How much weight should I be losing?

Posted: May 13, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Realistic Goal Setting

The human body requires certain micronutrients for overall health, digestion, immune system, repair etc.
As a guideline, it is widely agreed that consuming any fewer than 1200kcals daily over a prolonged period, can cause a lack of important micronutrients and in turn result in health issues.

Therefore it is advised to stay away from “crash diets” and such like, that encourage severe under eating.

The issue now then, is that a petite person has a lower BMR than that of a severely overweight individual.

Bearing in mind that a 3500kcal deficit will bring about around 1lb weight loss it is plain to see that it is far easier to safely create that deficit with the larger individual than the smaller.
In fact severely overweight persons can often create larger calorie deficits and therefore lose more weight/body fat safely, without under eating and putting themselves at risk.

The smaller folk, who have a lower BMR and therefore fewer calories with which to work with, should work with a smaller deficit and in turn should expect slower weight loss, with importance on maintaining precious muscle tissue.

Below is an example of what can safely and effectively be achieved by various body types.

Body Type

Weekly Decrease Lbs/Kgs



Moderately Overweight






Very Lean



Alan Aragon Research Review, November 2008

Healthy Body Fat Level Guidelines





Kyle UG, et al. Nutrition. 2003 July-Aug;19(7-8):597-604

As demonstrated above, achieving successful and sustainable fat loss requires patience and perseverance.
Depending on your starting point it could take weeks, months or even years to reach your target. You will almost certainly suffer frustrations and set backs along the way.

It is important not to focus solely on the end result and instead enjoy the process or the journey, as you awake each morning feeling leaner and more in control of your body than the previous day.

Plateaus or stalls in weight loss are to be expected.

As body weight reduces over time, so too does BMR, meaning your calorie deficit decreases and in turn weight loss slows. Following successive weeks of a plateau and if there is still significant body fat to lose, it may be necessary to slightly reduce calories and again monitor weight in the following weeks.

As you achieve body fat levels on the lower end of the scale progress will slow, attempting to rush this process can reduce in muscle loss and/or a rebound in the form of binge eating.

Initially in a programme, progress will likely be made quicker than described previously.

Depending how good or bad your diet has been prior to commencing the plan, water weight will be lost along with fat during the first week or two.

This rate of weight loss will not continue and will reach the rates mentioned previously.

Factors in long term weight maintenance 

  • Social support
  • Greater initial weight loss
  • Reduced frequency of snacks
  • Flexible control over intake
  • Self monitoring
  • Coping capacity to handle cravings and apply restraint
  • More confidence and proactivity
  • Stable lifestyle

Elfhag K, Rossner S. Obes Rev. 2005 Feb;6(1):67-85



  1. mybodymytime says:

    Great post thanks for sharing your thoughts

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