6 Golden Rules to Get Rid of Belly Fat for Good
Losing belly fat is not that easy. Anyone who’s ever tried it can attest to that. That’s because belly fat is stubborn and difficult to shift due to the higher number of beta fat cells that are not that responsive to the fat burning process. Aside from the aesthetic aspect, belly fat can also be a risk factor for serious diseases such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease and even cancer.
If you’re struggling with excess fat around your waistline, just know that we’ve got you covered! Here are the 6 golden rules to getting rid of belly fat for good and becoming the proud owner of a flat stomach. Make these changes and you will be able to bravely display your results!
Sugar? No, thank you
I’m sure you’ve heard it before but I’ll say it again. Sugar is bad. It is considered public enemy number one with serious detrimental effects on metabolic health.
Sugar consists of glucose and fructose, the latter only metabolized by the liver. When the liver is overburdened by large amounts of fructose, it turns it into fat. Belly fat, more often than not.
Captain’s tip: Try to reduce the amount of sugar you consume as much as possible and even eliminate sugary beverages altogether. Also, read labels carefully because sugar can lurk where we least expect it.
Make sleep your ally
You might not see any connection but numerous studies link sleep with weight issues, including belly fat. For example, one such study pointed out that individuals sleeping less than five hours per night are more likely to gain abdominal fat than those sleeping 6-8 hours. More than belly fat, sleeping issues can contribute to diabetes, obesity and heart disease.
That’s why quality sleep is extremely important not only in terms of weight loss but for your overall health. During sleep, your body adapts and recovers from the strenuous activities during the day by secreting important hormones that maintain you fit and energetic.
Captain’s tip: Relaxing activities before sleep or even sleep supplements, with a health care provider’s recommendation, of course, can be useful in facilitating a good night’s sleep and preventing belly fat.
Neutralize your stress
Don’t worry, be happy! Wouldn’t we all want to live by that phrase? Unfortunately, in today’s modern society, stress and worries are not that simple to get rid of. But maybe we should try harder. Because getting rid of stress also takes us one step closer to getting rid of belly fat.
Stress is responsible for you adding inches to your waistline due to the adrenal glands that produce cortisol, aka the stress hormone. Studies revealed that high levels of cortisol make you hungrier and promote belly fat gain.
Captain’s tip: To reduce the abdominal fat, spend as much time as you can involved in pleasurable activities. Reading, practicing yoga, walking or whatever unwinds you and neutralizes the stress in your life. And I’m also gonna let you in on a little secret: laughter is the best medicine!
Don’t forget the all-mighty protein
Although contested by some, one of the most effective evidence-based tools to losing fat on the long term is to increase the protein intake.
Many studies show that people with a higher protein intake have less belly fat compared to those with a lower protein intake. In addition, it reduces cravings by 60%, speeds up the metabolism and reduces your daily calorie intake by 440 calories. To this end, many people adopt the Paleo diet which focuses on the consumption of lean protein and whole foods.
Captain’s tip: Aim to add more protein into your diet by eating high-protein foods such as whole eggs, fish, nuts and meat. If you lack the time to prepare a healthy, protein-based meal, then you can always increase your protein intake with the help of quality protein supplements. Your waistline will end up looking great either way.
Eat nutrient-dense foods
Apart from the high-protein diet that specialists often recommend, your body also needs many important micronutrients to preserve its energy and stay in good shape.
Generally, when energy levels are low, you feel the need to eat. And it’s usually the type of consolation foods that are high in empty calories, with no nutritional value, which only contribute to excessive abdominal fat.
Captain’s tip: To prevent this, it’s best to consume nutrient-dense foods , which have positive effects on leptin sensitivity, thyroid hormones and help your body detox properly. They will also help you provide your body with the essential nutrients it needs but still maintain a proper calorie count.
Don’t leave out exercise
Abs are made in the kitchen but that doesn’t mean that exercise does not have a huge impact. We all know it does. But before you get your hopes up and start doing abs like crazy, you should know that spot reduction alone is less likely to get you rid of belly fat.
However, a combination of cardio and strength training is by far more powerful and effective, as proven by studies. For instance, one study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research showed that individuals relying on an aerobic and strength training combo registered a significant decrease in visceral fat and increase in muscle mass.
Captain’s tip: The focus should be on frequency and duration of such exercises rather than on their intensity. In addition, the benefits of exercise extend beyond belly fat loss and weight control to many more areas of our lives.