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Fat Loss Tips for Females

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Fat loss can be tough.

Planning your diet, structuring your workouts and optimizing your lifestyle to match your targets can be time consuming and stressful. But with the right tools you can make the journey so much easier.

As a female you might be frustrated that there’s not much advice out there that takes the specific things that make you a woman into account… and the advice that is out there always relates to off-the-shelf cardio and boring body weight circuits.

You know you don’t want to wrap yourself up in cotton wool and you’re ready to work hard for the body you deserve. And now it’s time to do so.

Here are our tips for female fat loss…

#1. Know Your Metabolic Blueprint

Many coaches, trainers and nutritionists see men and women as being the same.

But when it comes to your your metabolism there are differences between men and women that could drastically affect the way in which you plan your calorie intake.

The average female holds around 30% muscle on their frame. That’s much lower than the 40% you’ll find in males [1]. This is important as muscle tissue can greatly affect your resting metabolism rate – or what’s called your basal metabolic rate (BMR).

  • Your basal metabolic rate accounts for about 60-70% of the overall calories you burn off each day. The more muscle you have, the higher your energy expenditure is.

All in all that means that as a woman your metabolism is as much as 10% lower [2] than your male counterpart – a big difference when it comes to planning your daily diet.

Instant Knockout Tip:

  • When you calculate your calories you need to use a calculator that factors in not only your weight and height but your gender too. If you don’t, the chances are you’ll overeat and find it much harder to reign in your overall calorie count.

You’ll find a calorie calculator at the bottom of this article if you need access to a scientific method of working out your energy needs.

Man and woman in active wear in the gym

#2. Females Are More Likely to Overeat

Not only is your metabolic physiology different to a man’s, your emotional relationship with food might be too.

And whilst there are always exceptions to the rule and this is by no means set in stone, women do tend to show a stronger psychological link to emotional eating.

Research shows that a number of things can trigger comfort food binges in women – anxiety, stress, tension, depression, worry and tiredness can all lead to snacking on high-sugar and high-fat foods [3].

And if strong habits and routines are formed around these characteristics, it’ll not be long before your overall weekly calorie count is on the rise.

Studies show that in emotional eaters, body mass is typically higher than in those who don’t eat because of emotional triggers [4].

Instant Knockout Tips:

  • Learn about the triggers that cause emotional eating and plan strategies in advance to overcome them.
  • Aim to put control measures in place and feed your feelings in other ways such as mindfulness activities, meditation, exercise or rewarding yourself with things that are unrelated to food.

Young woman frustrated looking in the fridge at night for something to eat

#3. Your Hormones Can Affect Fat Loss

The bottom line is that calories matter when it comes to fat loss. Without an energy deficit you just won’t trigger changes to your body that push you towards you goal.

But that doesn’t mean that hormones don’t play a part too.

Women typically have wide hips and store body fat around the butt, breasts and thighs. You’ve got a narrower waist and a more hourglass figure, even if it is hidden under a little excess fat.

This is different to men of course, who tend to store excess fat around their chest, belly and love handles when they put an extra few pounds on.

The reason why we there are differences in where fat is stored is down to hormones – particularly estrogen levels.

Estrogen is the hormone that helps stimulate and control your menstrual cycle, but it is also a fat regulating hormone too.

This is due to the fact that estrogen up-regulates specialized cellscalled alpha-adrenergic receptors that function to help you store more fat. And it’s no surprise that females have higher levels of alpha-adrenergic receptors in their hips and thighs.

Some studies suggest that this is because during reproductive age, estrogen is important for both triggering ovulation and regulating other hormones involved in reproduction.

Instant Knockout Tips:

  • Implementing regular strength training into your exercise sessions helps to elevate testosterone levels which can control excess estrogen and lead to fat loss.
  • Regular strength training also increases your metabolic rate, insulin sensitivity and muscle to fat ratio so it’s an all-round goof activity for female fat loss.
  • Eat plenty of cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli and consider using a green tea supplement.

Muscular female athlete leaning on  dumbbell rack in the gym

#4. Optimize Your Diet

Women are much more likely to diet severely.

Research shows that when it comes to crash diets and strange eating habits, you’re much more likely to have struggled with a diet in the past if you’re female.

And whilst it’s a bit of a myth that your metabolism ‘slows down’, low calorie, crash diets can leave you feeling tired, lethargic and worn out as your body down-regulates everything it can to stop you using up the little energy it has to spare.

Once you’ve calculated your healthy calorie count it’s time to think about which nutrients to focus on to speed up your results.

Instant Knockout Tips:

  • Making sure your diet is rich in vitamins and minerals from fiber-rich carbs, fruits and vegetables is key to helping you manage your calorie intake and protein foods will help you build muscle to increase your metabolic rate.
  • Nutrients such as cayenne pepper boost your metabolism and the rate at which you oxidize fat by increasing thermogenesis. Numerous studies have found that adding spicy pepper to your meals speeds up fat loss.
  • Nutrients such as zinc, chromium and B vitamins help to support weight loss by regulating energy levels, improving insulin sensitivity and help digestion too.
  • Drinking plenty of water throughout the day has also been shown to reduce appetite and food cravings, whilst water can directly raise your metabolism too.


Taking into account the physiology and hormonal differences that make you a woman are key to successful fat loss.

Follow these tips and you’ll not only avoid the set backs that make changes to your body composition harder, you’ll accelerate your progress and find a happy, healthy weight much quicker.

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  1. Jansen, I et al. Skeletal muscle mass and distribution in 468 men and women aged 18-88 yr. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2000; 89(1): 81-8
  2. Ferraro, R et al. Lower sedentary metabolic rate in women compared with men. J Clin Invest. 1992; 90(3): 780–784
  3. Nguyen-Rodriguez, ST et al. Psychological Determinants of Emotional Eating in Adolescence. Eat Disord. 2009; 17(3): 211–224
  4. Diggins, A et al. The association of perceived stress, contextualized stress, and emotional eating with body mass index in college-aged Black women. Eat Behav. 2015; 19: 188-92