Most people find themselves searching through the internet on “how long does it take to lose 20 pounds?” Perhaps, you are in this situation and you’re asking yourself, how fast can I lose weight?
Traditional nutritional knowledge can guide you to get a mathematical answer. It goes with this line, “with a calorie deficit of 500 per day, you can lose one pound each week. With a weight loss calculator how long can you lose 20 pounds? Is it possible to lose 20 pounds in a month? It will only take you 20 weeks.
Unfortunately, it is not true!
The truth is you can lose 20 lbs weight in a few months. But that requires vigorous exercise and eating fewer calories. The exercises should take at least 3 – 5 hours weekly using cardio training, interval training, and resistance training.
In this article, we shall examine what you need to lose 20 pounds. Before that, let’s dive into reasons why you should lose weight.
Why Should You Lose Weight?
Most people ask: What does 25 pounds of fat look like? Shedding extra 20 pounds may sound tough. However, If you try and fail for the first time, it will be challenging to stay motivated. How to lose 20 pounds in a month will depend on various factors.
However, losing the target weight can help improve your health in various ways. There are reasons to lose 20 pounds of your weight:
Regulate Diabetes and Blood Sugar
Shedding these extra pounds will improve your insulin sensitivity to people suffering from type 2 diabetes.
When you have excess body fat, it may lead to an increase in adipose tissue. This will cause inflammation and interference with the function of your insulin. That occurs with changes affecting the hormone regulating the blood sugar level.
Losing weight will reduce adipose tissue allowing your body to manage the blood sugar effectively.
Improve Heart Health
Cutting excess weight improves your heart health by reducing pressure on your arteries. It means your heart will not work hard pumping blood through your body. That will result in low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and lower blood pressure. Therefore, reducing the bad cholesterol that increases heart disease.
But, how long does it take to lose 20 pounds? It doesn’t matter how you lose weight – through metabolic surgery, dieting, or exercise. You can get the benefits of improved heart health by losing some weight.
Nevertheless, researchers have examined various effects of losing weight through surgery or lifestyle. They claimed that the risk of getting heart disease declined significantly.
Reduce Risks of Stroke
Weight increase leads to high blood pressure, therefore, risk of getting a stroke. That’s because high blood pressure will strain your blood vessels, becoming stiffer, leading to a blood clot.
Shedding excess weight will improve the efficiency of your heart from the less constricted blood vessels. But most people search for “how long does it take to lose weight,” “how long does it take to lose 50 pounds?” or “how fast can I lose weight?’ to experience these benefits; read on.
When overweight, you have a higher chance of suffering from sleep apnea. This is a disorder causing disrupted breathing while asleep. The excess weight also increases fat deposits around your neck – obstructing the airways.
Therefore, shredding over 20 pounds of your weight will cure the condition when you suffer from this condition.
Losing excess weight will alleviate pressure on the joints and knees – thus, improving mobility. Various studies have reported that weight loss will cut mobility limitations like climbing stairs or walking.
There is no direct correlation between self-esteem and weight loss. However, various studies have reported that losing weight could improve your self-confidence and mood. Other studies claim that loss of weight could improve your self-worth, body image, and overall health.
Reduce Joint Pain
Excess weight causes stress, damages, and inflammation on your joints. Losing 20 pounds of weight can help solve this problem. But, how long does it take to lose 20 pounds?
A study showed that people who are obese and suffering from knee arthritis reduce pain with weight loss. It also pointed out that they experienced improved joint function.
Additional excess weight causes stress to your joints. The area is damaged and worn out with a smooth surface at your cartilage or end of bones. Therefore, feeling pain and stiffness.
Weight loss improves sleep, therefore feeling energized during the day. Excess weight means your body must work hard. But shedding about 20 pounds allows you to use less energy.
Cutting excess weight will improve your respiratory function – thus feeling more energized.
Higher sex drive
Everyone is looking for ways to improve their sexual performance and pleasure. Losing weight will help you experience a higher sex drive. The challenging thing is, how long does it take to lose 20 pounds?
Weight gain increases sex hormones, thus binding globulin levels. Therefore, lowering testosterone levels and libido.
Reduce Certain Cancers
Various studies claim that excess body weight risks you from getting certain cancers. Some of these cancers resulting from obesity include:
- Kidney cancer
- Breast cancer
- Endometrial cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Liver cancer
Losing weight lowers the risk of developing most of these cancers.
Factor Affecting Weight Loss
Many factors may hinder you from losing your target 20 pounds or more. Therefore, instead of losing weight, it leads to obesity or being overweight. How to lose 50 pounds in a month may be challenging.
These are the factors making it a hassle to lose weight:
Obesity and overweight run in most families; therefore, genes play a significant role. When one or both of your parents are overweight, there is a high chance of getting obese.
The genes affect the amount of fat that your body can store and which part of the body carries extra fat. So, even with dieting and exercise, you may not experience a significant change in weight loss.
Race & Ethnicity
Depending on your race or ethnicity, you may find it a hassle to lose weight. Obesity is high in African Americans, Latinos/Hispanics, and Caucasians, respectively.
Asian Americans have the lowest obesity rates but are still at risk of getting diseases associated with obesity when they have unhealthy fat in their abdomen.
Age plays a significant role in determining weight loss: as you age, you gain more weight. Adults with normal BMI garner weight at early adulthood and continue until they hit 60 to 65 years.
However, those children who are obese will likely be obese at adult age.
A person’s sex can also affect their weight loss. Women will build more fat at the buttocks and hips, but men will build their fat in their belly and abdomen.
Extra fat around the abdomen will put you at risk of experiencing health problems. That doesn’t matter even with normal weight. So, depending on your sex, it may affect your weight loss.
Physical Activities and Eating
Your physical activity and eating habits can decline your success in losing weight. If you want to lose weight, these are habits to avoid:
- Drinking beverages with added sugars
- Eating and drinking beverages having high calories, fat, and sugar
- Spending much time lying or sited without physical activity
Lack of Enough Sleep
When you don’t get enough sleep, you’re likely to eat many snacks and calories. Health professionals recommend you sleep between 7 to 9 hours all day when aged 18 to 64. Those older than 65 years should sleep between 7 to 8 hours a day.
Other factors may hinder weight loss. They include:
- Binge eating disorder
- Certain medicines
- Certain medical conditions
How To Lose 20 Pounds Fast
Many supplements, diets, and meal replacements claim to help you lose weight. With these methods, how long does it take to lose 30 pounds, or how long does it take to lose 50 pounds? Unfortunately, most of these methods lack scientific evidence of their effectiveness.
Nevertheless, there are strategies backed by science and can help you lose weight effectively. If you are looking for how long does it takes to lose 20 pounds, then, with these strategies, you can achieve it fast.
These strategies include intermittent fasting, reducing carbohydrate intake, keeping track of your calorie intake, and exercising.
Here are effective ways of losing 20 pounds weight; backed by scientific evidence:
Intermittent fasting refers to eating patterns involving consuming meals within short periods and short-term fasts during the day. Various studies show that intermittent fasting leads to excessive weight loss.
However, there are different intermittent fasting methods. They include:
- Alternate day fasting – In this method, you fast every day but only eat on non-fasting days. In this method, you should eat 25 to 30 percent of what your body energy is required on fasting days.
- The 16/8 method – In this method, you must fast for 16 hours but only eat within an 8-hour window. Within the 8-hour window, most people are usually between noon to 8 p.m.
Studies claim that when you eat between the period, you can consume fewer calories, thus losing weight.
- The 5:2 Diet – in this method, you must fast within 7 days. When fasting, eat between 500 to 600 calories.
You need to adopt healthy eating and avoid overeating to lose weight.
Diet and Exercises
When aiming to lose 20 pounds of weight, you need to observe what you eat or drink each day. You must log the food you consume every time in your online food tracker or journal.
Consistent tracking of your physical activity can help you with weight loss. One study found a positive correlation between the frequency of monitoring your food intake and exercises to weight loss.
Read More: Guide to Low FODMAP Diet and Meal Planning
This is a practice where you pay attention to where and how you eat food. The practice enables you to enjoy the food you will eat and maintain a healthy weight.
Most people are leaving a busy life, thus, focused on eating quickly on the run, working at their desks, watching TV, and in the car. In such a situation, you can’t be aware of the kind of food you’re eating.
What are techniques for mindful eating? They include:
- Avoid distraction when eating – don’t switch the laptop or TV on.
- Sit down and eat, preferably using a table – you must pay attention to your food and enjoy it.
- Eat slowly – don’t eat fast. Take time to chew the food. The technique will help you lose weight and achieve the 20 pounds weight loss target fast. In addition, this method will give your brains enough time to recognize your signals, showing they are full – thus prevent overeating.
- Make food choices – you need food rich in nourishment nutrients, especially those satisfying you hours and not minutes.
Eat Protein-Rich Breakfast
Protein helps you regulate appetite hormones, thus, making you feel full. That occurs because there is a decline in hunger hormone ghrelin and an increase in satiety hormones peptide YY, cholecystokinin, and GLP-1.
A good choice of high-protein breakfast includes nut and seed butter, eggs, oats, sardines, chia seed pudding, and quinoa porridge.
Cut Back Sugars and Refined Carbohydrates
The current refined food most people take is rich in added sugars, thus, leading to obesity. These sugars not only occur in beverages but also in food.
The problem with refined carbohydrates is they are highly processed, thus lacking fiber and other nutrients. They include pasta, bread, and white rice.
When you consume these foods, they hinder your weight-loss effectiveness because they will convert to glucose rapidly.
The glucose will enter the blood, provoke insulin hormone, and promote fat storage in your adipose tissues. So, contributing to weight gain.
If you aim to lose weight, you must swap processed food with high sugar and consume healthy options.
Eat plenty of fiber
Your body will require higher fiber to enable you to lose weight effectively. It means you need dietary fiber from plant-based carbohydrates because your small intestines will not absorb – unlike starch and sugar.
Plenty of fiber in your diet increases the feeling of fullness, causing weight loss. Food rich in fiber includes fruit and vegetables; whole-grain breakfast cereals such as barley, oats, rye, whole-grain bread, whole-wheat pasta; nuts and seeds; peas, beans, and pulses.