It is a misconception that by doing sit-ups you’ll get yourself a flat stomach. It helps to do core work but just like most things, belly fat is more complicated than doing a few planks at the end of a workout.
Let’s talk about fat first. There are two types: subcutaneous and visceral. Subcutaneous fat is the fat you can grab, it is found just beneath the skin. Visceral fat is located deep within the abdominal wall and surrounds the organs. This is the dangerous type of fat as it is linked to diseases. The visceral fat is a result of poor lifestyle choices, processed foods, sugar, drugs, alcohol and other unhealthy habits. The good news is that visceral fat can be reduced and often easier than the superficial layer.
Tips to Reduce the Belly Fat
Blood sugar regulation.
A sign of a person who is becoming insulin resistant is excess fat around the stomach. In order to stabilise insulin and balance your blood sugar levels food choice is paramount.
Consume low glycemic load (GL) meals. Choose real food. Fill up on your green vegetables and choose lower GI fruits such as berries. You can lower the GL of meals by adding avocado, raw nuts and seeds to meals. Spices such as turmeric, cinnamon and cacao work too. And so does a bit of apple cider vinegar or lemon. Include a good quality protein in each meal. Poor sleep also makes your cells more resistant to insulin which will increase belly fat.
Balance stress levels.
When you are stressed your cortisol is high. Constantly high cortisol levels can lead to belly fat accumulation.
Stress can come in many forms such as emotional stress but also physical pain, eating foods you are sensitive too, sleep deprivation and too much exercise.
Find ways to balance out your stress. Cut back on your exercise if you need to. Exercising smart three times a week is enough, training every day is too much. Strength training is essential to losing belly fat. Exercises such as chin ups, deadlifts, squats, lunges and pushups are a must. Try walking more, stretching and other activities that calm you. Grab a book and sit outside in the fresh air.
Consider nutrient support.
A multi, Vit D, probiotics, essential fatty acids, and magnesium are my top 5 for fat loss and general health.
Identify food intolerances and sensitivities.
Sensitives can cause belly fat, inflammation, bloating, moodiness and water retention. A lot of people don’t know what it feels like to feel good so this can be hard. Having a bloated stomach can be the norm. But it doesn’t have to be. Start to pay attention to how you feel after a meal. Rotate your foods as well. Have food x for breakfast one week and then food b the next. By comparing you may be able to tell what it is. Common food sensitives are corn, soy, sugar, artificial sweeteners, dairy, wheat and gluten. Check out my food intolerance service if you’d like to be tested.
It is what you do most of the time that counts. Simple changes will be noticeable right away and you’ll notice less bloating and puffiness. But you need to be patient for long-lasting change. It does happen and you’re body will thank you for it!