Losing weight isn’t an easy process, no matter how big or small the goal.
When it comes to losing 50 kg or more, the large number can seem quite intimidating, especially if you’re just starting.
Fortunately, there are proven strategies that can help you.
Here are 10 tips to help you lose 50 kg safely.
1. Track your calorie intake
To lose weight, your body needs to burn more calories than it consumes.
There are two ways to do this — eating fewer calories or exercising more.
Tracking your calorie intake helps you stay aware of how many calories you consume daily, so you can know if you’re on the right track or need to adjust.
A review of 37 studies, including more than 16,000 participants, found that weight loss programs that tracked calorie intake led to losing 3.3 kg more per year than programs that did not.
The number of calories you need to consume daily depends on various factors, such as your starting weight, lifestyle, sex, and activity level.
Use the calculator here to determine how many calories you need to eat to lose weight.
The two most common ways to track calorie intake are with an app or food journal.
That said, it’s important to note that simply tracking calorie intake may not be the most sustainable approach to losing weight.
However, tracking calories can work exceptionally well when paired with healthy lifestyle modifications, such as eating more vegetables or exercising regularly.
Summary: Tracking your calorie intake can help you stay on track with your weight loss goal, especially when combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle modifications.
2. Increase your fiber intake
Fiber is a type of indigestible carbohydrate that can aid weight loss.
This is because fiber slows the stomach’s rate of emptying its contents, which may help you feel full for longer.
In addition, studies have shown that fiber, especially soluble fiber, may reduce the production of hunger hormones, such as ghrelin, and increase the production of fullness hormones, such as cholecystokinin (CCK), glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), and peptide YY (PYY).
By curbing your appetite, fiber may help reduce calorie intake and lead to effortless weight loss.
For example, one dated review found that increasing daily fiber intake by 14 grams was linked to eating 10% fewer calories daily and weight loss of 1.9 kg, without making other lifestyle or diet changes.
That said, more recent research is needed.
Foods that are high in fiber include most vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, and seeds. Alternatively, you could try taking a fiber supplement, such as glucomannan.
Summary: Fiber can help you stay full for longer, which in turn may reduce your calorie intake and help you lose weight.
3. Increase your protein intake
To lose 50 kg, increasing your protein intake is essential.
Diets higher in protein have been shown to boost your metabolism, curb your appetite, preserve muscle mass, and may reduce harmful belly fat.
In fact, research has shown that simply following a higher protein diet may help you burn an additional 80–100 calories per day.
In one study, women with excess weight whose diet comprised 30% protein lost 5 kg over 12 weeks, without restricting their calorie intake.
Moreover, a higher protein diet may help prevent weight regain. For instance, a study found that consuming supplemental protein, which resulted in a diet comprising 18% protein compared with 15% in another study group, prevented weight regain by as much as 50%.
Choosing healthy foods, such as meats, seafood, eggs, nuts, seeds, and legumes in favor of other foods is a great way to increase your protein intake.
Summary: Increasing your protein intake may help you lose weight by boosting your metabolism, curbing your appetite, and reducing belly fat.
4. Cut back on refined carbs
Reducing your refined carb intake is an effective way to lose weight.
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Refined carbs, also known as simple carbs, are sugars and refined grains that have been stripped of nutrients and fiber during processing. Familiar sources of refined carbs include white bread, white flour, pasta, sweets, and pastries.
Refined carbs are not only a poor source of nutrients but also tend to have a high glycemic index. This means they are digested and absorbed quickly.
This can cause rapid spikes and dips in blood sugars, followed by increased cravings, hunger, and a higher risk of overeating.
In addition, some research has linked a higher intake of refined carbs to carrying more visceral fat — a type of fat that is linked to a higher risk of chronic diseases like heart disease.
For example, a study including 2,834 participants discovered that a higher intake of refined carbs was linked to carrying more belly fat, whereas a higher intake of whole grains was linked to carrying less belly fat.
Also, it’s a good idea to cut back on soda, juice, and energy drinks. These beverages are often packed with sugar and calories, lack other nutrients, and contribute to weight gain over time without filling you up.
Aim to swap refined carbs for whole-grain alternatives, such as brown rice, quinoa, couscous, and whole-grain bread, or for more high-protein foods.
Summary: Choosing more whole-grain carbs and protein-rich foods instead of refined carbs can help you stay full for longer and aid weight loss.
5. Hold yourself accountable
With a goal such as losing 50 kg, willpower alone is not always enough to ensure long-term success.
That’s where accountability is essential. It helps you stay on the right path to weight loss success and allows you to adjust.
One way to stay accountable is to weigh yourself more frequently. Research has shown that people who weigh themselves more frequently are more likely to lose weight and keep it off, compared with people who don’t weigh themselves as frequently.
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Another way to stay accountable is to keep a food journal. It allows you to keep track of your food intake, which can help you lose weight and keep it off longer.
Lastly, you could try partnering with a friend with similar weight loss goals or joining an in-person or online weight loss community. Doing so can help you with your goal and make things fun to help keep you motivated.
Summary: Staying accountable can help you lose weight. Several ways to do so is weighing yourself regularly, keeping a food journal, and having an accountability partner.
6. Fill up on vegetables
Though most people know that vegetables are very healthy, research shows that around 91% of people in the United States do not eat enough of them.
In addition to being healthy, vegetables have other qualities that can help you lose weight.
To start, vegetables are a good source of fiber — a nutrient that can slow the rate of stomach emptying and increase feelings of fullness.
Also, vegetables tend to have a high water content, which gives them a low energy density. This means vegetables are low in calories for their weight.
Consistently choosing low-energy density foods, such as vegetables, in place of refined carbs, allows you to eat the same quantity of food and still slash your calorie intake.
In fact, studies show that adults who eat vegetables more frequently tend to weigh less.
Summary: Vegetables are high in fiber and have a low energy density, meaning they can help you stay full for longer while consuming fewer calories.
7. Do more cardio
Exercise is essential when it comes to losing a lot of weight.
Cardio, also known as aerobic exercise, is a popular form of physical activity that helps burn calories and promotes heart health.
In fact, studies have shown that cardio alone can aid fat loss.
For example, a study of 141 participants with excess weight or obesity analyzed the weight loss effects of doing 400 or 600 calories worth of cardio 5 times per week for 10 months, without watching their calorie intake.
Researchers found that participants who did 400 and 600 calories worth of cardio lost an average of 3.9 kg and 5.2 kg, respectively.
Similarly, another study with 141 participants observed that doing just 40 minutes of cardio 3 times per week for 6 months led to an average 9% decrease in body weight.
In addition, studies have shown that cardio can help you burn harmful belly fat, which is also known as visceral fat. This type of fat sits in the abdominal cavity and is linked to a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers.
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If you are not used to cardio, try walking more frequently during the week and slowly progress toward jogging or running as you begin to feel more comfortable. If walking puts too much stress on your joints, try doing low-impact cardio exercises, such as water walking or cycling.
Summary: Cardio helps you burn calories, aiding weight and fat loss.
8. Try resistance training
Resistance training, commonly called weight lifting, can assist in weight loss.
It involves working against a force to improve muscle strength and endurance. Though it’s commonly done with weights, you can do it with just your body weight.
Resistance training can aid weight loss by slightly increasing your metabolism, causing your body to burn more calories at rest.
For example, a study of 61 people found that 9 months of regular weight lifting increased the number of calories they burned at rest by 5%, on average.
Similarly, another study noted that 10 weeks of regular weight lifting increased the number of calories burned by 7%, helped reduce blood pressure levels, and led to an average of 1.8 kg of fat loss.
The easiest way to get started is to go to the gym, but you can try resistance training exercises, such as squats, lunges, sit-ups, and planks, at home using your body weight.
If you have never been to the gym before, consider getting a personal trainer to help you understand how to use the equipment properly and reduce your risk of injury.
Summary: Resistance training helps preserve muscle mass and may boost your metabolism, aiding weight loss.
9. Practice mindful eating
Mindful eating involves practicing mindfulness and focusing on being present in the moment when you eat, being aware of your physical and psychological hunger signals, and paying attention to your emotions.
There are several ways to practice mindful eating. Still, the most common ways include eating slowly, chewing food thoroughly, and avoiding distractions such as your phone, computer, or TV.
Research has shown that eating slowly — a mindful eating practice — can help you eat less while feeling fuller and more satisfied.
Another study of 17 men observed that eating slowly led to a more significant release of fullness hormones, such as peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide-1, as well as greater feelings of fullness.
Additionally, a review of 19 studies found that incorporating mindfulness into a weight loss regimen in 68% of the studies led to weight loss.
Summary: Incorporating mindful eating into your weight loss routine can help you eat less, lose weight, and enjoy food more.
10. Consult a dietitian
With a significant weight loss goal like losing 50 kg, it’s an excellent idea to seek the support of a qualified professional, such as a registered dietitian.
A dietitian can help you determine the best way to lose excess fat without being too restrictive and offer you support along your journey.
What’s more, studies have shown that working with a dietitian on your weight loss journey can lead to significantly more weight loss than going at it alone and help you maintain the weight loss afterward.
Gathering a dietitian’s input is especially important if you have a complex medical condition. A dietitian can ensure you lose weight safely, without significantly compromising your health.
Summary: A dietitian can help kick-start your weight loss and point you in the right direction. This is especially true if you have a complex medical condition.
How fast can you lose 50 kg safely?
It’s important to note that losing 50 kg will likely take at least 6 months to a year or longer.
Most experts recommend a slow but steady rate of weight loss — such as 0.5–1 kg of fat loss, or around 1% of your body weight, per week.
People with a higher initial body weight should expect to lose more weight than people with lighter initial body weight. However, the rate of weight loss tends to be similar percentage-wise.
For example, a person weighing 150 kg may lose up to 5 kg over their first 2 weeks of dieting.
Meanwhile, a person of the same age and sex weighing 70 kg may only lose 2 kg, despite consuming a similar calorie intake and exercising similar amounts.
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However, it’s quite common to experience more rapid weight loss when you first start a weight loss program, particularly if you are following a low-carb diet.
This is commonly due to a loss of water weight. As your body burns more calories than it consumes, it dips into its reserve fuel sources, such as glycogen — the stored form of sugar.
Glycogen molecules are bound to water, so when the body uses glycogen, it releases its bound water.
Though most people want to lose weight fast, it’s essential not to lose too much weight too quickly.
Rapid weight loss may come with several health risks, including:
- hair loss
- muscle loss
- menstrual irregularities
Summary: You can safely lose 0.5–1 kg of fat per week or around 1% of your body weight.
Though losing 50 kg may seem like an intimidating goal, it is possible and can be done safely by making several diet and lifestyle adjustments.
Proven strategies to help you lose weight include tracking your calories, increasing your protein intake, eating more fiber and vegetables, cutting back on refined carbs, doing more cardio and resistance training, practicing mindful eating, and holding yourself accountable.
If you’re still unsure where to start, it’s a good idea to seek professional support from a dietitian, as they can point you in the right direction, especially if you have an existing medical condition.
With a little time, patience, and a good support system, it’s possible to lose 50 kg or more in under a year, depending on your starting point.