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5 Best Ways to Lose Weight in 2 Weeks After 50

Here’s how to kickstart an effective weight loss program after age 50.
FACT CHECKED BY Christopher Roback

Losing weight after 50 can be challenging, but it's certainly not impossible. "Not all people over 50 will experience the same degree of difficulty with weight loss as genes determine 40 to 70 percent of what your weight is at a given time," Holly Lofton, MD, director of the NYU Langone Medical Weight Management Program in New York City, tells AARP. Here's how to kickstart an effective over-50 weight loss program in just two weeks.

Lift Weights

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Lifting weights helps burn fat even when you're not exercising. "Muscle is more metabolically active — it burns more calories than fat," William Yancy Jr., MD, director of the Duke Lifestyle and Weight Management Center in Durham, North Carolina, tells AARP. "So having a higher ratio of muscle to fat will mean you burn more energy — just while sitting. To build that muscle, you have to exercise, and that burns calories, too."​

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Be Mindful of Drinking

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Alcohol can be kryptonite to any weight-loss regimen—but lowering intake or abstaining completely can help accelerate weight loss. "Across the board, for people who are trying to lose some weight, cutting out empty calories is a good place to start," Leslie Heinberg, PhD, tells the Cleveland Clinic. "Oftentimes, beverages are a big source of empty calories — whether it's soda, juice, sweet tea, beer, wine or cocktails. Any of those things add calories, but really without nutrition and without the sense of feeling full."

Calories Count

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Calories count, so make an effort to track how much you are consuming. "First, multiply your current weight by 15 — that's roughly the number of calories per pound of body weight needed to maintain your current weight if you are moderately active," say the experts at Harvard Health. "For example, to lose 1 to 2 pounds a week — a rate that experts consider safe — your food consumption should provide 500 to 1,000 calories less than your total weight-maintenance calories." Don't go too far, though: women should eat at least 1,200 calories a day, and men should eat at least 1,500.

Ditch the Sugar

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Want to lose weight quickly? Ditch the added sugars, experts warn. Not all foods containing sugars are the same," dietitian Victoria Taylor tells the British Heart Foundation. "Fruit or dairy products contain natural sugars but are nutritious foods that contain vitamins, minerals and in some cases fiber. What we need to cut down on are free sugars, which include added sugars, syrups, or juices. It's recommended that we eat less than 30g (1 oz) of free sugars each day, but most of us are eating more than this."

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Aerobic Exercise and Active Hobbies

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Getting your heart rate going is a great way to accelerate fat loss. "For most healthy adults, experts recommend moderate aerobic activity," says the Mayo Clinic. "This includes brisk walking for at least 150 to 200 minutes a week or vigorous aerobic activity, such as jogging, for at least 75 minutes a week. Find time to take care of yourself. Activities that you enjoy doing can help you get exercise. This can include gardening, yoga or other active hobbies."

💪🔥Body Booster: Cut out empty liquid calories from sugary drinks, alcohol, and juices. Prioritize water and low-calorie beverages for weight loss.

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more