Losing belly fat is a very common goal amongst people of all ages and lifestyles. Abdominal fat specifically is a very harmful type of fat as it has been linked with both type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It’s safe to say that many people are after that summer body but for others losing belly fat can have significant benefits for their health and well-being.
Below we will be going through the best habits and exercises you can practise in order to lose/reduce your belly fat. Unfortunately exercise alone is not enough to get rid of that unwanted fat! It is about changing your lifestyle and the choices you make in the kitchen.
Having a calorie deficit means you are consuming less calories than you burn in a day.
The amount of calories each individual person requires in a day varies significantly based on their gender, age ,height, weight, activity levels etc. However, below is a guide on how many calories specific groups require daily:
Age Sedentary Moderate Active
19–35 2,600 2,800 3,000
36–60 2,400 2,600 2,800
60+ 2,000 2,400 2,600
Age Sedentary Moderate Active
19–30 2,000 2,200 2,400
31–60 1,800 2,000 2,200
60+ 1,600 1,800 2,000
You can create a calorie deficit by reducing your calorie intake but it can also be done by increasing your physical activity daily. To lose .5-1kg of weight per week, you would need to eat 500–1,000 less calories than your body requires per day. Maintaining a calorie deficit is an important part of fat loss, but there is a lot more to it. This is because it is not just calories alone that affect your fat gain/loss.
Maintaining a Healthy Diet
Avoid sugar and sugar-sweetened drinks:
We all know that foods with added sugars are bad for your health. However, many are oblivious to the fact that they are a major cause of belly fat.
Endless studies have found that excess sugar in your diet can lead to fat building up around your abdomen and liver.
Try minimizing the amount of sugar in your diet and consider completely eliminating sugary drinks. We would highly recommend opting for the “diet” or “zero” option whenever purchasing soft drinks.
Eat fewer carbohydrates:
It may seem obvious but there is a lot more to it than you think. Eating fewer carbohydrates is a very effective way to lose fat and not just because you will have a lower calorie intake.
When you eat less carbs your appetite will reduce. As your intake reduces, so will your cravings. This is a great way to ensure you are maintaining that calorie deficit that was previously mentioned.
Another benefit of a lower carb intake includes the reduction in water weight. This effect can occur very quickly as your intake lowers. You will even see results in 1-2 days!
Adding protein can be one of the most effective changes you can make to your diet in order to lose belly fat. It increases muscle recovery and enhances muscle growth and leaves you being fuller for longer.
Protein is such an important part of this process because even a modest increase in protein intake can also help prevent weight regain. So if you are serious about shredding that weight and keeping it that way, eating more protein comes highly recommended.
When we talk about proteins, we are talking about whole eggs, fish, nuts, meat, and dairy products. These are the best protein sources that can easily be added to your daily food plan.
You knew it was coming. Exercise is the fastest and most effective way to lose belly fat. But you already knew that so instead of telling you why exercise works we will go through what exercises work, specifically when trying to lose weight/build muscle around the belly.
Mountain Climbers: This exercise is very effective because it combines a great strength training exercise with a cardio workout. You will really get a sweat on and burn those calories.
Russian Twists: If you want rid of those love handles this is the exercise for you! It works your obliques which are your lateral abdominal muscles that lie underneath your “love handle” fat.
Flutter Kicks: In order to ensure you are hitting all the areas of belly fat we have included flutter kicks. This exercise directly focuses on the lower abdominal muscles. Therefore, this exercise is great if you are looking to cut down on excess fat below your belly button.
If you are looking to lose fat quickly core exercises will not provide results alone. You also need to include cardiovascular exercise into your weekly routine. Basic exercise such as walking are a great start but realistically you want to progress onto running as it can burn almost double the calories. There are, of course, numerous other exercises that will benefit weight loss greatly. These include the likes of cycling, rowing etc.