Plus more unconventional ways to cut unwanted calories from your diet

By Ea Francisco

Exercise isn’t the only way we can lose calories. Sometimes, those few seemingly insignificant things we do can actually help us lose even more calories. They might not be the key to your weight loss journey, but a little help goes a long way.

Chewing Gum

What if I told you that chewing gum isn’t just for fresh breaths but an actual, legitimate way to help you lose calories? Apparently, it curbs hunger and makes you consume less calories according to a 2016 study. If you mindlessly eat when stressed, then a better alternative is to chew on sugar-free gum. A research by the University of Rhode Island showed that people who chewed gum had less food cravings, burned five percent more, and consumed 68 calories less without having to compensate by eating more later.

Drinking Cold Water

We all know that hydrating enough is good for you, but it also temporarily boosts your metabolism. When exposed to the cold, the body spends energy trying to remain warm, which in turn causes it to burn calories. A study found that just a glass of 16 ounce ice-cold water can increase calorie burning by 30 percent for an hour and a half. Though probably not a lot in the long run, it’s something to consider if you want to up your metabolism for a short while


The key to burning calories is to constant movement, and it doesn’t even matter if those actions are as small as fidgeting. Surprisingly enough, continuous fidgeting throughout the day can help you lose at least 350 calories a day. Those little things like feet tapping, leg shaking, or finger drumming when done often enough can help you burn 10 times as much calories as a non-fidgeter says The Guardian. This phenomenon is called non-exercise activity thermogenesis or NEAT, and this is the energy we spend when we’re not consciously exercising, eating, or sleeping. Studies even say that NEAT can help explain individual weight gain, weight loss, and weight maintenance.

Donating Blood

Note that we are most definitely not saying you should donate blood for weight loss. It does, however, increase calorie burn temporarily. Researchers at the University of California San Diego found that the act of drawing blood alone makes you lose roughly 650 calories. Your body works extra hard after donating to make sure it replaces all the lost blood within the next two days. This can help speed up calorie burn but only for a short while. It’s obviously not a sustainable weight loss method since you can only donate once every two months, but it might encourage you to donate blood every once in a while.

While all these might seem like cool ways to lose calories, they are in no way a reliable way to lose weight. It’s still better to make a conscious effort in maintaining a healthy diet and proper exercise.