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7 Ways to Lose 7 Pounds in 7 Days

Torch stomach fat faster than the time it takes to binge-watch Gilmore Girls!

"I don't have enough time," is the oldest weight-loss excuse in the book, and it's exactly what my friend, Jenny, told me as we walked through the farmer's market last Sunday.

"Well, do you have enough time to eat?" I asked her.

"Yeah," she said.

"Then you're out of excuses!" I answered. You see, with the right guidance—and the right mindset—you can melt fat and speed up metabolism by simply tweaking certain habits. Make these seven changes to your daily routine on Sunday, and you'll be seven pounds thinner by Saturday! (That's great news for you: In one study, those who shed 15 percent of their body weight within the first 6 months of their diets are the least likely to regain the weight.) So start losing weight today—and make sure to always avoid these 50 Little Things Making You Fatter and Fatter.


Make a Meal Plan


Ever realize that trying to figure out what you're going to make for dinner that same night often results in grabbing a pizza or eating Goober Grape straight from the jar? Plan beforehand, and do a quick shop. Since home cooks consume an average of 140 calories less per meal, you'll be a whole pound lighter if you make a point of cooking each meal at home this week.

Eat This! Tip:

The most successful dieters utilize a meal-theme formula and simply rotate just a few go-to meals and snacks. Think: Meatless Monday can be both southwestern quinoa skillet and pasta primavera while Crockpot Saturday features a delicious pork carnitas and melt-in-your mouth pot roast (or any of these 35 Delicious One-Pot Slow Cooker Recipes).


Blend Your Breakfast


Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for a reason: A study published in Obesity Research & Clinical Practice showed that eating a morning meal helps dieters maintain more consistent blood glucose levels; hence, you'll have more stable energy levels throughout the day and won't have to whip those snarling hunger pangs into their place. While we know not everyone has a whole hour to whip up a breakfast buffet, that doesn't mean you have to miss out on a spread of hunger-busting, fat-fighting nutrients. Just grab a smoothie!

Eat This! Tip:

Our go to is the Ginger Man Smoothie from our best selling book, Zero Belly Smoothies. The frozen strawberries are teeming with vitamin C to help attack belly-fat-storing cortisol levels, freshly ground ginger's gingerol paired with banana's potassium will help debloat your belly, the omega-3s in ground flaxseed will fend off weight-inducing inflammation, and the plant-based protein powder will provide 29 grams of staying power to keep you full until lunch.


Prepare Meals & Snacks In Advance


Think about it: why do you really choose to grab that bag of Cheetos from the vending machine? Is it because you know they'll satisfy your hunger cravings? (They won't.) Or is it because you don't have anything else? We'd place our bets on the second one. Snacks are a great way to stoke your metabolism and feed your brain, but they'll only help if they're of the "healthy" variety. And guess what? Convenience is a huge factor here. In fact, it may be the only factor. When Northwestern University researchers replaced junk food with healthy options in Chicago park vending machines, not only did 88 percent of those surveyed report enjoying the snacks, but sales also increased by a staggering 340 percent! So make a point of reading up on these Meal Prep Sunday Tips, and get your food ready to grab on the go.

Eat This! Tip:

From purchasing fresh fruit to leave on your counter, to cutting up veggies to keep in your fridge, to even mixing up some instant oatmeal combos, the possibilities for fast food are endless!


Pregame Meals With a Salad


Leafy greens are both high in fiber and water volume while being low in calories, which can help you get a handle on your appetite. Not to mention, greens like kale, arugula, and watercress all contain a compound called sulforaphane. This micronutrient has been found to act directly on the genes that determine "adipocyte differentiation"—that means, they can divert a stem cell from turning into a fat cell. A healthier intake of the compound means a lower body weight for you.

Eat This! Tip:

Toss your salad up with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar The extra virgin olive oil will help your body absorb the good-for-you, fat-soluble nutrients while serving up a healthy dose of oleic acid (OEA): a type of fatty acid that can help reduce appetite and promote weight loss. ACV is made up of acetic acid, a type of nutrient which delays gastric emptying—meaning it keeps you fuller longer.


Establish a Bedtime Routine

Did you know most of us are getting 20 percent less sleep than our parents' generation? That's not a good thing. Sleep is essential for brain health, muscle recovery, and, you guessed it, weight loss. See, sleep allows our body to control levels of hunger hormones. Without enough of it, these hormones go haywire, and studies have found those who are sleep deprived tend to seek out more high-calorie options the next day. Luckily, your chances of getting a phenomenal night's sleep can be vastly improved by setting up a night time routine.

Eat This! Tip:

Have a cup of tea an hour before you're planning on hitting the hay, take a warm shower (the rapid decrease in temperature your body experiences post shower syncs up with your body's natural nighttime temp), shut off all the melatonin-disrupting blue lights emmitting from your devices, snack on one of these best foods to help you sleep, and then set off into dreamland!


Cut The Coke


…And alcohol, and frankencoffees you order every morning on your Starbucks app. Not only are these drinks just loading you up with empty calories, but their high levels of glucose are also contributing to increased levels of inflammation—a condition that has been connected with everything from obesity to acne.

Eat This! Tip:

If you're looking to ease off the bubbly easily, replace soda with seltzer. Try drinking your coffee black or with a splash of cream—or better yet, grab a cup of green tea. The magical weight-loss elixir is teeming with one of the essential nutrients for weight loss: EGCG. Epigallocatechin gallate has been found to block adipogenesis (the formation of fat cells), boost thermogenesis (the production of heat through burned calories), and enhance lipolysis (the breakdown of fat).


Lay Out Your Workout Gear


One of the two biggest reasons we struggle to stick to our workouts? Time and motivation. Tackle both with this flat-belly tip: plan out your workout clothes for the week and lay them out alongside what you're planning on wearing to work. This way, you won't have to drain through all that willpower and brainpower every morning trying to think up what to wear or even if you do a workout. And the best news of all? Your exercise time doesn't even have to be long. Squeezing in a quick, HIIT (high-intensity interval training) 15-minute morning workout has been shown by a study in the journal BMC Endocrine Disorders to improve insulin sensitivity—i.e. increasing your ability to break down fat while lowering your risk of diabetes—of overweight participants.

Eat This! Tip:

Exercise doesn't just help your body regulate glucose levels. Resistance training is also one of the best ways to build muscle mass. And since muscle burns more calories at rest than fat, you'll begin torching that adipose tissue in no time! You don't even need a gym: here are 31 Sneaky Ways to Work Out—Without Hitting The Gym.

Olivia Tarantino
Olivia Tarantino is the Managing Editor of Eat This, Not That!, specializing in nutrition, health, and food product coverage. Read more about Olivia