From cutting out unnatural sugars to drinking plenty of water, here are some simple yet effective things you can do to cut the belly fat out.
Picture this. You wake up in the morning feeling completely refreshed and ready to take on the day. You start your morning routine and feel like you’re in a wonderful bubble of happiness. Everything goes fine until you look at yourself in the mirror after putting your clothes on and find your belly bulging out of that dress you picked out, and your mood turns completely upside down. That annoying layer of fat has been clinging on to your waist for ages now and you always think of doing something about it but never get the time to. Well, despite your busy routines and chaotic schedules, you can still get your fitness on track and get a healthy waistline without having to sign up for gym memberships and whacky diets that you probably won’t stick to for longer than two weeks.
A few tweaks to your lifestyle and diet can do the trick and cut off that bulging belly, and here’s what they are:
Sugar can be one of your biggest enemies when you’re trying to get yourself in shape. While one half of sugar is glucose, the other half is fructose, and it’s the responsibility of your liver to handle it. But after consuming an unhealthy level of added sugar, it puts extra pressure on your liver because of the fructose overload and the only way to deal with it is by converting it into fat. And this is one of the main culprits for the fat that’s hugging your waistline.
Other vastly dangerous items include beverages that are sugar-sweetened. By cutting down on sodas, fruit juices, and high-sugar drinks, you’re doing your body a great favor by reducing the risk of obesity. This is because calories that are in the form of liquids are not processed appropriately by your body. Children are increasing their risk of obesity by 60 percent with each portion of sugar-sweetened beverage. The bottom line is that cutting out sugar and sweetened drinks from your diet can vastly help reduce the fat in your belly, and can be replaced with whole fruits that make for great, healthy alternatives.
If you enjoy a hot beverage once in a while during the day, switch to green tea as it has more benefits than one. Owing to the catechins found in green tea, it will help you lose that unhealthy waistline and boost your metabolism. Going up to 4-5 cups is likely to give rise to the desired effects, however, it’s best to stay away from the kind of green tea served in stores because they may contain an unwanted amount of sugar. You can easily make yourself a pot of green tea at home and use natural sweeteners if you have to.
Making a few changes to the way you consume food can ensure that you don’t overeat unnecessarily. One of the basic things is to stick to a proper eating schedule by having your meals at the right time so that you don’t skip one meal and end up overeating later. Take time with your food and eat slowly because your brain needs at least 15 minutes to understand that you have eaten. Include larger portions of fruits and veggies to your meals as opposed to other items; they’re healthy and they make you full at the same time.
To make sure that you’re having healthy portions and not eating excessively, you can also opt for smaller plates. This trick will convince you that you’re having the right portions without them appearing smaller than what you usually have.
“More stress = more cortisol = higher appetite for junk food = more belly fat,” said Shawn M. Talbott, Ph.D., a nutritional biochemist. Sometimes you may feel like you can’t eat anything when you’re stressed. But often you might find that stress is leading you to have a voracious appetite, making you reach out for all those cupcakes, chocolates, ice cream and other things you consider comfort foods. When cortisol, a.k.a., the stress hormone increases when you feel anxious, it is likely to push you to overeat. And it can trigger the increase of more insulin in your body, making you crave more things sugarcoated or fried.
Make sure that you’re regularly taking time out for some stress-busting time. Strike a balance between work and leisure, so that you’re getting enough time to stay fresh and recharge your mind and body, without pushing yourself to the point of exhaustion which ultimately leads to more fat crowding around your waist.
If sugar is your worst enemy, protein can be your best friend when it comes to cutting off fat. Include more items like eggs, fish, seafood, legumes, dairy products, nuts and meat into your meals.
By doing so, your cravings drop by 60 percent, your metabolism is boosted by 80–100 calories a day, and the best part is that you might end up consuming 441 calories than what you usually consume. In addition to helping you reach that healthy waistline you’re aiming for, it also helps you stay that way too. More protein is likely to prevent the gaining back of the weight you lost. What you can also try is replacing your current cooking oil with coconut oil as that too can aid your process of cutting down belly fat.
Sometimes we disregard how important sleep can be, but there might just be a relationship between sleep and obesity, especially when you haven’t crossed the age of 40. A study from Wake Forest University School of Medicine found that participants below the age of 40 who were only getting an average of 5 hours of sleep or less were observed to develop visceral fat or have fat growing around their organs. Make sure you’re giving enough time for your mind and body to benefit from a good night’s worth of restful sleep and it could help you lose that stubborn belly fat as well.
It may taste like nothing and look like nothing, but the benefits are many. From smoother digestion to fewer feelings of bloating to improved metabolism, water can do it all. It’s best to tally up your number of glasses of water to eight to stay hydrated. It’s also a better way to reduce your calorie intake by ditching sugary drinks and having plain water when you feel thirsty. A bit of lemon or lime can elevate your glass of water when you want something more and help you get rid of that belly fat.
If you need more convincing to eat more fruits and veggies, know that they offer that much-needed fiber you need to slice off that belly fat. When you have a good amount of soluble and viscous fibers, it can bind with water and lead to the slowing down of food that makes way through your digestive system. This will make you feel hungry less often and thus keep your appetite in check. Interestingly, one research found that 14 grams of fiber consumed per day could lead to even 10 percent lesser calories consumed, and you can lose 4.5 lbs over the course of 4 months. Another research also found a 3.7 percent decrease in fat present in the abdominal cavity when 10 grams of soluble fiber was consumed daily.
If turmeric powder does not make a regular appearance in your food, then maybe you should try adding a bit of it to your meals. It is composed of curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties and even boosts your metabolism, supporting you through your belly fat-reducing process. However, if you’re not used to having the spice, it’s best to ensure that your body will not have any undesirable reactions to it. If you’re hoping to squeeze out the most benefits from it, look for turmeric extracts that have a minimum of 95 percent curcumin to add to your spice cabinet.
There are some foods that will particularly help you in the process of trimming your waistline. For breakfast, make the fiber-rich oatmeal your go-to choice. It kick-starts your metabolism in the morning and keeps you going until lunchtime so you won’t feel like snacking on something unhealthy during the day. You can pair it up with some blueberries or almonds, both of which could help you burn off the excess belly fat around your waistline.
When it comes to lunch, make yourself a salad that’s full of lettuce, arugula, spinach, and broccoli. It’s a goldmine of vitamins, minerals, and fiber and doesn’t hike up your calorie count. One big salad could be enough for a meal or you can have a small salad before your main course and find that you end up eating less of the second course. For dinner, you can include more protein as mentioned earlier. Fish like salmon and tuna can be great options that decrease inflammation, maintain the levels of hormones in your body, and of course, help you in the process of burning calories.