It is known that being overweight or obese can bring many health risks.
Research has shown that many chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure are related to obesity.
In addition, obesity has been found linked to more than 10 types of cancer.
Recent research also has shown that the fat in the belly is extremely harmful to our health. The harm exists even in slim people.
Therefore, maintaining a trim waist does not only make you look great but also keeps you healthy and helps you live longer.
But losing weight is hard, and losing belly fat is even harder.
So how to reduce belly fat successfully?
Kerry Stewart, Ed.D., director of Clinical and Research Physiology at Johns Hopkins, provides 8 tips for people who need to lose belly fat.
Thinking about a healthy eating plan, not just a short-term diet
The most effective way to lose belly fat and maintain the weight loss is having a healthy eating plan you can stick to.
In your eating plan, you can have better food choices and you don’t need to count calories all the time.
Such a plan should focus on high-fiber or high-protein choices, like vegetables, beans, and healthy meats.
It also reduces added sugar and foods without much fiber, like bread, bagels, and sodas.
Reduce carbs instead of fats in your diet
One recent study compared the effects on the heart of losing weight through a low-carbohydrate diet versus a low-fat diet that contains the same amount of calories.
It found people who were on a low-carb diet lost an average of 10 pounds more than people who were on a low-fat diet.
The low-carb diet also helped protect muscles from weight loss.
Avoid processed foods and choose whole foods
Processed foods can be high in added salt, sugar, and trans fats. The three things make it difficult to lose weight.
Processed foods may also lack fiber, which is important in the prevention of type 2 diabetes and colon cancer.
Whenever possible, choose whole foods for your meals. For example, instead of eating white bread, choose whole grain bread. Instead of drinking juice, eat whole fruits.
Read nutrition labels carefully
When you go to the grocery, you need to compare and contrast brands for the same type of food products.
For example, some so-called “low fat” products can be high in carbs and added sugars than regular food products. You should pay attention to the information.
In addition, gravy, mayonnaise, sauces, and salad dressings often contain hidden fat and lots of calories. They may increase your fat and calorie intake and make you gain body weight.
Take exercise regularly
Research has shown that physical activity helps burn abdominal fat. This is because it reduces circulating levels of insulin.
The circulating levels of insulin can signal the body to hang on to fat and cause the liver to use up fatty acids, especially those nearby visceral fat deposits.
For most people, 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise nearly every day could help lose belly fat.
Do strength training
Research suggests that moderate strength training, such as pushups and weight lifting, combined with aerobic exercise can help build lean muscle mass.
More muscle mass can help you burn more calories each day.
It is more important to fit your clothes than reduce the scale number
This is because when you grow muscle mass and lose fat, your bathroom scale reading may not change much, but you can feel that your pants are looser.
It is better for your waistline to see how much belly fat you need to lose.
For women, the waistline should be less than 35 inches. For men, the number should be less than 40 inches.
Stay with people who care about health
Research shows that you are more likely to eat better and exercise if your friends and family members are doing the same.
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