How To Lose A Pound A Day: Tips, Tricks, And If It Is Possible?

Date
May
31
2022
Compiled By Otella Ritzy
Medically Reviewed By M Lieberman, [MD] FACT CHECKED

Shedding some pounds can be a real struggle. Even though a lot of techniques have evolved, it is still enough for some people. The reasons can be multiple.

Maybe it’s working, maybe it’s not or maybe it’s working but not enough. You might get impatient in the process seeing the slow growth.

You might want to see faster results in the minimum time. That is when things like “how to lose a pound a day” pop up.

The question itself hints at the struggle one can have in the process and the side effects.

In this article, we will try to answer everything related to this question, and then you can decide if that’s safe and suitable.

Is It Possible To Lose A Pound A Day?

If you think and calculate, it is possible on the page, but practically it may not be. Here’s why:

To lose a pound every day you need to burn 3500 calories and that’s a lot to burn. Daily intake to maintain normal physical activity is around 2000.

So you need to get some food and those calories because you cannot choose to starve. That is the worst thing you can think of.  

Now to shed the extra amount of calories, very strict dieting and cardio of at least 1 hour are required. It is a matter of pure will and can be very exhausting.

You can lose some muscle mass rather than fat in the process which might not be a good deal. Some people can still get close to the mark but if you started your weight loss journey recently, it is better to opt for slow and safe methods. 

The safe amount of weight loss per week also varies from person to person. If you are fat or you weigh around 90 kg (200lb) you can safely lose around 2.5 pounds a week but as the weight starts decreasing, so does the weight loss limit but losing fat.

If you are losing anything above that, it means you are probably losing muscle mass. 

To calculate this for your body weight, multiply your weight in pounds with the amount of body fat present in the body. Multiply the answer to 31 as it is the number of calories a person can lose per pound.

After doing so, the answer you get is the number of calories you can burn in a day. This is body fat and not muscles. 

Let us understand this with an example if a person weighs 250 lb and has 25 percent body fat. So multiplying the two figures we get 

250×0.25= 62.5

Multiply this by 31

62.5× 31= 1937.5

1937.5 is the number of calories you can burn in a day without losing muscles. 

It is quite evident that even a person weighing 250 pounds cannot lose 3500 calories without losing muscle mass. So only opt for this if you have no problem losing some muscles.

How To Lose A Pound A Day?

With all being said and calculated, if you feel like going ahead, here are the steps. 
  1. Do Not Starve

    This is a very big mistake people make. You don’t have to be merciless to yourself. Opt for some calorie-deficit food rather than starving. Intermittent fasting could be a great idea too[1]. If you starve yourself, you will lose a lot of energy or may fall sick. If this situation worsens you can die. Starving may cause some weight loss but once you resume eating, the body starts storing more calories to regain what was lost. You will be exhausted the entire time and your bone density will go down quickly. After you resume eating, it can be difficult to digest. You may experience acid reflux and gain weight. This won’t help or make things better for you. So do not fall for any trend you see, make a smart choice. Go for some healthy techniques.
  2. Water Is The Key

    Stay hydrated[2]. Drink water before meals, so it helps to control the food intake. Since water weight is easier to lose, you won’t have difficulty figuring out the water intake. It should just be enough and not excessive. At the same time, a drink consisting of squeezed lemon[3] along with lukewarm water might be able to assist you in shedding weight in winters.
  3. Sweat

    If a major proportion of body weight comes from water, this one can be very helpful. Going out in the sun, bathing with hot water, or doing some exercise to sweat will work perfectly. For those having major stores of fat, this might not make a difference. 
  4. Make A Diet Plan

    Now, you can get it done professionally. But it is not possible for everyone as it may not be affordable. So making a diet plan is not so difficult. You have a lot of options to choose from, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. First and the most basic thing to do while looking for such a major weight loss goal is to eat low carb low calorie food. That has to be evenly distributed throughout the day. Some of the foods and fruits you can opt for are
    • Salmon
    • Cottage cheese
    • Cabbage
    • Watermelon[4]
    • Tuna
    • Tomato
    • Cucumber
    • Berries[5]
    • Guava
    • Eggs
    • Apples
    • Chicken breast
    • Spinach
    • Kale
    • Cauliflower
    • Sprouts
    • Salad
    • Soups
    You can be flexible in choosing the diet and the pattern. Intermittent fasting is one of the best and safe methods excluding people like pregnant women. The methods can vary.
  5. A Quick Weight Loss Salad Recipe

    Grab some green onions, tomatoes, and cucumber. Chop some any way you want. Add some vinegar, salt, and black pepper. Enjoy!
  6. Intermittent Fasting

    As it is well known by now, it is not a diet but a dieting pattern. The best thing about this is it is a long-term plan and safe to be followed for a lifetime. There are several techniques under this to follow. 16:8 is the most famous technique with 16 hours fast and 8 hours left for eating. Eat healthy in these 8 hours and nothing more than water and black coffee with no sugar in the fasting period. If you are a newbie, opt for alternate day fasting or the 5:2 method.
  7. Only Fruit Diet

    You can opt for a fruit[6] diet but maintain a balance between the nutrients. Do not choose only a fruit diet for the long run. It can be good for short-term goals. Avoid bananas and eat fruits like apples, guava, and berries. Water-rich fruits like melons and watermelons are great too.
  8. GM Fasting

    This plan is gaining popularity due to its benefits in the short term. It is a seven-day plan with all fruits on the first day and all veggies on the second. A mix of fruits and veggies on third. You can have bananas and milk on the fourth day. Only meat on the fifth, a combination of meat and veggies on the sixth day, and finally brown rice fruits and veggies on the last day. For the vegetarian version, skip the meat and have tomatoes and sprouts on the fifth day, soups and veggies on the sixth, and chapatis, brown rice, and veggies on the last day. This is not a long-term ideal diet. Follow it for a week and take a break next week. Do not follow it for more than a few weeks. Children, teenagers, diabetics, and pregnant women should avoid it at all costs. It is not a very safe diet plan specifically in the long run. 
  9. Go For Cardio

    Just eating the right food is not enough, one has to do cardio[7] for at least 1 hour to burn enough calories. You can opt for simple things like running, skipping, etc. 1 hour of cardio can be divided into 2 halves of 30 minutes to make it easier. It can be further divided into 4 parts each of 15 minutes. 
  10. Watch While You Are Eating

    Generally, we tend to eat more than required. It is better to take a break and see if you are hungry. If you feel you are still hungry you can eat a little more. But, if you are full already you can stop. This is a way of sending signals to the brain to tell you whenever you are full.
  11. Replace Your Oil

    If you are cooking in normal refined oil or ghee, you can consider olive oil[8],  sesame oil, coconut oil, peanut oil, or avocado oil. 
  12. Stay Positive

    The final thing is trusting the process. Do not get frustrated when you don’t lose enough weight. Do not hate your body or get harsh on yourself. Losing weight very quickly can be challenging and tiring. Set up small goals and follow up. You will eventually get there.

Conclusion

Losing a pound every day can be very challenging for the body. One should consider this as a last option or look for healthier methods.

Those who are already following an extreme workout routine for quite some time and have proper hunger management can go ahead with this.

You are likely to lose muscle mass with fat in the process. Eat healthy, stay hydrated and get good sleep to keep up with your routine.

+8 References/Sources

Working4Health prefers using primary and verified references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and our primary references include peer-reviewed researches, academic and medical institution studies. 

  1. Stephanie Welton, MSc, Robert Minty, MD CCFP FCFP, Teresa O’Driscoll, MD FCFP, et al. Intermittent fasting and weight loss. Can Fam Physician. 2020 Feb; 66(2): 117–125.
  2. Jodi D Stookey, Florence Constant, Barry M Popkin, Christopher D Gardner. Drinking water is associated with weight loss in overweight dieting women independent of diet and activity. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2008 Nov;16(11):2481-8. doi: 10.1038/oby.2008.409. Epub 2008 Sep 11. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18787524/.
  3. Yoshiko Fukuchi, Masanori Hiramitsu, Miki Okada, et al. Lemon Polyphenols Suppress Diet-induced Obesity by Up-Regulation of mRNA Levels of the Enzymes Involved in β-Oxidation in Mouse White Adipose Tissue. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2008 Nov; 43(3): 201–209. Published online 2008 Oct 31. doi: 10.3164/jcbn.2008066.
  4. Tiffany Lum, Megan Connolly, Amanda Marx, et al. Effects of Fresh Watermelon Consumption on the Acute Satiety Response and Cardiometabolic Risk Factors in Overweight and Obese Adults. Nutrients. 2019 Mar; 11(3): 595. Published online 2019 Mar 12. doi: 10.3390/nu11030595.
  5. Takanori Tsuda, Dorothy Klimis-Zacas, Academic Editor. Recent Progress in Anti-Obesity and Anti-Diabetes Effect of Berries. Antioxidants (Basel). 2016 Jun; 5(2): 13. Published online 2016 Apr 6. doi: 10.3390/antiox5020013.
  6. Satya P. Sharma, Hea J. Chung, Hyeon J. Kim, Seong T. Hong,*. Paradoxical Effects of Fruit on Obesity. Nutrients. 2016 Oct; 8(10): 633. Published online 2016 Oct 14. doi: 10.3390/nu8100633.
  7. Damon L. Swift, Ph.D., Neil M. Johannsen, Ph.D., Carl J. Lavie, M.D., Conrad P. Earnest, Ph.D., Timothy S. Church, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D. The Role of Exercise and Physical Activity in Weight Loss and Maintenance. Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 2014 Jan-Feb; 56(4): 441–447. Published online 2013 Oct 11. doi: 10.1016/j.pcad.2013.09.012.
  8. José J. Gaforio, Francesco Visioli, Catalina Alarcón-de-la-Lastra, et al. Virgin Olive Oil and Health: Summary of the III International Conference on Virgin Olive Oil and Health Consensus Report, JAEN (Spain) 2018. Nutrients. 2019 Sep; 11(9): 2039. Published online 2019 Sep 1. doi: 10.3390/nu11092039.

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