Belly fat, also known as visceral fat, is not just a cosmetic concern; it’s a health hazard. Excess belly fat increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and even some types of cancer. It also affects your sleep quality and blood vessel function. While it’s not possible to target belly fat specifically when you diet, losing weight overall can help you shrink your waistline and reduce the dangerous layer of visceral fat in your abdominal cavity. Here are seven science-backed tips to help you lose belly fat and live longer.
Cut Carbs, Not Fats
A low-carbohydrate diet can help you lose weight and belly fat, according to a study by Johns Hopkins researchers. The study compared the effects of a low-carb diet versus a low-fat diet for six months, with each diet containing the same number of calories. Those on a low-carb diet lost an average of 10 pounds more than those on a low-fat diet, and they also experienced a higher quality of weight loss. . The researchers suggest that a low-carb diet may be a better option for weight loss and belly fat reduction.
Focus on Eating Habits, Not Diets
Ultimately, the best way to lose weight and belly fat is to choose a healthy eating plan that you can stick to. A low-carb approach involves shifting your intake away from problem foods like bread, bagels, and sodas, and towards high-fiber or high-protein choices like vegetables, beans, and healthy meats. You don’t need to count calories, but you do need to make better food choices.
Physical activity is essential for burning abdominal fat. Exercise reduces circulating levels of insulin, which signals the body to hang on to fat, and causes the liver to use up fatty acids, especially those near visceral fat deposits. A combination of aerobic exercise and strength training can help you build lean muscle mass, which increases your metabolism and burns more calories throughout the day, even when you’re resting.
Adding even moderate strength training to aerobic exercise can help you build lean muscle mass, burn more calories, and reduce belly fat. Strength training helps you maintain muscle mass while losing weight, and it can also improve your bone density and balance.
Comparing and contrasting brands can help you make better food choices. For example, some yogurts claim to be low in fat, but they’re higher in carbs and added sugars than others. Gravy, mayonnaise, sauces, and salad dressings often contain high amounts of fat and calories, so it’s important to read the labels and choose healthier options.
Avoid Processed Foods
Packaged goods and snack foods are often high in trans fats, added sugar, and sodium, which can make it difficult to lose weight and reduce belly fat. Instead, focus on eating whole foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains.
Focus on the way your clothes fit more than reading a scale
As you start to lose belly fat, you may not see a significant change in your weight. This is because you are losing fat but building muscle at the same time, which can balance out the scale. Instead, focus on the way your clothes fit as a better marker of progress. You’ll likely notice your pants getting looser as you lose belly fat and gain muscle.
Hang out with health-focused friends
Research shows that people are more likely to adopt healthier habits if their friends and family are doing the same. Surround yourself with friends and family members who prioritize healthy eating and exercise. Not only will it be easier to stick to your goals, but you’ll also have a support system to help you along the way.
Losing belly fat is not easy, but it’s necessary for overall health and well-being. By incorporating a healthy diet and regular exercise into your daily routine, you can start to reduce your belly fat and improve your health. It’s important to remember that this is a process that takes time and consistency. Be patient and stay committed to your goals, and you’ll see the results in time.