Science-Backed Tricks Sneaky Millennial Women Use to Lose Weight

A lot of millennial women have trouble picking up the correct diet to lose weight.

There is simply too much misinformation out there about what is actually proven by science and what is just a myth.

The truth is, for some women even the idea of following a specific diet is not the best option.

Most diets lead to temporary weight loss and once you stop following them you gain all the fat back.

This is why it is much better to change your habits instead and follow a few tips that are proven by science to be effective and healthy to lose weight.

Science-Backed Tricks Sneaky Millennial Women Use to Lose Weight Most diets lead to temporary weight loss and once you stop following them you gain all the fat back. This is why it is much better to change your habits instead and follow a few tips that are proven by science to be effective and healthy. #weightlossforwomen #countingcalories #drinkwater #loseweight

Consume more protein, especially during breakfast

A key point in every diet for weight loss should be maintaining good satiety when on reduced energy intake.

In order to provide a good feeling of fullness, the diet should be sufficient in protein.

Studies show that a protein-rich breakfast leads to better satiety when compared to alternatives that are higher in carbohydrates (1).

In the study, better hunger management resulted in lower total calories consumed and more fat loss.

That satiety is not just related to the slower digestion of protein, but also to a higher release of appetite-suppressing hormones such as glucagon (2).

Another study showed that a protein-rich egg breakfast is more effective in weight management than high-carbohydrate alternatives when both are paired with calorie restriction (3).

Evidence suggests that protein in the form of whey supplement, which is rather quickly absorbable, also is quite effective as part of a weight-loss diet (4).

Furthermore, when we are slimming down, we want to keep our metabolism fast as much as possible.

Although slowing it down is unavoidable when losing kilograms of weight, your metabolism will be much better preserved if you also preserve your muscles.

For an average woman, muscle makes up for at least 30% of your body weight. It is also almost 3 times more metabolically active compared to fat tissue.

Muscle tissue has a large impact on overall insulin sensitivity, it burns glucose and fat.

This is why we want to keep it as much as possible and protein again comes to our aid.

Studies associate higher protein intake with much better preservation of muscle mass when in a caloric deficit (5).

This means that protein does not just help us lose fat, it also helps us maintain our progress by preserving our metabolism.


Protein helps with satiety and adherence to your diet, while it also preserves your muscle mass and metabolism during energy restriction.

Increase the amount of dietary fiber

Another nutrient that helps with satiation and hunger control when in a caloric deficit is fiber.

Dietary fiber is a type of carbohydrate, which cannot be digested by our gut.

It does not result in an increase in blood glucose levels and it does not yield any energy.

However, fiber is extremely healthy and can prevent a number of diseases.

There are two main types of fiber – soluble and non-soluble.

Soluble is contained in oats, beans, peas, lentils, apples, citrus, berries, chia, etc.

It has an effect of reducing the speed of digestion of other carbohydrates, thus it leads to slower changes in blood glucose.

It also reduces the amount of cholesterol in the blood.

Non-soluble fiber sources are whole grains, legumes, carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, green leafy vegetables, and others.

They act as ballast in our gastrointestinal systems and aid the passage of the food.

Non-soluble fiber prevents constipation and protects against one of the most common types of cancer – colorectal cancer.

Multiple epidemiological studies associate dietary fiber with lower body weight (6).

This is caused by increased satiety and reduced overall energy intake without restricting it on purpose.

Especially vegetables and fruits are one of the main sources of dietary fiber which are also very low in calories.

They are shown by evidence to enhance weight loss and reduce the total amount of body fat (7).

The recommended amount of fresh fruits and vegetables is at least 400g daily.


Dietary fiber can help with hunger management and reduction of your energy intake, while it also has multiple health benefits and reduces the risk of many chronic diseases like cancer and diabetes.

Drink some water before a meal

Drinking water prior to a meal can also aid weight loss.

Water will create volume in the stomach and that will help you reach satiety much faster with lower amounts of food.

There are numerous studies showing that consuming more water, especially before a meal helps with weight loss.

One of the studies included 48 participants and showed 44% greater weight loss amongst the subjects who drank 500ml prior to a meal, compared to the non-water group (8).

Another study, performed specifically at breakfast, associated consuming 500ml prior to the meal with a 13% reduction in the energy intake (9).

Previously, there have been claims and concerns that water during a meal might dilute the stomach acids and enzymes and disturb normal digestion.

However, the stomach itself secretes water, along with acid and enzymes during digestion.

In fact, the water is needed to provide an environment as a solvent for the proper function of these chemicals.

Studies show that our gastrointestinal system is highly adaptive to the contents of our food and deal equally well in terms of digestion, no matter if the meal is mostly solid or liquid (10).

Another false claim about consuming water with or prior to a meal is faster stomach emptying.

No such phenomenon has been observed by science (11).

Unless you are a pregnant woman or suffering from severe gastroesophageal reflux and your doctor has advised against it, drinking water prior to a meal will be beneficial for your health and weight loss goals.


Drinking water prior to a meal can help you create the feeling of fullness much faster and restrict your total amount of energy intake which will result in weight loss.

Replace the bad habits with healthy ones

A lot of people are eating while working, while in a hurry from somewhere or eating in front of the TV or the PC.

For some, it might be because they have busy schedules and for others – out of a bad habit.

However, such behavior affects the quality and quantity of the foods we consume.

This is why being aware of what you eat is a key point in successful weight loss.

As the data of some controlled trials suggests, increased mindfulness ultimately results in a reduction of caloric intake and increased success in long term weight loss (12).

This is achieved by increased awareness of things like emotional eating and actual physical hunger, food cravings, taste satisfaction, and satiation.

In the study, participants were not instructed to avoid particular foods but encouraged to eat favorite foods in smaller portions that fit within their calorie goals.

Also, participants were encouraged to practice awareness and savoring of food tastes and textures, with a particular focus on drawing hedonic value from smaller amounts of highly preferred foods, such as sweets.

The practice of mindful eating also includes: not eating while on foot, avoiding the TV or PC when eating, choosing higher-quality foods and eating at a moderate tempo.

According to studies, eating slower, helps with satiation and pleasure from food, while it is also helpful with reducing energy intake without restrictions on purpose (13).

Another study explains these effects by the increased synthesis of hunger-suppressing hormones (14).

Simply eating slower and chewing the food more, gives the brain more time to send signals for satiety.

Also, it gives more time to savor the food and thus receive pleasure without overeating.


Being aware of the quality and quantity of the food you consume and avoiding distractions while eating can help you control your habits. This will allow you to consume higher quality food, eat slower and achieve satiety and pleasure without overeating.


A lot of people have been found to underestimate the total amount of their energy intake with food (15).

Believing that you are consuming less than your actual calories can prevent you from changing some bad habits and ultimately stop your progress.

This is one of the reasons self-monitoring can help you with your goals.

By measuring the energy you consume, you can see your actual intake and compare it to your daily needs.

Another self-monitoring aspect is weighing yourself regularly.

This habit will allow you to detect changes in your body weight before they have escalated into weight gain.

It also allows you to determine the effectiveness of other weight loss measures such as diet and exercise.

Science shows that overall all aspects of self-monitoring including measuring intake, regular weighing, and exercise are associated with improved and consistent weight loss (16).

A very commonly used method for self-monitoring are different mobile apps.

Studies show that they are just as effective for monitoring weight and intake as any other (17).

However, weighting your meals and counting every bit of a calorie can prove rather stressful for some people.

Although it is a good way to detect unhealthy habits or highly caloric foods in your diet, being too precise is not sustainable in the long-term for most people.

This is why a much more effective strategy is simply controlling the size and ratios of your portions.

Eating most of your calories during main meals and reducing the size of your portion has been proven as an easy method for self-control (18).

However, other studies show that for people with obesity this might not be the most effective cue, as they tend to get multiple refills when the plate is smaller (19).

This is why even better option might be applying a proper ratio of food products – at least a quarter of it being lean protein and including vegetables in each and every portion.

This will make the meal much more satiating as well as look bigger.


Self-monitoring of your diet, weight-loss progress and exercise routine is proven by multiple studies to improve control over personal weight.

Keep up your motivation

Your mindset is also very important when you are on a weight loss journey.

You need to keep up your motivation and find support in order to stick to your plan.

No diet or exercise regime is effective unless you can be consistent with it for the long term.

This is why you should start by formulating your exact personal reasons to lose weight.

The reasons might be to improve your health, prevent diseases, or just to look better and feel more confident.

It is a good idea to list the reasons down. Later if you start doubting yourself you can revise your reasons and get motivated again.

It is also important to set proper goals when you map out your journey to weight loss.

Your goals have to be small and realistic. Studies show that goal setting is a great addition to weight reduction programs (20).

However, if your goals and expectations are unrealistic, this might have the opposite effect, leading to quick disappointment and abandonment of the whole plan.

Finding support from friends and family is also a useful method to keep up your motivation and stick to your routine.


The most important aspect that determines the effectiveness of any diet or physical routine is adherence. In order to be consistent, you need to stay motivated.

Sleep is just as important if not more than diet and exercise

An often overlooked aspect of successful weight loss is getting enough sleep in your schedule.

As it turns out, a massive amount of data shows that sleep length and quality are just as important as diet and physical activity when it comes to factors affecting appetite and body weight.

A small study involving 12 men found out that acute sleep deprivation increases the subsequent energy intake by more than 500 kcals on average (21).

A literature review of data published in the span of over 40 years suggests associations between shortened sleep and future obesity and diabetes (22).

Epidemiological studies show a probable link between sleep deprivation and appetite dysregulation.

In a cohort study of 83,377 men and women was found an association between self-reported sleep duration and weight change (23).

Compared to 7-8 hours of sleep, shorter durations were associated with higher risk and incidence of weight gain.

A meta-analysis of more than 600,000 participants from 30 studies found consistently increased risk of obesity amongst short-sleepers in both children and adults (24).

According to the scientific data that we have gathered so far, reduced sleep duration promotes hunger and obesity for a number of reasons, including changes in hormones related to stress and hunger.

A study involving 17 subjects found out that acute sleep deprivation, even if just for a day, leads to a significant rise in stress indicators, such as the stress hormone cortisol and some markers of inflammation (25).

Another study with more than 1000 volunteers found out that sleep deprivation also affects the levels of hormones related to appetite, such as leptin and ghrelin (26).

Amongst the participants, the levels of the hormone that stimulates hunger – ghrelin were elevated while the amount of leptin that suppresses it was decreased.

All these mechanisms combined result in higher appetite, higher energy intake, and disturbed metabolism ultimately resulting in gaining excess fat.


An enormous amount of research has proven that aiming for at least 7-8 hours of sleep is crucial for successful weight management and prevention of obesity.

More exercise boosts weight loss and metabolism

Exercise is another scientifically proven way to lose weight.

Although studies show that the only factor required for weight loss is creating a caloric deficit (27), adding the proper exercise brings additional benefits.

First of all, exercise can burn an additional amount of energy, thus allowing more variety in your diet while you are still being able to maintain a caloric deficit.

Secondly, an exercise that normally stimulates muscle building can help you maintain your fat-free body weight and metabolism.

As we previously mentioned, muscle is important for your overall energy expenditure.

This is why certain types of exercise such as training using weights instead of cardio can keep your metabolism fast while losing fat.

A study comparing 44 women which are either dieting and cycling or dieting and resistance training found out that the latter preserved much better their metabolic rate (28).

Another, much more recent study included 94 female participants, again comparing cardio to resistance training, and found out that resistance training allowed them to keep more muscle during weight loss (29).

By reducing the amount of muscle loss and keeping your metabolic rate higher, you will reduce your chances of weight cycling.

Weight cycling is also known as the yo-yo effect. This is the process of regaining all the fat back after you stop dieting and it is one of the biggest problems of modern diets.


The proper type of exercise such as training with weights can help you burn more calories, have more variety in your diet, and help maintain a healthy metabolism.

Find a way to cope with high levels of stress

Stress has a negative effect when it comes to weight loss.

For example, too much stress can lead to emotional eating. A lot of people try to deal with negative emotions by overeating.

Also, the increased level of cortisol can negatively impact your overall metabolism.

The stress hormone raises blood sugar and might even lead to loss of muscle tissue when chronically elevated.

Studies show that stress management programs are effective in facilitating weight loss (30).

Stress management techniques include listing down your problems, meditation, muscle relaxation, diaphragmatic breathing, etc.

Getting enough sleep and exercising also help with managing stress.


Managing stress properly is proven to help with losing fat and weight management.

Consult with a specialist about your relationship with food

An analysis of 25 studies including a total of almost 200,000 participants, and using the Yale Food Addiction Scale to assess their dietary habits, showed that almost 20% of all subjects score high for food addictions (31).

In such cases, simply following tips or a diet plan without professional consultation with a medical doctor might be both ineffective and dangerous.

Some diets might only worsen the symptoms of eating disorders.

A specialist in nutrition can advise you about which plans are suitable for you and which are not.

A medical doctor will also take into consideration any other risk factors, chronic conditions or even biochemical tests before starting a restrictive diet.

Also, such a consult will provide more motivation for you, as it creates a feeling of responsibility.

Furthermore, evidence shows that motivational interviews with professionals improve weight loss (32).


Consult with a physician can be helpful because prolonged dieting and following a restrictive meal plan might increase the risk of eating disorders.

To sum everything up on losing weight as a millennial women

It is much more sustainable in the long term to create healthy habits based on actual science than to follow a specific diet.

Some of these habits include picking your food carefully, being aware of what you eat, when you eat it and were, eating enough protein, more fruits and vegetables, drinking more water, and monitoring your progress.

You need to stay motivated and be consistent, otherwise, no routine will help you lose weight.

Adding exercise can further help you lose weight and relieve stress.

If you still have trouble losing weight, it might be best to consult with a professional.

Science-Backed Tricks Sneaky Millennial Women Use to Lose Weight Most diets lead to temporary weight loss and once you stop following them you gain all the fat back. This is why it is much better to change your habits instead and follow a few tips that are proven by science to be effective and healthy. #weightlossforwomen #countingcalories #drinkwater #loseweight
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