We all know that weight loss for women can be difficult for several reasons. Pregnancy and childbirth changes our body composition and skin elasticity, which can make weight loss extra difficult. Hormone imbalances also cause weight gain, especially in the abdomen. Estrogen levels fluctuate as we age, causing water retention, bloating, decreased metabolism, and increased fat deposits. More body fat, yep! Women have 6 to 11 percent more body fat on average as well as less muscle mass than the average male. For this reason alone fat loss can be very difficult for us.

Ironically, while women are the principal buyers of weight loss products and services, few diets are tailored to our unique needs. After all, the majority of diets and programs don’t explicitly address hormonal imbalances or body composition. But the good news, is that certain diet options do offer benefits that can help women in very specific ways: such as boosting fat loss, metabolism, and balancing hormones. So, look no further, we’re revealing the top 5 weight loss diet plans for women:

1. A High-Fat diet. If this sounds counter-intuitive, it might be because we’ve all been made to believe that all fats are the enemy. However, recent studies show that not all fats are created equal and in fact, a diet rich in healthy fats might be critical for lowering BMI. Here’s a quick list of healthy fats: monounsaturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, omega-3’s fatty acids, medium chain triglycerides and yes in some cases, saturated fat.

A diet rich in olive oil, avocados, wild caught salon, nuts and seeds, and flaxseeds offers plenty of healthy fats to not only keep you feeling satiated and full while eating fewer calories, but they also trigger the body to burn fat for fuel rather than glucose, which results in greater fat loss. Healthy fats have also been shown to improve brain cognition, reduce waist size, slow the signs of aging, and lower your risk for heart disease which are all important areas of concern for women in particular.

2. A High-Protein diet. No, you don’t have to be a bodybuilder or power weightlifter to up your protein and see great results. A high-protein diet is one of the best weight loss diet plans for women because it goes a long way towards keeping you full and satisfied, and also helps build the lean body mass needed to burn extra calories and fight off muscle loss as we age. Getting the right protein sources is important, so be sure to include plenty of fresh meat such as wild caught fish, organic sources of meat and dairy, eggs, and plenty of nuts and seeds.

Since most people get their daily calcium from dairy products, going for unsweetened dairy can ensure you’re getting much needed calcium since many women suffer from calcium deficiency, which leads to osteoporosis and other bone density issues. Additionally, anemia is also common among women due to blood loss during monthly menstruation and a range of other factors. A diet high in protein sources such as liver, can boost your iron levels if you suffer from anemia and low-energy.

Here’s a tip: Be sure to avoid processed meats such as those found in the deli or most that are found in packaging, as preservatives and extra sodium has been added which can cause water retention, high blood pressure, and a host of other medical conditions that are known to impact women. Limit your fast food intake as well.

3. A Low-Carb diet. Low-carb, keto, carb cycling, the Atkins diet, it goes by many names but lowering your refined carbohydrate and sugar intake is one of the best options for women looking to lose weight fast and balance their hormones. While fats have received most of the blame, refined or processed (sometimes called white) carbohydrates are one of the biggest culprits of weight gain. Some examples are: white bread, white rice, white flour pasta. Removing excess bread, waffles, crackers, sweeteners, pastries, and other refined carbs can help to balance blood sugar, regulate insulin, and allow the body to burn its fat reserves rather than glucose.

Keep in mind, that the key here is not to avoid all carbs, but to instead swap out the bad ones for those that are high in fiber and are slow to raise blood sugar. If you aren’t sure where to start, checking your groceries against the Glycemic Index is a great place to begin.

4. A High-Fiber diet. Getting enough fiber in your diet is absolutely critical when it comes to maintaining a healthy weight, regulating metabolism, and supporting anti-aging. It is also a powerhouse move when it comes to lowering cholesterol levels and promoting healthy blood sugar levels. Heart disease is quickly becoming one of the leading causes of death for women in the U.S., so a diet rich in whole grains, brown rice, quinoa, nuts, seeds, oats, colorful vegetables, bran, beans and lentils, and fruits can reduce your weight and increase your longevity.

Tip: According to federal recommendations, women should aim for 25 g of fiber in their diets per day to maintain optimal health.

5. Medically-Supervised Weight Loss. Let’s face it, if losing weight was just about what we eat, dieting would be simpler all around. But the truth is, it’s much more complicated than that, especially for us women. How we eat and what we eat is often determined by a complex set of hormonal factors, environmental factors, economic factors, learned behaviors, level of food education and yes, mental wellness factors as well. Sometimes, getting down to the root causes of weight gain are more important than what we put on our plate.

This is precisely why Diet Doc has created a comprehensive strategy, made to help with quick fat loss results for women. By taking an assessment of your unique body macros and getting a feel for your lifestyle, past weight loss challenges, and behaviors, our certified weight loss doctors come up with a customized plan to suit your needs. As women, understanding how our hormones affect weight gain or how our emotions affect eating habits is critical to our success. Only Diet Doc gives you your very own personal weight loss coach for on-demand assistance along with powerful prescriptions to curb your appetite, balance your hormones and mood, kill cravings, accelerate your metabolism, boost fat loss and more. The best part about it, you never have to visit a doctor’s office! All consultations and prescriptions are administered by phone for women on the go!