Look At The Quality Of Your Sleep
Dont underestimate the power of a good nights sleep, too. Yes, it can help combat under-eye bags but, according to the University of Leeds, adults who get more than six hours of sleep per night are likely to carry 3cm less around their waist.
Head to bed earlier and follow the WHhow to get to sleep guide to ensure a lack of shut-eye doesnt hold you back from losing belly fat.
What Foods Can Help Reduce Belly Fat
Foods that suppress your hunger and give you a sense of satiety are important when it comes to weight loss, and dietary fiber is one of these foods. A study in the Journal of Nutrition indicated that participants who consumed enough fiber found it easier to adhere to their other macronutrient goals over the six-month study. Fiber is another food that can help us feel satisfied, as it has a bulking effect and lingers in the digestive system where it is broken down by our gut bacteria, as our bodies cant digest it themselves. This means we feel fuller for longer.
Hobson reiterates that targeted fat loss doesnt work, so you need to work on overall fat loss to see results. You cant target fat loss by body area so the same rule applies to anyone else trying to lose weight, he says. A diet rich in plant foods that are high in fiber, including fruits such as apples and pears, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, helps to fill you up and bulk out meals. Protein is also important for satiety so stick to lean proteins such as poultry, tofu or fish. Healthy fats are important to help reduce inflammation in the body as well as keep you feeling full between meals. These fats include avocado, olive oil, oily fish nuts, and seeds.
Get At Least 7 Hours Of Sleep Each Night
If you’re among the 30% of Americans who sleep less than six hours a night, here’s one simple way to reduce your waistline: catch more Zs. A 16-year study of almost 70,000 women found that those who slept five hours or less a night were 30% more likely to gain 30 or more pounds than those who slept 7 hours. The National Institutes of Health suggest adults sleep seven to eight hours a night.
A smaller study also found that those who slept 4.5 hours a night had higher levels of the brain chemicals that affect appetite and our reward systems, compared to those who slept 8.5 hours. That means they ate more food between meals and were drawn to junk options.
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Youre Eating Too Much
If you’ve already cleaned up your diet big time and you’re still not losing weight, it may be that you’re simply eating too much. In order to shed pounds your body needs to run a calorie deficit, meaning you need to burn more than you consume. That being said, you shouldn’t have to deprive yourself either. Life is about balance. Don’t become consumed with counting calories or weighing yourself every day.
Eat whenever you’re hungry and eat slowly enough so you can stop just before you get full. And don’t be afraid to give yourself “healthy” cheats. The moment you start depriving yourself is when you start to feel like you’re missing out on something and you want to binge.
Tip: Healthy snacking during the day will keep you from overeating during meals. I always carry a few Kind Bars in my bag because they’re a great snack made with whole foods and have nothing artificial.
You Consume Too Much Sugar
Have you ever considered your sugar intake?
You might not eat sweets, cake or chocolate but there are hidden sugars everywhere.
Sugar is the bellys number one enemy and where most of it ends up. Think about what saturated fat and white refined food you eat.
Things like white bread, rice, potatoes and pasta are all causes of belly fat.
They metabolize really quickly and that makes your blood sugar spike, leading to excess fat.
Instead of sugary foods and saturated fats, try more lean meat , lots of vegetables and fruit .
Avoid saturated fat and eat monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats which youll find in avocados, nuts, seeds and oily fish.
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You’re Not Working Hard Enough
There’s no exact equation to working out and eating healthyit’s a matter of trial and error, finding out what works specifically for your body. And more time spent in the gym doesn’t always equal a more fit person. Unless you’re an athlete, body builder, or a marathoner-in-training, the average person shouldn’t be working out more than an hour a day.
Your workouts should be intensity-dependent, not time-dependent. Keep this fact in mind: the harder you work, the shorter your workout time may need to be.
Tip: Maximize time spent at the gym, in fitness class, or in your at-home workout routine so you can achieve that coveted afterburn effect, which keeps your metabolism revved for 24-48 hours afterward.
Youre Not Sleeping Well
Good sleep is one of the most important factors for your physical and mental health as well as your weight.
Studies show that poor sleep is one of the single biggest risk factors for obesity. Adults and children with poor sleep have a 55% and 89% greater risk, respectively, for developing obesity .
Lack of quality sleep is a strong risk factor for obesity. It could also hinder weight loss progress.
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Do You Have To Cut Out Your Favorite Foods To Lose Belly Fat
At Fit& Well, we are all about sustainable weight loss. We believe that a gradual approach is more effective and that cutting out all your favorite foods is likely to leave you feeling miserable and unmotivated. As such, we recommend you keep eating your favorite foods, just mindfully and in moderation. All foods can fit within a calorie deficit, and going over your calorie allowance every so often will not undo your progress.
Ruth Stone, a personal trainer for Sweat Band explains further: Studies have found that people that completely remove all indulgence from their diet are actually less likely to lose weight, as this often leads to relapses and binge eating. It is also not psychologically healthy to start viewing food through a prism of good and bad.
There is no intrinsically bad food, there’s simply food that has less nutritional and higher calorific value. Eating a balanced diet, and simply being more aware of what you are eating will enable you to craft a perfect eating plan that will not only help you lose weight but will mean you dont have to skip on the occasional office cupcake.
Instead, she recommends, “Finding healthier alternatives to your favorite foods – not giving them up entirely- seems like a sensible, sustainable approach. Think of a handful of toasted seeds and nuts, lightly seasoned, instead of the usual bag of crisps. Swapping your afternoon biscuit for a small serving of fruit with nut butter can still offer you sweet satisfaction.
You’re Addicted To Sugary Drinks
These days, drinking a can of colawhether it’s diet or regularis a bit taboo. Even so, if you love sipping the stuff, it’s a hard habit to shakeand one that can leave your once-toned stomach covered in fat. Regular soda and fructose-filled juice have been associated with increased waist size and abdominal fat while diet soda has been shown to increased waist size, BMI, and total percentage of body fat, according to a study published in the journal Obesity.
If you can’t possibly down another glass of H20, sip white tea instead of reaching for a sugary drink or diet cola. This mild brew blocks the formation of new fat cells and helps the body break down stored fat, according to a Nutrition and Metabolism study.
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Youre Eating Too Much Dairy
Dairy is a low carb food that can cause problems for some people.
Dairy products are often high in protein. Protein, like carbs, can raise insulin levels, which encourages your body to store energy.
The amino acid composition of dairy protein makes it very good at spiking insulin. In fact, dairy proteins can spike insulin as much as white bread (
Its important to do the right kind of exercise.
A mixture of cardio and muscle building can be an effective combination:
- Weightlifting. Lifting weights can greatly improve hormone levels and increase muscle mass, which may help you lose fat and keep it off over the long term if you maintain your exercise regime.
- Interval training. High intensity intervals is an excellent form of cardio that boosts your metabolism and raises your levels of human growth hormone .
- Low intensity. Being consistently active and doing some low intensity exercise each day, including walking, can make a big difference.
Youre Not Striking The Right Balance
If you’ve been shunning carbohydrates because you think they’re making you fat, you might want to reconsider. Cutting out an entire macronutrient from your daily diet can make you feel deprived and tempt you to binge. Instead, reach for healthy, complex carbsthink sweet potatoes, brown rice, quinoa, oats, peas, beans, and whole grain bread. Of course, an occasion sweet is fine, but a steady diet of simple carbs, like candy, soda, sugary sweets, and processed foods with added sugar, won’t help you reach your weight-loss goal.
Tip: Go for starchy carbohydrates, which are digested more slowly and release glucose into your bloodstream more slowly.
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Weight Loss Vs Fat Loss
What has worked for you up until this point, may not be the solution you need anymore. It might be time to shake it up and give your metabolism a little kick in the butt. And it could be that you don’t need to lose weight, you really just need to change your body composition – there’s a difference! Getting a six-pack often requires a more strategic approach in fitness and tightly controlled nutrition to drive results.
Weight loss can be a decrease in either muscle, body, or usually a combination of the two. Whereas changing your body composition is focused primarily on increasing lean mass and decreasing body fat. This could mean the number on the scale goes up or stays the same, even though you are losing body fat!
So throw out your scale and grab your measuring tape, or get your body fat percentage analyzed, and track your progress using a different metric. Your ideal body fat percentage depends on age and genetics, but should fall somewhere around one of the following:
|Ideal Body Fat Percentage|
If your current percentage falls below the athlete range, you probably do not need to lose any more weight. But if you are at a higher range and looking to decrease, there are a few things you can try.
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Your Metabolism Is Slowing Down
This could be caused by a variety of different reasons. If you were always skinny as a kid, teenager, and young adult, it might come as a shock to you.
The fact is your body changes as you age.
Your bodily processes arent nearly as efficient when you get older. Because of this, you can experience significant decreases in your metabolism. This is true regardless of gender. You shouldnt expect your metabolism to maintain the rate it once was.
Thus, as you age, you need to be cognizant of the changes. That way, you can use that information to make changes to both your diet and your exercise routine.
If your metabolism is slowing down, you may need to do things to help speed it up and you may need to spend more time exercising to achieve the same results you once did.
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Your Workouts Aren’t Hard Enough
Exercise is not required for fat loss, but it can certainly help! The good news is that any exercise can help get rid of belly fat since fat loss boils down to eating fewer calories than you burn. However, certain styles of exercise like strength training and HIIT may offer additional advantages.
The Fix: Exercises That Get Rid of Belly Fat
A long jog or spin on the elliptical may no longer cut it. While you may be burning calories with a moderate workout regime, the key to increased fat burning is to increase calorie burn even after your done in the gym – by building lean mass or increasing your VO2 max. Muscle is more metabolic, meaning it helps you burn more calories at rest, and the more muscle you have, the better you store carbs and utilize them for energy.
VO2 max is the measurement of how efficiently your body can access fat stores for energy and oxygen during intense workouts. And increasing your VO2 max, will increase the amount of fat you are able to burn.
High-Intensity Interval Training – HIIT
HIIT workouts may promote fat loss and improve stamina faster than endurance training alone . HIIT not only helps you maximize fat burning throughout the day but can also whip you into shape super fast – since most workouts are short and burn a ton of calories.
Psst… the Trifecta app has a pretty sick workout timer too! And daily workouts to try.
The Perils Of Belly Fat
As you age â even if your weight on the scale doesnât change â you may notice that your belly increases in size. The development of visceral fat â which is deep, internal belly fat that surrounds your internal organs and interferes with liver function â increases your risk of heart disease and sets you up for type 2 diabetes. Visceral fat is different from subcutaneous fat, which lies right beneath the skin on your hips, legs and arms. This reduction of estrogen in women and testosterone in men after age 40 means that fat will go to the abdomen more easily. As you age, fat is more likely to accumulate as belly fat instead of going to other parts of the body.
If you intervene with diet and exercise, belly fat will shrink. A study published in the journal Obesity in 2012 showed that after one year, post-menopausal, overweight women who participated in 45 minutes of cardiovascular exercise five times a week and who reduced their caloric intake, experienced a notable reduction in their body mass index, waist size and percentage of body fat. Although this study only included women, the same strategy can be effective for men, too.
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Swap Junky Snacks For Nuts
Make nuts your go-to snack, and you might fend off age-related weight creep, suggests research from Harvard.What we observed was that on average, adults tend to gradually gain weight over time, said Deirdre K Tobias, Sc.D., an associate epidemiologist at Brigham and Womens Hospital and an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School. However, those who added nuts to their diet had less long-term gradual weight gain and were ultimately at a lower risk of developing obesity. For every half serving of nuts people ate per day, they gained less weight over the next four years and had a lower risk of obesity over the next 20 to 24 years.
A Final Note On The Best Way To Lose Belly Fat
Okay, so we’ve given you the good stuff when it comes to learning how to burn belly fat, the best diet to lose belly fat and belly fat exercises to add in to your routine. Basically everything you need to know about how to reduce belly fat.
The one takeaway we hope you leave with, though, is that for all of the ways to lose belly fat, the way you speak to and view yourself is the most important thing in all of this. Whether you do or do not want to lose stomach fat, you are still worthy of love and respect from yourself. If you feel that the only thing you can focus on is trying to lose fat fast or entering into any unhelpful and unhealthy habits, take a step back and reassess. Focus on small things like watching your stress, sleeping well or choosing nutrient-dense foods. Small, attainable goals add up to very big wins don’t lose sight of that.
*Women’s Health Naked Survey 2018
How To Lose Weight On The Master Cleanse/ Cayenne Pepper Diet
Users of the master cleanse, or lemonade diet, are advised not to jump straight into and out of the diet, but rather to slowly ease into and out of the master cleanse diet.
The experts of the cayenne pepper diet recommend following the laid out process because it gives the body a fair chance to prepare for the upcoming liquid fast.
Your Ab Muscles Are Weak
So youre within a healthy weight range, but still feel a bit puffy around your middle? The biggest reasons people who aren’t overweight don’t have tight tummies is that A. Their ab muscles are weak, and B. Theyre slouching while sitting and standing, says Thomas Nesser, Ph.D., associate professor of exercise science at Indiana State University in Terra Haute. Still, if youre already the Queen of Crunches, it can be confusing to figure out how to lose belly fat.
Use it to lose belly fat: By focusing on cranking out hundreds of sit-ups a day, youre doing your rectus abdominis favors, but are largely neglecting your obliques and deeper transversus abdominis. To pull in your midsection, you also have to target these overlooked areas and even your lower back, Nesser says, and none of the above are taxed during your typical crunch. Build a well-rounded routine of planks and these killer oblique exercises to hit the core muscles from every angle and in every inch.
And dont forget about your posture: “Remember ABC,” says , a family medicine doctor at Women’s Sports Medicine Center in New York City. “Pull in your abs, tuck your butt, and put your chest out with your shoulders down.”
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