Is It Better to Lose Weight by Diet or Exercise?

Medically Reviewed on 5/5/2022
Is It Better to Lose Weight by Diet or Exercise
When it comes to losing weight, diet and exercise are both extremely important. But is one more important than the other? Learn about the best approach to weight loss

When it comes to losing weight, diet and exercise are both extremely important. But is one more important than the other?

With all the varying opinions out there—from the 80/20 rule to diets that disregard exercises—it can be difficult to figure out whether it is better to lose weight by diet or exercise, or both.

The truth is, in order to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume. So no matter how much you exercise, you will not lose weight if you are eating more calories that you expend each day. This is why the best approach to weight loss is to find the right balance between nutrition and exercise.

What are the benefits of diet for weight loss?

Making dietary changes can help you not only lose weight but also improve your energy levels and overall health.

Instead of trying to find a quick fix, focus on making food choices that promote sustainable, gradual weight loss and keep you feeling fueled. A safe rate of weight loss is about 1-2 pounds a week.

In order to build a diet plan that is best suited for your lifestyle and preferences, talk to a registered dietitian. General diet tips for weight loss include the following:

  • Eat protein and fat: An easy way to manage your calorie intake is to focus on eating whole foods that are low in calories and high in protein and healthy fats.
  • Consume more fiber: You can also focus on eating more fiber. Fiber keeps you feeling full for longer, meaning it can help you eat less throughout the day.
  • Stay well hydrated: Staying hydrated helps you stay satiated and promotes the removal of waste products from your body. Substitute sodas with water and sugar-free drinks.
  • Eat frequent meals: Eat frequent, small meals throughout the day to make sure that you are fueling your body with a variety of healthy foods. Avoid skipping meals, since this can lead to cravings and overeating.

What are the benefits of exercise for weight loss?

While diet alone may help you lose some weight, incorporating regular exercise is crucial for effective weight loss because it boosts your metabolism and builds muscles, both of which can help you burn more calories.

Excerpts recommend getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity each week. In addition to helping you shed extra pounds, the benefits of regular exercise include the following:

  • Improved strength and endurance
  • Better sleep quality
  • Increased brain function
  • Improved sex drive
  • Improved mood


Weight loss occurs in the belly before anywhere else. See Answer

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Medically Reviewed on 5/5/2022
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