weight loss concept

how much weight can you realistically lose in 12 months


How much weight can you realistically lose in 12 months?

On average, expect to lose 48 – 96 pounds in 12 months. It is a safe amount to lose in 12 months. It’s also in line with what most experts such as the CDC (center for disease control and prevention) recommend for healthy weight loss.


With a daily calorie deficit of 500, expect to lose 48 pounds in 12 months. Double it to a daily calorie deficit of 1000 to lose 96 pounds in 12 months.


While it is possible to lose more weight in 12 months, it is not recommended. Losing weight at the recommended rate is good for your health. Also, it increases the likelihood of keeping the weight off long-term as you have enough time to incorporate the changes to your lifestyle.

weight loss concept

Safe and healthy weight loss

Weight loss occurs when you eat fewer calories than the body needs. It results in a calorie deficit that forces the body to tap into stored fat. It takes a calorie deficit of 3,500 to lose a pound of fat.


Most experts recommend losing 1 – 2 pounds weekly. You can achieve this is by eating less and exercising more.


We know that most adults need to eat at least 2000 – 2500 calories to maintain their current weight. However, to lose weight in 12 months, you have to eat less. Most experts recommend a moderate calorie reduction of at least 500. It is enough to jumpstart weight loss without leaving you feeling deprived.


Make small changes such as cutting out junk food and other empty calories. These include foods such as; cookies, cakes, pastries, fried foods, sugary drinks, ultra-processed snacks, and alcohol. These foods are bad for weight loss as they increase your appetite. Also, they’re high in added sugar and other additives that increase your calories with little nutritional benefit. Eliminate these from your diet to lose weight in 12 months.


You can also consider portion control to help you eat less. Use simple tips such as serving your food on smaller plates or bowls. Or better yet, use your plate as a guide. Fill half your plate with vegetables before adding protein or carbs.

meal prep

Change your diet

Focus on eating nutrient-dense foods to make up for the reduced calories. Ensure all your meals are full of vegetables, protein, fiber, and complex carbs. These foods are great for weight loss as they keep you full for longer.


Start your day with protein-rich eggs instead of a sugar-filled bowl of breakfast cereal. Choose lean meat, poultry, or fish for protein instead of processed deli meats.


High-fiber foods such as; peas, beans, and lentils are just as filling. Enjoy them for lunch or dinner. Also, they’re cheaper and a great alternative for those who want to eat healthy on a budget. Vegetables such as; kale, spinach, broccoli, or Brussel sprouts are a must-have. They add volume to your meals and improve satiety.


Choose filling snacks such as; greek yogurt, jerky, edamame, or hard-boiled eggs. These will keep you full for longer instead of ultra-processed dry snacks with no nutritional benefit.

woman exercising

Exercise to lose weight

Exercising helps you burn extra calories to lose weight in 12 months. It is recommended that healthy adults spend at least 250 minutes exercising weekly.


Alternate between cardio and weight training exercise for best results. Cardio exercises such as; swimming, running, rowing burn calories fast. If you hate cardio, consider weight training exercises such as; planks, deadlifts, or squats to build lean muscle and boost your metabolism.


Focus on workouts you enjoy doing to loe weight in 12 months. You’re more likely to be consistent this way. If you struggle with a busy schedule, consider high-intensity interval training. HIIT workouts take less than 45-minutes to complete and are just as effective at burning calories.


How much weight can you realistically lose in 12 months? Conclusion

Generally, expect to lose 48 – 96 pounds in 12 months. It is a safe and healthy amount to lose in 12 months for most people.