Belly fat is an uncomfortable annoyance you have control over. One type of belly fat is visceral fat. It is a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other severe conditions. Though losing fat in this area can be challenging, there are many things you can do to reduce that excess fat. Here are 7 practical tips to lose belly fat.
Easy Ways To Lose Belly Fat
1. Cut Sugar-Sweetened Beverages From Your Diet
Sugar-sweetened beverages are filled with liquid fructose, which makes your belly fat. Studies confirm that sodas lead to increased fat in the liver. These sweetened beverages are even worse than high-sugar foods. To cut down on belly fat, it’s best to avoid sugar-sweetened drinks altogether – yes, stay away from the following:
- sweet tea
- alcoholic mixers containing sugar
2. Consider Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting has recently grown into a viral weight-loss method.
To put it simply, it’s an eating pattern that cycles between periods of eating and periods of fasting. For example, one common method involves fasting for 24 hours once or twice a week. Another popular method consists of fasting every day for 16 hours and consuming all your food within 8 hours. In a recent study on intermittent fasting, people saw a 4–7% decrease in abdominal fat within 6–24 weeks.
3. Stay Away From Sugary Foods
Sugar contains fructose, which is the culprit linked to many chronic diseases. These include type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and fatty liver disease. That said, cut down on your guilty pleasures, the late-night snacks, your dessert after every meal. Don’t substitute for healthier sugars either. It’s important to know that not just refined sugar can lead to belly fat gain. Even healthier sugars, such as raw honey, can be a danger when consumed in excess.
4. Eat a High Protein Diet
Protein is an essential nutrient for weight control. Consuming a lot of protein increases the release of the fullness hormone PYY, reducing appetite and promoting satiety. Protein also increases your metabolic rate and helps you to maintain muscle mass as you lose weight.
Many studies reveal that people with high protein intake tend to have less abdominal fat than those with less. Be sure to add a good protein source every day, such as:
- whey protein
5. Manage Your Stress Levels
Sustained stress can make you gain belly fat by promoting the release of cortisol, also known as the stress hormone. Studies show that high cortisol levels boost the urge to eat and promote abdominal fat storage.
To help reduce belly fat, consider engaging in pleasurable activities that relieve stress. For example, practicing yoga or meditation can be effective methods. Of course, working out every day (even if it’s for 30 minutes) is a great one too.
6. Eat Plenty of Soluble Fiber
Soluble fiber can absorb water and form a gel-type substance that helps slow down food as it moves through your digestive tract.
This type of fiber supports weight loss by helping you feel satiated, so you naturally eat less. It may also reduce the number of calories your body would typically absorb from a particular food. Excellent sources of soluble fiber include:
- flax seeds
- shirataki noodles
- Brussels sprouts
7. Cut Back on Alcohol
While alcohol has a couple of health benefits in small amounts, it’s seriously harmful if you overdo it. Research suggests that high alcohol intake can make you gain belly fat.
Observational studies reveal that heavy alcohol consumption increases the risk of developing central obesity(excess fat storage around the waist). That said, cutting back on alcohol may help reduce your belly size. Of course, you don’t need to give it up altogether; we know life gets crazy sometimes, but limiting the amount you drink per day will help.
There are no magical solutions when it comes to losing belly fat. No overnight injection that’s going to make it all go away. Weight loss requires some discipline, dedication, and perseverance on your behalf, and consistent work. Effectively incorporating some or all of the strategies and lifestyle goals discussed in this post will definitely help you lose those extra pounds.