How is everyone enjoying their week so far? Are you guys eating well & staying on track?
You’re all doing so well with your healthy eating plans. Getting a balance is key – even at Christmas.
Many of us may be feeling heavier than usual. And one area that usually shows the Christmas podge is the abdominal area...the dreaded belly fat!
Belly fat is usually estimated by measuring the circumference around your waist. This can easily be done at home with a simple tape measure. Anything above 40 inches (102 cm) in men and 35 inches (88 cm) in women, is known as abdominal obesity. There are actually a few proven strategies that have been shown to target the fat in the belly area more than other areas of the body.
Here are 4 evidence-based ways to lose belly fat.
1) Don’t eat sugar and avoid sugar-sweetened drinks
Added sugar is very unhealthy. Studies show that it has uniquely harmful effects on metabolic health. When you eat a lot of refined sugar, the liver gets overloaded with fructose, and is forced to turn it all into fat. It increases belly fat and liver fat, which leads to insulin resistance and a host of metabolic problems. Make a decision to minimize the amount of sugar in your diet, and consider completely eliminating sugary drinks.
If you want to cut back on refined sugar, then you must start reading labels. Even foods marketed as “health foods” can contain huge amounts of sugar.
2) Eating more protein
Protein is the most important macronutrient when it comes to losing weight. It can reduce cravings, boost metabolism by 80-100 calories per day and help you eat up to 441 fewer calories per day.
So make an effort to increase your intake of whole eggs, fish, seafood, legumes, nuts, meat, dairy products and some whole grains. These are the best protein sources in the diet.
3) Cut carbs from your diet
When people cut carbs, their appetite goes down and they lose weight Low-carb diets lead to 2-3 times more weight loss than low-fat diets. Low-carb diets also lead to quick reductions in water weight, which gives people near instant results. A major difference on the scale is often seen within a few days. Low-carb diets specifically target the fat in the belly, and around the organs and liver (the dangerous and disease promoting abdominal fat).Just avoiding the refined carbs (white breads, pastas, etc) should be sufficient, especially if you keep your protein high.
4) Exercise is very effective at reducing belly fat
Exercise does appears to be effective at reducing belly fat. However, keep in mind that I’m not talking about abdominal exercises here. Spot reduction (losing fat in one spot) is not possible, and doing endless amounts of crunches will not make you lose fat from the belly.
Aerobic exercise (like walking, running, swimming, etc) has been shown to cause major reductions in belly fat. Another study found that exercise completely prevented people from re-gaining abdominal fat after weight loss. Exercise also leads to reduced inflammation, blood sugar levels and all the other metabolic abnormalities that are associated with central obesity.
So guys if you’re feeling a tad wobbly after Christmas then think about getting motivated and ready for the new year. It’s never too late to start but it’s always a bit easier if you keep on track as much as you can.
See you soon
“There’s no diet that will do what healthy eating does. Skip the diet and just eat healthy.”