Having a flat belly is an elusive dream for many. For women, belly fat can be very painful if it is allowed to go beyond the normal levels. It can be a source of security especially when referred in unpleasant terms such as “tyres”.
In men, belly fat manifests in a protruded belly that is uncomfortable for most people given society’s dislike for the one pack. Yet, apart from these lifestyle challenges, having too much belly fat is unhealthy; studies have shown it is associated with higher risks of heart disease, diabetes and certain kinds of cancer.
In theory, losing the belly fat requires a balanced, calorie-controlled diet and moderate physical exercises. For many who are faced with this challenge, this kind of advice seems abstract. We will help you understand the exact steps you should take.
Believe it or not, you can develop your deep abdominal muscles by sucking in your belly. Exhale completely and then pull your belly button in and up slowly. Hold this position for 10 seconds and then rest for 10 seconds. You can do this on your hands and knees or standing.
Pelvic exercises work on your lower abdomen. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Tighten your abdominal muscles and bend your pelvis up slightly. Hold for five to 10 seconds. Repeat.
Here’s another pelvic exercise. Lie on your back with your knees bent up toward your chest and your arms at your sides. Tighten your lower abdomen and try to lift your buttocks up off the floor. Hold for five to 10 seconds. Repeat.
How often you do these exercises depends upon your physical condition. Don’t do anything that hurts. And checking with your doctor before starting a new exercise program is recommended.
Eat! Don’t skip meals; otherwise you’ll become too hungry, eat too fast, and ultimately eat too much.
- Get enough fiber: Hairston’s research shows that people who eat 10 grams of soluble fiber per day — without any other diet changes — build up less visceral fat over time than others. That’s as simple as eating two small apples, a cup of green peas, or a half-cup of pinto beans.
Transition to whole grains. Whole grains are richer in nutrients and fiber, helping you to stay full longer and preventing nasty spikes in insulin, which trigger belly fat storage.
Stay active. Even if you don’t have a regular exercise routine, get a pedometer and make sure you get in a minimum of 10,000 steps every single day.
Eat more produce. Fresh vegetables and fruits are key to good nutrition. They’re loaded with filling fiber and packed full of disease-fighting antioxidants. They’re also low in calories.
Avoid inflammatory foods. Inflammation triggers belly fat storage and is an underlying factor in many disease states. Avoid refined carbohydrates, foods rich in saturated fats and fats, and highly processed foods.
Eat at least one good source of healthy fat every day. Monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids help to fight both belly fat and inflammation. These fats are essential to maintaining a desirable body weight as well as preventing disease.
Drink at least 8–10 cups of water every day. Hydration helps keep your energy level up, fills you up to help you reduce your portions at meals and snacks, and helps your metabolism function at its peak. So drink up!
Practice mindful eating. This principle may be one of the most important. You need to learn your body’s hunger and satiety cues to be able to maintain a healthy body weight for life.
What is more? Belly fat is the first to go when you diet and exercise. Almost everyone who loses weight will lose it first in the belly. And they will lose proportionately more weight in this region than in other parts of the body.