve activities required of daily living, such as those listed above, as well as 30 minutes of daily exercise. This can include walking briskly, jogging or swimming.
Active lifestyles are those that include at least an hour and 45 minutes of exercise daily, such as jogging, weight lifting or being on your feet for the majority of the day.
#2 Eat a Balanced Diet
To lose weight naturally, the majority of the calories you consume should come from healthy food.
These include any foods that are minimally processed and contain no added chemicals or preservatives. Essentially, they’re foods in their most natural states, and they contain a high amount of nutrients for the number of calories they provide, such as:
Accordingly, you can eat larger portions of whole foods than you would of processed foods, such as breakfast cereals, baked goods, chips, crackers and frozen dinners. Whole foods include:
Fruits – Begin your day with a bowl of fruit or a creamy fruit smoothie, or keep a few frozen grapes in the fridge for an after-dinner dessert. If grapes aren’t your thing, you’re in luck. There are various fruit options available each season that can provide you with various nutrients and antioxidants which may support skin, heart and digestive health, in addition to weight management. These include but are not limited to bananas, strawberries, mangoes, blueberries, melons and pears.
Vegetables – Incorporating a vegetable variety into your diet can deliver many nutrients to your body and may also help keep you fuller longer since they’re high in fiber. They’re also low in calories and contain a high water content to help keep you hydrated throughout the day. You can throw a few leafy greens into your morning smoothie or create a veggie-dense dinner.
Whole grains – Whole grains are packed with plenty of fiber, vitamins and minerals and include brown rice, oatmeal and quinoa, among others. They also release energy slowly once consumed, meaning they can support blood sugar levels and provide long-lasting energy throughout the day to curb the desire to overeat.
Legume – Legumes include soybeans, peanuts, lentils, alfalfa and clover. They contain many nutrients, such as fiber, protein, carbohydrates, B vitamins, iron, copper, magnesium, zinc and phosphorus. Because they’re high in fiber and protein, legumes are extremely filling and metabolized easily.
Nuts and seeds – For a quick snack, grab a handful of almonds, cashews, pecans or pistachios. Nuts and seeds are a source of healthy fat and also provide great sources of protein and fiber, as well as vitamins and minerals. Effectively, they can support feelings of fullness, help regulate hormones and may aid lean muscle growth, which burns a high amount of calories daily.
To incorporate more protein into your diet, consider opting for whey protein. While whey protein is a processed form of protein, it may also support:
Feelings of fullness
#3 Exercise Regularly
While diet has a stronger effect on weight management, exercise is just as important to your overall wellness. Overall, staying physically active can help:
Improve brain health
Support bone and muscle strength
Aid joint movement
All that said, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends a combination of aerobic activity and strength training if you’re looking to drop a few pounds.
More specifically, people should moderately exercise for 150 minutes a week, or for 75 minutes if the exercises are more vigorous. These activities can include anything that increases your heart and breathing rates, such as:
The American Heart Association further recommends 30 minutes of daily cardiovascular exercise five to seven days per week.
Strength training exercises, on the other hand, should target each of your muscle groups at least twice a week. You’ll want to use enough resistance to tire your muscles after 12 to 15 reps. This can include using personal weights or weight machines, as well as performing body weight exercises such as:
Manage Your Weight With INVIGOR8
Knowing how to lose weight naturally comes down to prioritizing your health. In addition to understanding your unique calorie needs to create a calorie deficit, you can bolster your diet with nutrient-rich whole food options and prioritize physical movement.
Looking for effective weight loss support? At INVIGOR8, we offer our Complete Weight Loss Program to help you meet your health and weight loss goal aspirations. The kit includes our Superfood Shakes, Fat Burner, Collagen Peptides and a meal plan ebook.
Each of our products is made with natural ingredients to deliver whole-body health you can feel and feel good about.
Our weight-loss products all work great on their own, but they work even better together! Try our Superfood Shake in combination with our Collagen Peptides or Fat Burner to promote healthy weight loss.