9 Ways to Lose Weight That Aren’t Just Diet and Exercise

Brittany Risher
by Brittany Risher
Share it:
9 Ways to Lose Weight That Aren’t Just Diet and Exercise

The formula for weight loss is, by now, probably burned into your brain: Exercise more often and eat a healthier diet. But there’s good news if that sounds old hat to you. Sleep, stress levels and even your plate size can affect your weight-loss efforts if you’re doing them the right way. Try these nine strategies to reach your goals faster.


When was the last time you had a meal and focused only on the food and the company? If you typically eat while working on a computer, answering texts, watching TV or even reading a book, it’s time to stop. British researchers reviewed 24 studies on distracted eating and found that not only do multitasking eaters consume more at their meals, they eat even more later on. “When you are eating, just eat,” says Mike Roussell, PhD, author of “The MetaShred Diet.” “This will help your body cognitively process the amount of food that you are eating, making you more satiated at the end of the meal.”


We all get by with a little help from our friends: “There’s nothing like the support of another person to help you reach your goals,” says Keri Gans, RDN, author of “The Small Change Diet.” “You are more likely to hit the gym if you know your friend is counting on you.” And you can also team up to healthy cook meals together, whether you’re cooking for one or the whole family.


Halving the size of your plate can help you eat 30% less food, according to research by Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab. The study authors say you naturally serve yourself less with a small plate or bowl.


Yes, sleep counts in the quest to drop pounds. “Research has shown that the less hours of sleep you get, the more likely you are to make poor food choices in the morning,” Gans says. “When you’re overly tired, those sugar-loaded breakfast options become more desirable.” It may also help to…


Or at least a sleep mask. Too much light in your bedroom may make it harder to lose weight, according to a 2014 study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Researchers looked at the sleep habits and weight of more than 113,000 women over nine years and discovered that women who slept in the darkest rooms were 21% less likely to be obese compared to those sleeping in the brightest rooms. They believe light inhibits the production of melatonin, a hormone that makes us sleepy.


> Your Quick & Easy Guide to Losing Weight in 2017
> Your 3-Minute Guide to Better Health & Nutrition in 2017
> The 5 Worst Things to Say to Someone Who Is Losing Weight
> What Is the Sleep-Weight Connection?


“Writing down everything you eat and the moods you are experiencing throughout the day can definitely be eye-opening,” says Gans. This will help you spot habits, which means you can then take action to change those habits, she explains. For example, you may notice that every time you feel anxious about work deadlines, you grab chips from the vending machine. Find a new habit — like taking a short walk, making a cup of tea or listening to a short meditation — and start doing that every time you’re drawn to those chips.


Stress has been linked to weight gain for years, and a new study suggests a stress-response protein is the culprit. University of Florida Health researchers found that mice under stress produced more of a protein called betatrophin. “Betatrophin reduces the body’s ability to break down fat, underscoring a link between chronic stress and weight gain,” wrote the study’s lead author, Dr. Li-Jun Yang. So do yoga, meditate, take walks outside — do whatever helps you chill when life has you ready to snap.


Water, that is. In a study in the Annals of Family Medicine, people with higher body mass indexes were more likely to be inadequately hydrated. The study authors say that, in addition to sipping H20, eating produce that is high in water such as watermelon, cucumber and zucchini can help you stay hydrated and curb cravings.


Yes, cooking takes time, but it’s worth it for your waistline. People who cook most of their meals at home eat fewer calories and carbs, and less sugar and fat than people who cook less — even if they’re not trying to lose weight, Johns Hopkins researchers reported. Those who cooked six or seven nights a week even ate less when they did go out to eat. If you feel lost in the kitchen, take a cooking class or ask a friend who likes to cook to let you be their sous chef for a few days.


> Men’s Workout Tops
> Women’s Workout Tops
> Men’s Workout Pants
> Women’s Workout Pants

About the Author

Brittany Risher
Brittany Risher

Brittany is a writer, editor and digital strategist specializing in health and lifestyle content. She loves experimenting with new vegan recipes and believes hummus is a food group. To stay sane from working too hard, she turns to yoga, strength training, meditation and scotch. Connect with her on TwitterInstagram, and Google+.


18 responses to “9 Ways to Lose Weight That Aren’t Just Diet and Exercise”

  1. Matt H says:

    6 of these 9 points ultimately relate to diet and the title is misleading; losing weight is purely due to diet and exercise that cause a calorie deficit.
    This should be called “9 tips on aiding weight loss”, or “Author wants to clickbait lazy people”.

    • Kimberley Bell says:

      I don’t know if it’s laziness or maybe just reached a little plateau and think it could give a person a little boost! But after reading don’t think it will help!

      • wendy.doty@mail.ru says:

        I got paid 104000 bucks in last twelve months by working from my home a­n­d I manage to accomplish that by wor­king part time for 3 or sometimes more hrs daily. I’m using work model I came across online and I am thrilled that i made such great money. It’s user friendly and I am just so thankful that i found this. Here is what i did… http://www­.­wzurl­.­me/qRID1Q

      • christine.mccroy says:

        I was paid 104000 bucks past 12 months by doing an on-line job and consequently I was able to do it by w­orking in my own time f­o­r quite a few hours on a regular basis. I utilized work opportunity I found on the net and also I am thrilled that I was succeed to earn such decent earnings. It is really newbie-friendly and I am so pleased that I found out about it. Look into exactly what I do… http://nubr­.­co/QUp3qK

      • Phil Bowman says:

        so what is the downside of this

    • Susan says:

      Agreed. It always comes back to calories. The less you take in and the more you burn, the more you lose. The suggestions may be helpful to some. I don’t think the author wants to “click bait lazy people”, it’s just some helpful tips.

    • Anonymous says:

      While your view is somewhat accurate, losing weight isn’t just about diet and exercise, it’s also about leading a healthy life style, which the author includes in her article.

  2. Kimberley Bell says:

    Yeah, the sleep thing! I just started exercising 5 weeks ago, but I need to get up an hour earlier to do so. So now I’m up at 0400. I always used the excuse not enough hours in the day so in order to incorporate exercise into my schedule have to sacrifice the zzz!

    • Phil Bowman says:

      don’t stop for overpriced coffee in the morning and stop yapping mindlessly on the phone. instantly time is saved and something is gained.

  3. AstraHealth says:

    Nice One. I would surely follow these tips

  4. Greg Dahlen says:

    One thing that probably helps with weight loss is going to church. For instance, I go to daily Mass, and a person is supposed to fast one hour before going to Mass. I find this hour of fasting sets a tone for eating less during the day. I notice there aren’t many overweight people at church. Or at least not too overweight.

  5. Only two of these things were unrelated to diet and exercise (stress management and sleep).

  6. Komrad says:

    I’d love to get blackout curtains for my apartment. Who sells custom ones that will fit your windows?

  7. Crook says:

    Nice article, looking forward for more,Have you been looking for ways to lose weight fast with no success then you need to check out this awesome weight loss formula!

    • Christine Lehman says:

      Or you could actually read the article, where you’d see that it contains no “awesome weight loss formula” whatsoever.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Never Miss a Post!

Turn on MyFitnessPal desktop notifications and stay up to date on the latest health and fitness advice.


Click the 'Allow' Button Above


You're all set.