Is It Healthy To Lose 10 Pounds in a Week? – Cleveland Clinic
We've all heard that slow and steady wins the game. But patience (and sometimes common sense) can fly out the window when you're trying to lose weight fast.
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We know that maintaining a healthy weight is good for our bodies. And, quite frankly, losing a few pounds can boost our self-image.
But if you're looking for a quick way to lose 10 pounds in a week, you're probably looking in the wrong place.
“Of course, it's possible to lose a lot of weight quickly, but when you understand what that does to your body, it's probably not a good idea,” says Marcio Griebeler, MD, an endocrinologist and obesity expert. “It's not going to give you the results you really want.”
What does rapid weight loss do to your body? Dr. Griebeler breaks it down.
Can you lose 10 pounds in a week?
Yes, it is entirely possible to lose 10 pounds a week. But that doesn't mean it's a good idea or that it will last.
Let's say you're about to go on vacation or attend a big event. Naturally, you want to look your best. correct.
So, you follow the advice of famous people Talk about Lose weight fast. Maybe you eat only vegetables for a week. Or you cut out all carbs and sugar. You kick your workout routine into hyperdrive.
Maybe it worked. Maybe you actually lost those 10 pounds in a week. It is certainly possible. But this weight loss is likely to be very short-lived.
That's because rapid weight loss is often the result of losing not just fat, but water and muscle mass, Dr. Griebeler explains. In order to lose weight successfully and sustainably, you need to burn fat and preserve muscle. It takes some time and dedication.
Effects of Crash Diets
Usually, if we want to lose some weight quickly, the first thing we do is to significantly restrict our calorie intake (aka crash diet). Of course, reducing your calorie intake for a short period of time can have an impact on your weight. But it's not something you can do long term.
“You're not going to stick to a 500-calorie-a-day diet for long,” says Dr. Griebeler. “It's not sustainable. Your body needs fuel, and it will adapt to prevent you from staying on this diet long-term.”
These adaptations are changes in your body's metabolism designed to keep you from losing weight. They are defense systems programmed by evolution to protect us from the threat of starvation.
You'll feel a surge of hunger hormones. Hormones that signal when you feel full drop dramatically. Your body conserves its energy. You lose muscle mass.
So, after you've dieted for 7 days and lost 10 pounds, what's left of you? An insatiable appetite. low energy. weakness. Bottom line: a perfect storm of eating more and exercising less.
So, what happens? Those 10 pounds you lost are now back where you started.
Aerobic exercise for fast weight loss
Aerobic exercise is great for cardiovascular health and is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. The American Heart Association recommends that we get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise (75 minutes a week if you do more vigorous aerobic activity).
So, yes, your favorite cardio workout — like running, elliptical, biking, etc. — is a great way to get your heart pumping and burn a ton of calories.
But in order to perform aerobic exercise effectively, we must provide energy to the body.
“You need to replace the calories you lose during exercise. Your body is constantly begging for them,” says Dr. Griebeler. “If you don't eat, you're going to get tired, and as a result, you won't be able to keep up with all your exercise.”
Strength Training and Weight Loss
Strength training is an important part of weight loss. Converting fat into muscle helps keep your body strong and prevents chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.
That's because building muscle can help improve body composition and boost your metabolic rate, says Dr. Griebeler. Strengthening exercise to increase muscle and reduce fat is a very healthy thing for the body. More muscle can actually help your body burn more energy at rest. So, no question, reinforcement is a good thing.
But for quick weight loss? Not that much.
Muscle is heavier than fat. So, if you're trying to lose weight fast, extra strength training won't work. (Still, as Dr. Griebeler points out, your body composition says more about your health than the number on the scale.)
What's more, building muscle takes time. It's been over a week. Here's the rub — in order to build muscle, your body needs energy. It requires you to eat calories. That's why bodybuilders are always bashing those protein shakes. So, when you restrict calories at the same time, you don't build muscle.
Sustained weight loss
It's not the advice you want to hear, but sustainable weight loss takes time. This is an obvious fact. Your body needs time to adjust to your new habits and adjust to the idea of losing weight.
Rapid weight loss is a signal to your body that you are starving. So, it fights back.
Losing weight gradually allows your body to adjust to the new normal. This is a sign that everything is fine. You got this deal. So, your body puts you in control.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you aim to lose one to two pounds per week.
That's because losing weight gradually gives your body a chance to adapt, says Dr. Griebeler. But even with such guidance, everyone responds differently to weight loss, so even if one to two pounds per week is the overall goal, your weight loss may look different than that. It doesn't matter.
Also remember that your weight is only one side of the coin. Fat loss should be the real goal. This can be done without changing the number on the scale.
“If you're building muscle, you're burning fat, even if you're the same weight or gain a little,” says Dr. Griebeler. “If you have more muscle, I can assure you that your metabolic rate will increase, you'll burn fat. And you'll be healthier overall, whether or not you're hitting your desired weight numbers.”
He also offers these quick tips for lasting weight loss:
- Focus on high-quality food. Eat more natural foods and less processed and packaged foods.
- increase exercise。 Designed to combine cardio and strength training. Start slowly and gradually increase the amount of activity.
- enough sleep“Sleep is very important to ensure that you feel refreshed the next day and have the drive and energy to maintain a healthy routine,” says Dr. Griebeler.
- keep stress levels under control. Stress eating is real. Living with stress can boost levels of hormones that stimulate appetite. “Stress is totally not good for weight loss,” he added.
- keep a food diary. Writing down what you eat (or using an app to track) can help you notice any unhealthy eating patterns and make you more aware of what you're eating and its nutritional value (or lack thereof).
If you're obese (BMI of 30 or higher), your body may be less likely to respond to these strategies, notes Dr. Griebeler. That's because obesity is a metabolic disorder that can prevent you from losing weight and keeping it off, even if you lose weight gradually. If you are obese, discuss options such as anti-obesity medications with your provider.