Being overweight doesn’t automatically mean you are unhealthy. People who appear to be skinny might have metabolic issues associated with obesity. Therefore, the number of your scale really doesn’t tell the full story. However, if you have a lot of excess fat around your waist, you might be suffering from health issues. Belly fat is definitely a health risk and you want to get rid of it even if you are rather skinny.
Do I have belly fat?
Belly fat refers to the fat under your skin in the waist area. Naturally, it might be visible, especially if you are clearly overweight, but you might have too much belly fat even if you are rather lean. The easiest way to check whether your belly fat is a problem is by measuring it. You can do it at home by measuring the circumference around your waist.
For men, anything above 102cm or 40 inches will be a sign of abdominal obesity. For women, the figure is 88cm or 35 inches. If you’re worried about your health or you wonder whether belly fat is a problem, use those figures as guidance.
The good news is that you can burn your belly fat and enjoy a healthier body as a result. You don’t even need to embark on any crazy diet or exercise regime: there are easy and effective ways to get rid of this fat. Here are five ways to burn your belly fat.
1. Avoid sugar and sugar-sweetened drinks
Sugar is not good for you and science is beginning to take a serious look at how we consume it and what it might be doing to our bodies. Studies have already shown sugar to affect metabolic health and there’s proof that eating a lot of refined sugar will cause the excess amounts to be turned into fat. Eating sugar is sure to cause you to have more belly fat and liver fat – both of which can lead to issues with insulin resistance and a host of other metabolic problems.
More importantly, liquid sugar from sweet drinks can cause even more belly fat problems. When you drink sugar, your brain doesn’t register the calories the same as with solid food and therefore, you might end up eating a lot more food and calories.
So, you definitely need to cut at sugar-sweetened drinks from your diet. You can change to artificial sweeteners first, but ideally, you’d want to avoid sweet drinks altogether. Start also cutting sugar from your diet, limiting yourself to a maximum of 10-25 grams of refined sugar a day.
2. Limit your carb intake
Another great way to start reducing and burning belly fat quickly is by reducing your carb intake. There are over 20 randomised studies and controlled trials that have shown people on a low-carb diet lose two to three times more fat than people on low-fat diets. The crazy thing is this works even when the low-carb people consume as much food as they want!
If you want to lose weight fast, then you should cut your daily carb intake to 50 grams per day. For those, just looking for a healthier lifestyle, limiting carbs to 100 grams a day can also work well and you’ll still burn a lot of belly fat.
3. Start eating more fibre
So far, you’ve just heard about things to cut from your diet, but it’s not just about restricting food items but also adding healthier foods in your menu. Fibre, especially viscous fibre, is an important part of weight loss and especially in your belly area. These fibres create a thick gel in the gut slowing the movement of food in your stomach and therefore, helping you to digest and absorb more of the nutrients you eat. Furthermore, you’ll feel full for longer and enjoy a reduced appetite.
The best way to get fibre and soluble fibre, in particular, is from eating vegetables and fruit. Broccoli, lentils, peas and artichokes are definitely worth adding to your diet. If you feel like you aren’t getting enough fibre from your diet, you can consider using a supplement such as glucomannan
4. Add aerobic exercise to your routine
Any sort of exercise is always good for weight loss, but if you’re concerned about belly fat, you want to start aerobic exercise. This includes things like walking, running and swimming – these have been shown to cause the biggest reductions in belly fat in numerous studies. Aerobic exercise reduces inflammation in the body and lowers blood sugar, boosting metabolism.
You don’t need a lot of knowledge or fancy equipment to get going either. Buy a pair of good walking shoes at discounted prices from lovellsoccer.co.uk where you find brands like Nike and New Balance. Download the best music on your smartphone, put on your headphones and go for a brisk walk. Try walking 15 to 30 minutes a day at a speed that slightly raises your pulse, but doesn’t cause you to go out of breath completely – you definitely need to walk faster than you normally do, but don’t start running.
5. Become a yoga keen
Another exercise that is sure to help you lose belly fat quicker is yoga. In one study, women who tried yoga for 16 weeks saw a significant reduction in visceral fat. The reason is probably yoga’s ability to reduce the cortisol levels in your body. The so-called stress hormone has been linked with body fat and by reducing stress, you can start burning more belly fat and lower fat build-up in the waist area.
Getting started on yoga is super easy as well – the Internet is full of great guides that can help you learn simple moves and useful breathing techniques. You also don’t need a lot of equipment. Use retailers like Lululemonto find a basic yoga mat and some fitting yet comfortable clothes.
If you follow the five methods above, you will burn belly fat fast and efficiently. Don’t forget that belly fat isn’t just something overweight people have to worry about – some of it can be hidden within a supposedly lean body. You definitely want to adopt some of these tactics even if you don’t need to lose weight.