Fat can be accumulated in any body parts, but the kind that is attached to your mid-section might be the toughest to shed. If you got a large waist measurement, then it means that you have too much accumulated visceral fat. This fat stored around your liver and pancreas is commonly referred to as ‘belly fat’. Losing belly fat might be a difficult task, but not impossible. To get that perfect shape, stick on to a proper diet plan along with the right belly fat reduction exercises.
Belly Fat – Causes
Gaining belly fat is absolutely unhealthy. People usually put on this unwanted fat when they eat or drink more calories than they burn, after pregnancy, or when they become middle-aged. The main causes of belly fat are as follows:
- Poor diet
- Lack of exercise
- Alcohol consumption
If you want to know whether or not you are carrying too much abdominal fat, measure your waist circumference. To do this, stand up straight, take out a measuring tape and wrap it around your waist over the belly button. Keep in mind not to suck in your stomach.
In the case of women, a waist circumference of 35 inches or more is a sign of a potentially dangerous amount of belly fat. Whereas, for men, it is 40 inches or more. Consult a doctor to know the accuracy of these calculations as chances are there that some health conditions can impact the effectiveness of these measurements. You can also consult a doctor online.
How Belly Fat Accumulation Affects Your Overall Health?
Excess belly fat is one of the major cause of many health problems. This includes:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Respiratory diseases
- Memory loss
Weight Loss Workout Plan – Belly Fat Reduction Exercises
Given below are some of the best belly fat reduction exercises.
To do a basic crunch, lie down and keep your feet on the floor hip-width apart. Bend your knees. After that, you can either place your hands behind the head (make sure to keep your thumbs behind the ears) or keep your hands across the chest. Contract your abs and inhale. Exhale and lift your head, neck, and shoulder blades off the floor. Hold on for a few seconds and then return to the initial position.
Press your hands as well as knees to the ground. Keep your back in a neutral position, and your wrists should be aligned directly under the shoulders. Make sure to keep the back of your neck parallel to the ceiling. After that, extend your legs back and keep your toes flexed.
Now, let your hands and toes support your body weight. Engage the abdominal muscles and draw your navel towards the spine. Keep your body in a straight line from ears to toes without bending. Stay in this position for at least 10 seconds. Go back to your initial position.
3. Bicycle Exercise
To begin this belly fat reduction exercise, lie down and keep your back pressed into the ground. Your head and shoulders should be raised slightly above it. Keep your hands on the sides of your head. Make sure not to knit your fingers behind. Lift your right leg off the ground and extend it out to about 45-degree angle while turning your upper body to the left by bringing your right elbow to the left knee. Switch sides and do the same on the other side.
4. Mountain Climbers
Start this exercise in a high plank position. Keep your shoulders directly over hands and wrists. Maintain a neutral spine by making sure to keep your back flat and butt down. Engage your core, lift your right knee, and bring it towards your chest.
Return your knee back to the initial position as you simultaneously lift the left knee up towards the chest. Go back to the starting position. Switch legs and begin to pick up the pace until you feel that you are actually running in the plank position.
5. Leg Lifts
Lie down and place your hands on the floor. Then, raise both your leg off the ground. Make sure to lock your knees throughout the exercise. Stay in this position for at least 30 seconds and after that return to your initial position.
6. Stomach Vacuum
Stand straight and keep your hands on the hips. Then, completely exhale all the air out of the lungs. Expand your chest and bring in your stomach as much as you can. Hold on to this for at least 15 seconds. At this stage, try to breathe in a normal way. After that, inhale and bring your stomach back to the initial position.
Perform three sets of ten or fifteen reps of all these exercises.
Read More – Exercises to gain weight for females
Aerobic Exercises to Lose Belly Fat
Aerobic exercises play a major role in improving your health in a number of ways. If you wish to burn those stubborn unhealthy fat around your stomach, you will have to work on burning the overall fat in your body, and aerobic exercises work best for this. People often it difficult to accommodate anaerobic exercises in their lifestyle. Aerobic exercises are of lesser intensity and are very much easier to inculcate in your day to day life.
Here is a list of aerobic exercises to lose belly fat:
- Stair training
Apart from the belly fat reduction exercises mentioned here, try practising yoga poses for a healthy body and flat stomach. Yoga poses like Naukasana (Boat Pose) and Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose) help to shed the fat accumulated in your belly. Before you start a new exercise routine, it is always recommended to consult a doctor if you have:
- Heart diseases
- Kidney problems
- High blood pressure
Best Foods to Reduce Belly Fat
Belly fat affects the functioning of almost all the organs in your body. Therefore, to fight belly fat, follow the tips mentioned below and know more about the best weight loss friendly foods.
1. Eat fibre rich foods
- Leafy Vegetables
Enriched with the goodness of fibres, vitamins, and minerals, spinach and other leafy veggies such as kale, cabbage, broccoli, lettuce, etc. help in burning belly fat. They offer folic acid, which improves the digestion process and metabolism. The vitamin A and vitamin C present in these leafy vegetables reduce oxidative stress and break down the stress hormones in your body that stores belly fat.
Adding almond to your diet helps you in shedding those unwanted belly fats. Almonds are rich in vitamin E, magnesium, and copper. Eating almonds in between your meals can make you feel full for a very long time and stops you from eating unhealthy junk foods.
They are loaded with fibres, proteins, and other healthy fats.The healthy fats present in almonds maintain and reduce the overall body mass index, making you lose the stubborn belly fat.
They contain enough fibres that help in curbing the appetite and burn belly fat. The indigestible fibres present in banana blocks the carbohydrates being absorbed by the body. Banana also boosts your metabolic rate, thereby burning the fat present in your tummy.
Beans have the ideal macronutrient composition, that is, the perfect ratio of fibre and proteins. It helps to fight the inflammation in the digestive system that causes belly fat. Consumption of beans can also reduce the risk of obesity.
2. Avoid sugary foods and drinks
Foods and drinks with added sugars are extremely bad for your health. Sugar is a combination of glucose and fructose. When you take too much of added sugar, your liver gets overloaded with fructose and fat gets accumulated. It increases both the abdominal and liver fat leading to insulin resistance and several metabolic problems.
Liquid sugar is as worse as solid sugar. Your brain doesn’t register liquid calories, and therefore, when you consume sugar-sweetened drinks, you end up taking more calories.
Try sweetening your drinks with raw honey or stevia. You can also use these alternatives for sugar-sweetened drinks:
- Herbal tea
- Fresh juice
3. Increase protein intake
Eggs are a rich source of protein that contains both fat-soluble vitamins and water that helps to reduce hunger and build lean muscles. Eat eggs for breakfast or include it into your fitness diet plan.
- Fatty fish
Being a good source of proteins and omega 3 fatty acids, intake of fish helps to reduce inflammation in your body, thereby increasing the metabolic rate. They are also great for your brain health.
- Dairy products
Loaded with vitamins and proteins, dairy products keep you satiated for long hours and makes you less hungry. They contain bioactive compounds such as angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors as well as branched-chain amino acids. These compounds work with calcium and prevent fat accumulation.
- Chia seeds
Include chia seeds in your fitness diet plan to burn belly fat. They are rich in proteins and contain high amounts of dietary fibres. Chia seeds improve digestion, metabolism and also prevent you from overeating.
4. Reduce the amount of carbohydrates
Cutting carbs in your diet is an effective way to reduce belly fat. Reducing carbohydrates eliminates excess fat, increase energy levels, and stabilize your blood sugar levels.
5. Drink green tea
Green tea contains catechins and antioxidants that help to reduce belly fat. It cleanses, heals, and rejuvenates the body from inside. This powerful drink has zero calories. It fills your tummy by taking you to the point of satiety and prevents you from binge eating junk foods.
Simple and Effective Tips to Reduce Belly Fat
- Replace some of your cooking fats with coconut oil
- Drink plenty of water
- Avoid alcohol
- Try taking ayurvedic medicines for weight loss such as triphala and dalchini
- Reduce your stress levels
- Get plenty of sleep
Keep in mind all those things mentioned above and stay healthy to get that perfect belly!