You’ve tried the Cabbage Soup diet, the Master Cleanse, and the Hollywood diet. You’ve cut calories with the HCG diet and cut carbs with the South Beach Diet.
Yet no matter how many weeks you spend carefully constructing your shopping list and counting your calories, the results are always the same: you lose a pound or two only to gain it all back and then some.
Isn’t it about time you listened to your gut (rather than the infomercials) and acknowledge that fad diets just don’t work?
“What good is losing weight only to regain it?” asks Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD. “To keep pounds off permanently, it’s best to lose weight slowly.”
These tips and tricks might not give you the immediate satisfaction of losing 10 pounds in 1 week, but they’re the perfect way to lose weight fast without dieting. No more gimmicks. No more gags. Just pure and simple weight loss through healthy living.
Breakfast: The Most Important Meal of the Day
Not to sound like a broken record, but breakfast really is the most important meal of the day.
“People skip breakfast thinking they’re cutting calories,” explains Milton Stokes, RD, “but by mid-morning and lunch, that person is starved. Breakfast skippers replace calories during the day with mindless nibbling, bingeing at lunch and dinner. They set themselves up for failure.”
In a long-term study conducted by the University of Colorado Health Sciences, researchers observed over 2900 subjects in the National Weight Control Registry. Of the individuals who had lost an average of 30 pounds and managed to keep it off for 6 years, 78% reported regularly eating breakfast every day of the week.
“Breakfast eaters reported slightly more physical activity than non-breakfast eaters,” researchers concluded. “Eating breakfast is a characteristic common to successful weight loss maintainers and may be a factor in their success.” 
No time for breakfast? Prepare a batch of hardboiled eggs you can eat throughout the week. Eggs provide a great source of protein and are easy for on-the-go meals.
Power Up with Protein
Whether you’re a hardcore vegetarian or a diehard fan of chicken and coldcuts, protein is an essential part to any diet.
“High-protein foods take more work to digest, metabolize, and use,” explains Selene Yeager, health writer. “You burn more calories processing them.”
Experts at WebMD explain, “Diets higher in protein and moderate in carbs — along with regular exercise — are often thought by experts to reduce blood fats. It also helps maintain lean tissue while burning fat for fuel. And this happens without dieters being sidetracked with constant hunger.”
A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition studied the effects of high-protein diets. The diet consisted of 20% fats, 30% protein, and 50% carbs. By the end of the study, participants reported they were more satisfied, less hungry, and lost weight. 
The Recommended Dietary Allowance for protein is 46 grams daily for women and 56 grams daily for men, although depending on your goals, you may need more.
Struggling to Get Enough? Although most people get plenty of protein, a protein powder or supplement may help fill in any gaps in your nutrition. Just watch out for calories! Though high-protein diets can promote weight loss, they can’t compensate for a diet high in calories.
Quench Your Thirst
When you find yourself searching for a snack, down a glass of water instead.
“When you start to hydrate by drinking enough water, then your appetite goes down because you’re actually fulfilling what your body needs,” explains Dr. Cousens, renowned nutritionist.
In a 2008 study published by the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, older adults who drank two cups of water 30 minutes before breakfast ate 75 fewer calories than a comparable group who did not. 
Watch Out for Liquid Calories! Drinking water is the zero-calorie way to quench your thirst, but coffee, teas, sodas, and even fruit juices can start packing on the pounds without satisfying your appetite. (Though coffee and tea may be initially low in calories, adding creams, syrups, and sugars to your drink pile on more calories than you think!)
Ayala Laufer, MD points out, “Our body has a hard time registering calories from beverages in the tally towards satiety . . . Unfortunately, these beverages’ calories still count in our energy balance.”
Studies have shown that women who received caloric beverages consumed nearly 100 calories more than those who chose water without affecting satiety ratings. 
Fill Up On Fiber
One of the biggest obstacles with trimming those extra pounds is trimming extra calories. The moment you start cutting snacks and sweets is the moment your stomach starts to rumble.
However, you can slim down without feeling starved or deprived by filling up on fiber-rich foods. “Dietary Fiber is not a magic weight loss weapon, “explains Kathleen Zelman, MPH, “but it has the power to help fill you up without filling you out.”
Fiber, or roughage, is the indigestible part of plant foods that pushes through our digestive system. As it works its way out, it absorbs water and attracts toxins and other waste materials.
Some fibers, such as glucomannan, create a gel-like substance that puts pressure on the stomach walls and tricks your brain into feeling fuller for longer periods of time.
According to Barbara Rolls, PHD and author of The Volumetrics Eating Plan, most people eat about the same weight of food each day. If you choose foods high in fiber, you can eat the same weight of food but feel full on fewer calories.
According to researchers at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center, “studies indicate that an increase in either soluble or insoluble fiber intake increases postmeal satiety and decreases subsequent hunger.” Furthermore, “efforts to increase dietary fiber in individuals consuming 25 g/day may help to decrease the currently high national prevalence of obesity.” 
Persistence Pays Off
These are just four techniques that can contribute to weight loss without dieting. However, the most important weight loss tip you’ll ever learn is to focus on healthy lifestyle decisions rather than quick-fix solutions.
“Most people who truly focus on eating well and exercising will find that the weight eventually takes care of itself,” explains Dr. Katz.
The longer you follow healthy habits, the easier it will be to lose weight and keep it off.
-  Wyatt, HR et al. “Long-term weight loss and breakfast in subjects in the National Weight Control Registry.” Obesity Research. 2002 Feb;10(2):78-82.
-  American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2005; vol 82: pp 41-488.
-  Davy BM et al. “Water consumption reduces energy intake at a breakfast meal in obese older adults.” Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 2008 Jul;108(7):1236-9.
-  Rolls, BJ et al. “Does the consumption of caloric and non-caloric beverages with a meal affect energy intake?” Appetite. 2005 Apr;44(2):187-93.
-  Howarth NC, Saltzman E, Roberts SB “Dietary Fiber and Weight Regulation.” Nutrition Reviews. 2001 May;59(5):129-39.