Green tea is often associated with health, and for good reason.
Not only is it packed with beneficial antioxidants and other powerful nutrients, it’s also one of the most effective drinks for weight loss.
Drinking green tea has been shown to decrease body weight and body fat in several studies.
A review of 14 studies found that people who drank high-concentration green tea for 12 weeks lost an average of 0.44 to 7.7 pounds (0.2 to 3.5 kg) more than those who did not drink green tea (1Trusted Source).
It should be noted that this benefit is linked to green tea preparations that contain high amounts of catechins, antioxidants that may increase fat burning and boost metabolism (2Trusted Source).
Matcha is a type of green tea that contains a higher amount of catechins than loose leaf green tea, which makes it a good choice for weight loss (3Trusted Source).
One study found that women who consumed 3 grams of matcha per day experienced greater fat burning during exercise compared to women who did not drink matcha (4Trusted Source).
Plus, green tea contains caffeine, which can help promote weight loss by boosting energy levels and improving performance while exercising (5Trusted Source, 6Trusted Source).
What’s more, people who drink green tea tend to have lower blood pressure and a lower risk of developing diseases such as heart disease, certain cancers and diabetes (6Trusted Source).
SUMMARYDrinking green tea may help you lose weight by boosting metabolism and encouraging fat loss.
Coffee is used by people around the world to boost energy levels and lift mood.
This is because coffee contains caffeine, a substance that acts as a stimulant in the body and may benefit weight loss.
Coffee can reduce energy intake and boost metabolism, which may help you lose weight.
One study in 33 overweight adults found that those who drank coffee containing 6 mg of caffeine per kilogram of body weight consumed significantly fewer overall calories than those who drank less caffeine or no caffeine at all (7Trusted Source).
Caffeine intake has also been shown to increase metabolism and promote fat burning in several other studies (8Trusted Source, 9Trusted Source).
Coffee drinkers may have an easier time maintaining their weight loss over time, as well.
A study in over 2,600 people found that those who were successful in maintaining weight loss over time drank significantly more caffeinated beverages than a control group (5Trusted Source).
SUMMARYCaffeinated beverages like coffee may stimulate weight loss by increasing metabolism, decreasing calorie intake and stimulating fat burning.
Like green tea, black tea contains compounds that may stimulate weight loss.
Black tea is a type of tea that has undergone more oxidation (exposure to air) than other types of teas, resulting in a stronger flavor and darker color.
Black tea is high in polyphenols, including a group of polyphenolic compounds called flavonoids. Polyphenols are powerful antioxidants that may help reduce body weight.
Studies have shown that the polyphenols found in black tea promote weight loss by reducing calorie intake, stimulating fat breakdown and boosting the growth of friendly gut bacteria (9Trusted Source, 10Trusted Source).
A study in 111 people demonstrated that those who drank 3 cups of black tea daily for three months lost more weight and had greater reductions in waist circumference compared to a control group (11Trusted Source).
Another study in 2,734 women found that those with higher intakes of flavonoid-rich foods and beverages like black tea had significantly lower body fat and belly fat than women who consumed less dietary flavonoids (12Trusted Source).
SUMMARYBlack tea contains polyphenols, antioxidants that have been shown to reduce body weight. Studies show that drinking black tea may help reduce body fat and encourage weight loss.powered by Rubicon Project
Increasing your water intake is one of the simplest ways to improve overall health.
Drinking more water may also benefit your waistline by keeping you full in between meals and increasing the number of calories you burn.
Research suggests that having water before meals can set you up for success when trying to cut back on calories and lose weight.
A study in 48 overweight adults found that those who drank 500 ml (17 ounces) of water before meals while following a low-calorie diet lost 44% more weight over 12 weeks than those who did not drink water before meals (13Trusted Source).
Drinking cold water increases resting energy expenditure, which is the number of calories you burn while resting.
For example, a study in 21 overweight children showed that resting energy expenditure was increased by up to 25% for 40 minutes after drinking 10 ml of cold water per kilogram of body weight (14Trusted Source).
SUMMARYDrinking more water can help burn calories and decrease intake at meals, which can result in weight loss.
Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, a compound that may stimulate weight loss by decreasing insulin levels, improving metabolism, suppressing appetite and burning fat (15Trusted Source, 16Trusted Source).
Animal studies have shown that acetic acid can prevent weight gain and decrease fat accumulation in the belly and liver (15Trusted Source).
Although research is limited, there is some evidence that vinegar is effective in promoting weight loss in humans.
A study in 144 obese adults demonstrated that drinking a daily beverage containing 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of vinegar per day resulted in significant reductions in body weight, waist circumference and belly fat compared to a placebo group (17Trusted Source).
Apple cider vinegar slows stomach emptying, which helps keep you fuller for a longer period of time and may reduce overeating (18Trusted Source).
However, it should be noted that drinking acidic beverages like apple cider vinegar can erode teeth, which is why it should be consumed sparingly and always followed by rinsing with water (19Trusted Source).
SUMMARYAlthough more research is needed on the risks and benefits of apple cider vinegar, consuming a small amount per day may encourage weight loss.
Ginger is popularly used as a spice to add flavor to dishes and as an herbal remedy to treat a number of conditions such as nausea, colds and arthritis (20Trusted Source).
Human and animal studies have also shown this flavorful root to have a beneficial effect on weight loss.
A study found that rats fed a high-fat diet supplemented with 5% ginger powder for four weeks had significant reductions in body weight and significant improvements in HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels compared to rats fed a high-fat diet without ginger (21Trusted Source).
Although this study used a concentrated ginger powder, a study in humans found that ginger tea also helps reduce appetite and increase calorie expenditure.
One study in 10 overweight men found that when they drank 2 grams of ginger powder dissolved in hot water with breakfast, they experienced increased fullness and decreased hunger compared to days when no ginger tea was consumed.
Plus, the study showed that the ginger tea increased the thermic effect of food (the number of calories needed to digest and absorb food) by 43 calories (22Trusted Source).
Although that isn’t a huge number of calories, this suggests that — when combined with its satiating properties — ginger tea could be an effective way to enhance weight loss.
SUMMARYHuman and animal studies indicate that ginger can promote fullness, decrease appetite and increase metabolism, which is helpful when trying to lose weight.
Beverages that are high in protein can curb hunger, decrease appetite and promote fullness, which is important when trying to shed excess pounds.
There are countless protein powdersavailable to consumers that make preparing a quick, healthy snack or meal a breeze.
Protein increases levels of hunger-reducing hormones like GLP-1 while decreasing ghrelin, a hormone that drives appetite (23Trusted Source).
A study in 90 overweight adults found that those who consumed 56 grams of whey protein daily for 23 weeks lost 5 pounds (2.3 kg) more fat than a control group who consumed no whey protein but the same number of calories (24Trusted Source).
Whey, pea and hemp protein powders are just a few varieties that can add a satisfying protein boost to shakes and smoothies that may help you drop pounds.
SUMMARYProtein drinks decrease appetite and increase fullness. Protein powders can be easily added to any beverage for a quick and satisfying snack or meal.
Although fruit juice has been linked to weight gain, drinking vegetable juice may have the opposite effect (25Trusted Source).
In one study, adults who drank 16 ounces of low-sodium vegetable juice while following a low-calorie diet lost significantly more weight than those who did not.
Plus, the vegetable juice group significantly increased their vegetable consumption and significantly decreased their carb intake, two factors that are important for weight loss (26Trusted Source).
Consuming whole vegetables whenever possible is the best choice for health due to the high amount of fiber that is lost in the juicing process.
However, consuming a low-calorie vegetable juice can increase your vegetable intake and may even help you lose weight.
SUMMARYAlthough whole vegetables make the best choice, drinking vegetable juice may encourage weight loss when incorporated into a healthy diet.
“Yoga can be a good source of exercise,” said Jorianne Numbers, MS, an exercise physiologist with Northwestern Medicine. At the most basic level, she said, yoga is a form of movement that helps you burn calories, which is a major part of losing weight (though your exact amount burned will depend on your height, weight, and gender).
But there’s more behind yoga’s relationship with weight loss than first meets the eye. An effective practice also fosters a mind-body connection that makes you more mindful in every facet of your life. “Yoga brings you into a heightened state of awareness,” explained Lara Heimann, physical therapist, yoga instructor, and founder of LYT Method, a yoga certification program. Moving through different poses and holds increases your awareness of your body, and that can translate to other effective weight-loss habits, like eating healthy, which is key for losing weight no matter what exercise you’re doing. (Try this two-week clean eating plan to get started.) “The congruency between mindfulness on and off of the mat is what can make yoga more effective for weight loss than other forms of exercise,” Lara told POPSUGAR.
Yoga has long been regarded as an effective way to relieve stress, and that on its own can be a weight-loss tool. “Having a less stressful life, and fewer stress hormones such as cortisol, can help anyone lead a healthier lifestyle,” explained Liza Janda, a certified yoga instructor at Yoga Janda. Cortisol is an appetite stimulant, hence why we tend to eat (and overeat) when we’re stressed out and to crave unhealthy foods in particular. A relaxing yoga practice can help you deal with stress in a healthier way and even avoid it, and the related weight gain, altogether. (Try this relaxing yoga sequence or one of these stress-busting yoga videos to see for yourself.)
If you’re looking for pure calorie burn, our experts agreed that fast-paced Vinyasa yoga is the practice to choose. “A good Vinyasa class will take you through a variety of movements, with a focus on integrating your core and weight-bearing on your hands and feet,” Lara explained. Imagine a classic flow from plank to tricep push-up to upward facing dog – you’re getting a core burn, working your triceps, then using your arms to hold up your bodyweight as you stretch. This kind of weight-bearing move “increases heart rate and builds muscle,” Liza told POPSUGAR. The more muscle you build, the more calories you’ll burn even after you’re done exercising.
Power yoga is another good choice, Jorianne told POPSUGAR, though it’s more intense and better suited for people who are already in good shape. “In power yoga, there is less meditation and more of a focus on standing poses and faster-paced movement,” she explained. Your heart will pump even harder than in a Vinyasa class, which is good news for losing weight; Liza recommended aiming for a heart rate that’s 55 to 85 percent of your maximum to get the most calories burned out of a class. (Use this guide to calculate your max heart rate and find your target zones.)
And what about hot yoga? “Vinyasa classes burn more calories than the hot yoga,” Lara told POPSUGAR. “Hot yoga makes you feel like you’re working harder than you actually are because your body is just trying to thermoregulate.” Basically, sweating more doesn’t mean you’re burning more calories. “The sweat you produce should come simply from physical exertion,” Liza said, not from temperature.
A more gentle yoga class, such as Hatha, won’t burn as many calories. But it can benefit your mental health and decrease stress levels while helping you be more mindful, all of which have weight-loss benefits as well.
For the best weight-loss results, Liza recommended doing yoga three times a week. Continue to stay active and get your heart rate on the other three to four days as well, whether through cardio, weightlifting, or HIIT workouts of 45 minutes to an hour. (We recommend this dance workout for cardio, this Nike weightlifting workout, and this belly-targeting HIIT circuit, all 45 minutes in length.) And keep your nutrition in mind, too. “Exercise alone without dieting makes losing weight hard,” Jorianne said. “Weight loss occurs when you burn more calories than you consume.”
Carter said that no matter what diet you choose, whether it’s vegan, keto, or Paleo, “The ONLY WAY you’ll lose weight is through consistently being in a calorie deficit. For a ballpark daily calorie amount, he suggested multiplying your goal weight in pounds by 10 or 11. So if your goal is to be 150 pounds, you’d aim for 1,500 calories (if you’re sedentary) or 1,650 calories (if you’re somewhat active).
He noted that “if you have over 70 lbs to lose, or you’re already light, these calories might feel a bit low. If this is you, don’t be afraid to start with a higher calorie goal.” His method is a good place to start, but you can use this formula to get a more accurate number. This too is just a guideline, so in order to determine your exact calorie needs, speak with your doctor or a registered dietitian. If you’re not losing weight after a few weeks, and you’re accurately tracking your calories, adjust your calorie intake.
Protein is a key macronutrient to satiate your hunger and help you build and maintain calorie-burning muscle. Aim for 0.7 to 1 gram of protein per pound of goal body-weight. If your goal weight is 150 pounds, get between 105 and 150 grams of protein a day. Carter noted that if you are vegan or vegetarian, it may be easier to decrease that target number.
Carter said, “If roughly 80 percent of your diet is coming from nutritious foods, then it’s absolutely-positively okay to have ‘fun’ foods for the other 20 percent.” Make sure your diet is made up of healthy foods including lean protein, veggies, healthy fats and carbs, but also allow yourself some treat foods to satisfy your cravings and keep you on track.
There’s your simple plan. You can decide how you want to implement it, based on the foods you like and how many times you like to eat a day.