We’d all love to trim a bit of fat – but as with any lifestyle change, the first step can be the hardest.
Here are some of the easiest ways you start looking after your belly today – without wasting money or turning your whole life upside-down.
1. Start cutting sugar – especially in your drinks.
The most obvious step is perhaps the most important. When you eat large amounts of refined sugar, it gives the liver far more fructose than it can handle, leaving no choice but to turn it all into fat.
It’s especially important to cut down on sugar in liquid form. According to Authority Nutrition, the brain doesn’t always register liquid calories the same way as it does solid calories. This catches the body’s processing off-guard, ultimately allowing it to accept more calories than it would otherwise.
Aim to cut sugary drinks completely out of your life. Start in small increments and challenge yourself as time goes on. It’s amazing how easy habits and cravings can change. A few months ago, I could barely fathom the idea of tea or coffee without sugar. Now, the idea of adding sweeteners at all feels ludicrous.
2. Don’t starve yourself – choose your groceries more selectively
Eating food doesn’t make you fat. Even eating fat doesn’t make you fat. It’s about avoiding processed foods. Aim to add more fruits and vegetables to your shopping trolley, with the idea of supplementing every meal.
Alongside fruits and vegetables, aim for a balance of the unprocessed foods in the following key areas – but be sure to spread them out for healthy moderation!
- Proteins (meat, eggs, dairy)
- Natural fats (olive oil, fish oil, nuts)
- Carbs (oats, rice, pasta quinoa)
3. Buy some weights for home
A recent study attempted to find the two best exercises for trimming belly fat. Thankfully, both are activities that can be done easily at home in 10 spare minutes here or there. All you’ll need are some basic weights from a sports store.
The two revealed as most effective were:
- The Squat
- The Deadlift
These two exercises are effective at building muscle mass, which in turn helps prevent muscle loss and encourage fat loss. As both these involve weight lifting, we recommend a little extra research before diving in to ensure you’re doing right by your body and back.
Of course, all exercise helps, and a varied, active routine is vital, so be sure to make these two activities part of a larger routine – not the be all and end all.
4. Turn down that second drink
They don’t call it a beer belly for nothing. Alcohol increases the appetite and slows down the body’s fat loss overall. It has a high level of calories, but lacks the equivalent healthy elements that would normally help your metabolism burn the fat.
While the odd drink here and there is always well-deserved, and we can’t begrudge any of our readers the chance to unwind. But a little bit of moderation can go a long way.
5. Cheat with smart choices in clothing.
Regardless of body shape, the way you dress can go a long way in building body confidence. Our recent guide on how to hide your muffin top offers some great starting tips.
Are you worried about tummy fat? Which of these tips are you trying? And what would you add to this list?