Motivation Monday: 6 Ways to Banish Belly Fat

Fitness with Carriehas 6 ways to get rid of belly fat and slim down your stomach!

If you want to get rid of belly fat, the obvious answer is to stop eating so much junk and to get some exercise. Beyond that, you can start to lose deep fat through these basic lifestyle tweaks:

Catching more zzz’s might be one of the most enjoyable ways to lower belly fat. One 6-year study, on 293 adults ranging in age from 18 on 65, showed that when people increased their sleep from less than six hours a night to between seven or eight hours, they experienced a significant drop in visceral fat.

If you’re looking for belly fat burning exercises, you’re going to need something that’s high intensity. A study on middle-aged obese women with metabolic syndrome showed that high intensity exercise (such as Beachbody programs INSANITY and CORE DE FORCE) did a better job of banishing visceral fat than low-intensity exercise (such as sustained jogging) or no exercise at all.

It’s true – eating more of certain foods can actually help you get rid of belly fat. A five-year study on minorities ranging in age from 18 to 81 showed that if you add soluble fiber to your diet, and combine it with exercise, you can accelerate visceral fat loss. You’ll find soluble fiber in oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, peas, and some fruits and vegetables, including apples, pears, and Brussels sprouts.

While you can eat more soluble fiber to lower belly fat, you’ll want to reduce the amount of carbs you consume to slim down your stomach fat.

Not all fats are created equal when it comes to slimming down your stomach. Researchers in Sweden fed 39 young men 750 extra calories daily for seven weeks in the form of very big muffins. One group were fed muffins with saturated fat in the form of palm oil and the second group ate muffins with polyunsaturated fat in the form of sunflower oil. Not surprisingly, the group fed saturated fat gained more visceral fat (as well as subcutaneous fat and liver fat) than the group fed polyunsaturated fat. Given that there are many types of both saturated and unsaturated fat, it’s unfair to categorically condemn all saturated fats, but it’s still worth considering or at least reducing. Regardless, no good has ever come from adding a giant muffin to your daily meal plan—so don’t do that.

If you’ve changed your diet and started doing fat-burning workouts, but you’re still not getting rid of belly fat like you want, you might need to look at another part of your lifestyle. Stress triggers the production of cortisol, which increases visceral fat. The link is that simple. A little stress, like the kind your body experiences working out, is fine, but chronic stress can be problematic. Studies on both humans and monkeys confirm this. Admittedly, telling someone to stop stressing is a little like telling someone to “be funny” or “don’t look at the giant mole on my forehead” (i.e., it’s easier said than done), but de-stressing your life is possible. You just need to be patient. Look into things like meditation or yoga, or just take a couple minutes each day to stop and breathe deeply. You’ll be thinner—and saner—in no time.

-by Fitness with Carrie

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