Due to our sedentary lifestyles and stressful jobs, fat can easily build up and can be very hard to shift. Sadly, fat deposits around the tummy are linked to serious health issues, including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
Below are a few simple suggestions:
Everyone knows that regular exercise is key to losing weight, however not everyone is aware that resistance training is one of the best ways.
Resistance training, known as weight lifting or strength training, is important for improving and maintaining muscle mass. It also helps to spike our metabolism, which means our body burns fat even after we’ve left the gym.
However, it is worth saying that the best possible training plan probably combines a variety of exercises. In one recent study, it was proved that a combination of weight training and aerobic exercise was the most beneficial.
Drink less alcohol
It’s easy to reach for a glass of wine or bottle of chilled beer at the end of a hard day, but studies show that alcohol is one of the main offenders when it comes to storing belly fat. If you consume just two glasses of wine an evening, that’s an extra 72,000 calories a year, which equates to 20 pounds of fat.
Alcohol contains high amounts of ’empty’ calories, which don’t have any nutritional value. Women are more likely to store fat created by surplus calories on their hips, thighs and arms, men store it on their tummy, hence the term ‘beer belly.’
Eat a high protein diet
Evidence suggests that protein is key to losing tummy fat. It releases a hormone, which helps to send a message to the brain that we’re full, so a portion of protein in a meal should help us avoid overeating.
Studies prove that people with a higher protein intake have lower levels of belly fat.
Reduce stress levels
Stress causes the body to gain fat, because it triggers the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which in turn increases our appetite. Relieving stress levels is personal as we’re all different, but studies show that getting out in nature and regular exercise, work to reduce our anxiety.
Eat less sugary foods
Sugar is different to other food groups because it confuses the normal appetite controls and causes the body to produce fat.
As I have previously blogged, refined sugars are hidden in a many of different products that you wouldn’t expect, so we should all check food labels before buying those products.
Eat fatty fish
Eating fatty fish is excellent for weight loss, when accompanied by a balanced diet and regular exercise. Foods such as mackerel and herring are high in protein and ‘good fats’ that help to break down some of the more dangerous fats in your body. We should all try to eat fish two or three times a week.
Eat soluble fibre
Soluble fibre is ideal for aiding weight loss because it forms a gel with the food in our digestive tract, slowing it down as it passes through. Studies show that this type of fibre helps us lose weight, because we feel fuller for longer, meaning we naturally eat less. Excellent foods to eat to increase soluble fibre intake include avocados, legumes and blackberries.
Finally, exercise and lifestyle are very much instrumental in us being able to lose tummy fat.