8 ways to reduce belly fat and live a healthier life

8 ways to reduce belly fat and live a healthier life

Here’s how to whittle down where it matters most.

  1. Try curbing carbs instead of fats.

    When Johns Hopkins researchers compared the effects on the heart of losing weight through a low-carbohydrate diet versus a low-fat diet for six months—each containing the same amount of calories—those on a low-carb diet lost an average of 10 pounds more than those on a low-fat diet—28.9 pounds versus 18.7 pounds. An extra benefit of the low-carb diet is that it produced a higher quality of weight loss, Stewart says. With weight loss, fat is reduced, but there is also often a loss of lean tissue (muscle), which is not desirable. On both diets, there was a loss of about 2 to 3 pounds of good lean tissue along with the fat, which means that the fat loss percentage was much higher on the low-carb diet.

  2. Think eating plan, not diet.

    Ultimately, you need to pick a healthy eating plan you can stick to, Stewart says. The benefit of a low-carb approach is that it simply involves learning better food choices—no calorie-counting is necessary. In general, a low-carb way of eating shifts your intake away from problem foods—those high in carbs and sugar and without much fiber, like bread, bagels and sodas—and toward high-fiber or high-protein choices, like vegetables, beans and healthy meats.

  3. Keep moving.

    Physical activity helps burn abdominal fat. “One of the biggest benefits of exercise is that you get a lot of bang for your buck on body composition,” Stewart says. Exercise seems to work off belly fat in particular because it reduces circulating levels of insulin—which would otherwise signal the body to hang on to fat—and causes the liver to use up fatty acids, especially those nearby visceral fat deposits, he says.

    The amount of exercise you need for weight loss depends on your goals. For most people, this can mean 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise nearly every day.

  4. Lift weights.

    Adding even moderate strength training to aerobic exercise helps build lean muscle mass, which causes you to burn more calories throughout the entire day, both at rest and during exercise.

  5. Become a label reader.

    Compare and contrast brands. Some yogurts, for example, boast that they’re low in fat, but they’re higher in carbs and added sugars than others, Stewart says. Foods like gravy, mayonnaise, sauces and salad dressings often contain high amounts of fat and lots of calories.

  6. Move away from processed foods.

    The ingredients in packaged goods and snack foods are often heavy on trans fats, added sugar and added salt or sodium—three things that make it difficult to lose weight.

  7. Focus on the way your clothes fit more than reading a scale.

    As you add muscle mass and lose fat, the reading on your bathroom scale may not change much, but your pants will be looser. That’s a better mark of progress. Measured around, your waistline should be less than 35 inches if you’re a woman or less than 40 inches if you’re a man to reduce heart and diabetes risks.

  8. Hang out with health-focused friends.

    Research shows that you’re more apt to eat better and exercise more if your friends and family are doing the same.

Definitions

Insulin (in-suh-lin): A hormone made by the cells in your pancreas. Insulin helps your body store the glucose (sugar) from your meals. If you have diabetes and your pancreas is unable to make enough of this hormone, you may be prescribed medicines to help your liver make more or make your muscles more sensitive to the available insulin. If these medicines are not enough, you may be prescribed insulin shots.

 

Blood vessels (veh-suls): The system of flexible tubes—arteries, capillaries and veins—that carries blood through the body. Oxygen and nutrients are delivered by arteries to tiny, thin-walled capillaries that feed them to cells and pick up waste material, including carbon dioxide. Capillaries pass the waste to veins, which take the blood back to the heart and lungs, where carbon dioxide is let out through your breath as you exhale.

16 Comments

  1. Reply

    This is really helpful

  2. Reply

    Thanks for the update

  3. Reply

    This is really good and interesting to know

  4. Reply

    Thanks

  5. Profile photo ofItz Kvng Twitch

    Reply

    Very interesting

  6. Reply

    Nice article

  7. Reply

    Belly fat can really cause a lot of discomfort if care is not taken.
    These are very helpful tips

  8. Reply

    Wow I really need this

  9. Reply

    Good article

  10. Reply

    very good

  11. Reply

    This is very good…belly fat are disturbing

  12. Reply

    This is good

  13. Reply

    An extra benefit of the low-carb diet is that it produced a higher quality of weight loss

  14. Reply

    Thanks for this

  15. Reply

    Nice

  16. Reply

    Nice info thanks for sharing

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