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Effective Fat Loss for Women: Simple Tips and Strategies!

By: Erin Coleman, B.S. - Nutritional Science, R.D., L.D.,

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

effective fat loss for women

Have you struggled to achieve effective fat loss for women? Effective fat loss for women isn't always easy. But it can be done!

Make sure to begin slowly and choose lifestyle changes you can stick with to burn unwanted body fat and maintain your new figure indefinitely.

Having the right tools and knowledge can make effective fat loss for women possible for any woman, at any age.

Take it one step at a time and follow the strategies below to watch the fat melt away!

How long does it take to lose weight? Here's what you REALLY need to know!

Tips for Effective Fat Loss for Women

Effective fat loss for women might be simpler than you think.

Follow the tips below to watch excess weight and fat melt off!

Set a Goal Weight

Setting goals is the first step toward shedding excess body fat.

Studies show that goal-setting boosts your chance of achieving significant weight loss.

Establish a goal weight or the weight you’d like to achieve by the end of a weight loss program.

Your goal weight might be your lowest adult weight or the weight that (based on your height) gives you a healthy body mass index (BMI) of 18.5 -24.9.

Examples of healthy weights for women at different heights based on the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) BMI tables are as follows:

  • 5 feet 1 inch: 100-131 pounds
  • 5 feet 2 inches: 104-135 pounds
  • 5 feet 3 inches: 107-140 pounds
  • 5 feet 4 inches: 110-144 pounds
  • 5 feet 5 inches: 114-149 pounds
  • 5 feet 6 inches: 118-154 pounds
  • 5 feet 7 inches: 121-158 pounds
  • 5 feet 8 inches: 125-163 pounds
  • 5 feet 9 inches: 128-168 pounds

To find out what your BMI is currently, use an online BMI calculator. Input your height in inches and body weight in pounds into the calculator.

If your BMI is outside of the recommended range of 18.5 -24.9, determine how many pounds you should lose to achieve a healthier BMI.

Doing so lowers your risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes.

Know a Healthy Rate of Weight Loss

While rapid weight loss might sound desirable, it’s not the best way to maintain weight loss long term.

The CDC suggests that dropping 1-2 pounds per week is the safest, most effective way to get rid of excess weight and keep it off for life.

To achieve this weight loss rate, aim to burn 500-1,000 more calories than you eat daily.

Reduce your calorie intake by about 500-750 daily and burn an extra 250-500 calories by increasing activities of daily living.

Examples of 500-600-calorie foods to cut from your diet include:

  • One big mac
  • A large order of fast-food French fries
  • 2 slices of pepperoni pizza
  • One small dairy queen blizzard
  • 3-4 cans of soda
  • One pina colada
  • 4 glasses of wine or beer

It doesn’t take much to add up to 500 calories, which is why cutting the unhealthiest foods from your diet is an excellent way to begin your weight loss journey.

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Eliminate Certain Foods and Drinks

Cutting out certain foods and drinks enhances weight and fat loss in women.

Unhealthy foods hinder weight loss because they are loaded with extra calories but aren't as nutritious as whole foods.

Examples of foods and drinks to steer clear of include:

  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Sugary drinks and juices
  • Baked goods
  • Fried foods
  • High-fat red meats and processed meats
  • Potato chips
  • Pizza
  • White bread and white rice
  • Regular pasta
  • Sweets and sugary cereals
  • Protein or granola bars containing added sugar

While this list is extensive, making a few simple changes at a time can do wonders for your figure, energy levels, and long-term results.

Use Fat Loss Meal Plans for Women

Using a fat loss meal plan might sound daunting, but numerous healthy weight loss plans for women exist and some are extremely simple to follow.

Examples include:

Vegetarian and Vegan Meal Plans

Studies show that simply switching from a standard American diet to a vegetarian, or better yet a vegan, meal plan aids in weight and fat loss.

Even if you make no other dietary or activity changes, cutting out meat (especially processed meat) is an excellent way to reduce your overall calorie intake for fat loss.

It’s a simple change to make, and if you’re not in love with meat, a vegetarian meal plan might be the fat loss diet for you.

Lower-Carb (High-Fat) Meal Plans

Many carbs, including added sugar, other sweets, and refined grains, can pack on calories and extra pounds and increase sweet cravings.

Sweets and refined carbs foods don’t fill you up like fiber-rich carbohydrates, protein, and dietary fat does.

Studies show that lower-carb, high-fat diets can improve body weight and body fat, and may even enhance endurance exercise performance in active adults.

The Institute of Medicine recommends adults consume at least 130 grams of carbs daily, but many Americans eat much more than this.

When you choose carbs, pick those rich in fiber – such as sweet potatoes, corn, peas, beans, other legumes, non-starchy vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds.

Well-Balanced Reduced-Calorie Plans

Well-balanced, reduced-calorie meal plans are some of the most effective weight loss diets for women because they keep energy levels high, are easy to maintain long term, and reduce your risk of nutrient deficiencies.

For weight and fat loss in women, aim to eat 1,200-1,800 calories daily depending on your size and activity level. Break up meals into 300-350-calorie portions and snacks into 150-250-calorie serving sizes.

Prep Meals Ahead of Time

Prepping weight loss meals ahead of time makes it simple to eat healthy during the busy hustle and bustle of life’s activities.

Portion cooked nutritious meals into sealed containers and heat them up later in the week.

Use the following guidelines during meal prep for weight loss:

  • Fill half of each plate with lower-calorie (non-starchy) vegetables
  • Fill one-fourth of your plate with fiber-rich starches (whole grains, sweet potatoes, corn, peas, beans, lentils, etc.)
  • Fill one-fourth of your plate with healthy protein foods (chicken, fish, seafood, eggs, tofu, etc.)
  • Eat healthy fats at each meal
  • Consume 2-3 servings of dairy foods or calcium-rich alternatives daily

Store prepped meals in airtight containers in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, or the freezer for 3-4 months before tossing it out.

Try Intermittent Fasting

Fasting isn’t for everybody but is often an effective strategy for fat loss for women.

show that intermittent fasting is an excellent short-term weight loss approach for overweight and obese adults.

There are numerous ways you can intermittently fast to cut calories for fat loss. Examples include:

  • Restrict eating to an 8-10-hour block of time during the day
  • Skip certain meals
  • Eat just fruits and veggies during the day and one larger meal in the evening

Not eating for an entire day can lead to unwelcome side effects, such as nausea, headaches, weakness, extreme fatigue, and difficulty concentrating (mental fatigue).

Therefore, don’t fast every day and avoid all-day fasts.

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Consider Meal Replacements

Studies show that meal replacements (replacing meals with nutrition shakes or bars) improve body composition, enhances weight loss, shrinks your waist, and reduces overall fat mass if you're overweight or obese.

To use meal replacements for effective weight and fat loss in women, choose protein-rich shakes or bars instead of 1-2 meals daily.

Opt for meal replacements containing about 300-350 calories when weight loss is your goal.

Try protein shakes or bars designed for weight loss containing:

  • At least 10 grams of protein
  • 3 or more grams of fiber
  • 5 grams (or less) of sugar

Beware of meal replacement products that are loaded with added sugar and other fillers.

Try a nutritious weight loss protein shake recipe based on your taste preferences.

Replace breakfast, lunch, or dinner with a protein-rich shake or bar to boost satiety and keep your overall calorie intake low.

Focus on Fat-Burning Workouts

Exercise is crucial when fat loss is your goal.

Eating right is equally important, but you won’t accumulate the lean body mass needed for effective weight and fat loss by being sedentary.

Complete fat-burning workouts most days of the week and change up your routine often.

Examples of fat-burning workouts for women with proven results include:

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

HIIT is considered to be one of the most effective forms of exercise.

The method includes alternating periods of high-intensity exercise with lower-intensity recovery.

For example, you might sprint at a fast pace for 30-60 seconds, jog slowly for 30-60 seconds to recover, and repeat continuously for 20-30 minutes.

You can complete HIIT by cycling, stair climbing, swimming, using an elliptical trainer, rowing, or any other form of cardiovascular exercise.

Short HIIT workouts are convenient when you’re tight on time.

Strength Circuit Training

Strength circuit training is an important workout when fat loss for women is your goal.

Complete circuit training for 30-60 minutes by doing one strength training exercise for 30-60 seconds and immediately moving on to the next resistance or aerobic exercise (with little to no rest periods between sets).

For example, you might try:

  • Squat to press (using dumbbells) for 30-60 seconds
  • Burpees for 30-60 seconds
  • Plank holds for 30-60 seconds
  • Repeat two more times
  • Rest
  • Move on to another circuit

Long Continuous Cardio

Studies show that long continuous cardiovascular exercise at a moderate intensity (lasting at least 45 minutes in length) reduces abdominal fat and improves overall health in overweight and obese adults.

You don’t have to overexert yourself to effectively shed pounds.

Simply work out at a moderate pace for 45-60 minutes by swimming, jogging, stair climbing, cycling, rowing, or trying any other aerobic exercise.

Consider Dietary Supplements

Dietary supplements make up key components of fat loss in women.

These supplements work by reducing your appetite, increasing calorie expenditure, boosting energy levels, or increasing your body’s ability to burn fat.

Examples of supplements that appear to be effective for weight or fat loss, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), include:

  • Protein supplements
  • Fiber supplements
  • White kidney bean supplements
  • Mango seed extract
  • Green tea extract
  • Green coffee bean extract
  • Chromium
  • Multivitamin supplements
  • Caffeine
  • Carnitine
  • Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)
  • Pyruvate

Check in with your doctor before taking dietary supplements to determine which ones are right for you.

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Erin Coleman

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

Erin Coleman is a registered and licensed dietitian with over 15 years of freelance writing experience.

She graduated with her Bachelor of Science degree in nutritional science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and completed her dietetic internship at Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Prior to beginning her career in medical content writing, Erin worked as Health Educator for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Internal Medicine.

Her published work appears on hundreds of health and fitness websites, and she’s currently working on publishing her first book! Erin is a wife, and a Mom to two beautiful children.

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If you’re a busy mom who wants to finally lose weight, get healthy, and actually keep the pounds off for good, this is the simple program you’ll love sticking to…

Our Fit Mother 30X Program (FM30X) is the answer you’ve been looking for. Inside FM30X, you’ll receive:

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*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on effective fat loss for women.

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Our Fit Mother Project Team’s deepest commitment is to helping you live healthier for both yourself and your family. And when it comes to online content, integrity and trust is everything. That’s why our Fit Mother Project staff-writers are all trained professionals in the field of health and wellness (registered dieticians, licensed personal trainers, and licensed physicians) – see the full team here. We rigorously run all of our articles through a rigorous editorial process to ensure the accuracy, simplicity, and utility of the information. And we aren’t just a team of “academics” sitting in an ivory tower. We are real people – with jobs, responsibilities, and families – working hard in the trenches and testing our tips & methods out to make sure you can stay healthy for family.

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Thanks for checking out the blog. We can’t wait to support you toward greater health, energy, and vitality.

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