How to Burn Fat Without Losing Muscle : Maxener Wellness

Aim to lose one to two pounds per week. Safe weight loss is considered losing about one to two pounds per week. Losing weight faster increases your risk for muscle mass loss.

  • It’s generally recommended to never consume less than 1200 calories daily. Calories that are too low for your age, gender or activity level put you at risk for muscle mass loss as you’re not consuming adequate nutrients for your body to function normally.
  • Losing one to two pounds per week results from cutting out about 500 calories daily. Do not cut out more than this.

Eat adequate protein. When you cut out calories, you limit how much protein you can consume throughout the day. Not being able to eat adequate protein may also result in muscle mass loss.

  • At a minimum, women need 46 g of protein daily and men need 56 g of protein daily. This is easily met when you consume a source of protein at every meal and snack. Do not consume less than this amount.
  • Stick to high quality sources of protein such as lean red meat, poultry, seafood, beans, lentils, tofu, nuts or natural nut butter, eggs and low fat dairy.
  • One serving of protein is about 3-4 ounces or a cut of meat that’s about the size of your palm or a deck of cards.

Fill up on fruits and vegetables. Both of these food groups are fairly low in calories but high in nutrients and can provide extra bulk to your diet. This can help make a lower calorie meal plan more filling and satisfying.

  • It’s recommended to consume two to three servings of fruit daily and four to six servings of vegetables daily. To meet these recommendations, you’ll most likely need to consume a fruit or vegetable at each meal.
  • One small fruit or 1/2 cup counts as one serving of fruit and one cup or two cups of leafy greens counts as one serving of vegetables.

Consume two to three servings of carbohydrates daily. Following a lower carb diet can help you lose weight more quickly and lose more fat compared to low-fat diets or only low calorie diets.

  • A low carb diet focuses on limiting how many carbohydrates you eat within a day. Depending on your diet, it could range from 60–200 g of carbohydrate daily. The fewer amount of carbs you allow in your diet, the more restrictive your food choices will be.
  • Carbohydrates are found in many food groups including: grains, fruits, starchy vegetables, dairy and legumes. Consume just one to three servings of these daily to support weight loss. Read packages or use a food journal to find out how many carbs are in the foods you’re eating.
  • A low-carb diet with higher protein has shown the best potential for fat loss and maintaining muscle mass.
  • Talk to your doctor prior to starting a low carb diet. While safe for the general healthy adult, following a low-carb diet might not be appropriate for everyone.

Consider protein supplements. Protein supplements are drinks that are moderately low in calories and high in protein. Getting another 15–30 g of protein daily from these drinks may help you meet your minimum protein intake, increase weight loss and prevent loss of muscle mass.

  • Whey protein is a high quality protein for your body. It has all the essential amino acids your body needs and cannot make itself. If purchasing a protein supplement, try to purchase whey protein if possible.
  • If you have a whey allergy, or do not want to use whey, consider using another source of protein. Egg and soy protein are appropriate alternatives.
  • Protein supplements have been shown to be especially effective at maintaining and even building lean muscle mass when they are consumed after a workout.
  • If choosing to use a protein supplement to help increase weight loss, make sure to pick a supplement that’s not overly high in calories. Also don’t mix a lot of ingredients or high calorie ingredients that increase your supplement’s total calorie level. This may cause weight gain if it adds too many calories to your diet.
  • You can purchase protein supplements at a variety of stores. Look for them at a well-stocked grocery store, some pharmacies, health food stores, sports/nutrition stores or online.

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