When people want to lose weight usually the first place they want to lose it from is around their tummy! This is most likely because generally this is where we naturally deposit most of our excess fat. But we’re here to tell you there is something you can do about it! Fourteen things in fact!
Fizzy Drinks and Fruit Juices
These are often more commonly referred to in nutrition as ‘liquid calories’. This basically refers to the high quantity of calories and sugar in both types of drink, which will make it harder to maintain a calorie deficit. Carbonated drinks containing a high quantity of sweetener can also be linked to bloating. Opt for healthier alternatives such as green tea or water where possible.
Alcohol is another form of ‘liquid calories’, which can make it harder to create a calorie deficit, but one that for some people will be less avoidable, particularly in social situations. However, binge drinking appears to be linked to a higher quantity of belly fat than drinking smaller doses more frequently, or if not at all. So, you don’t have to avoid alcohol entirely, just try to cut back on the binge drinking!
High refined sugar foods
High intake of added sugar is linked to many chronic diseases including heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some forms of cancer. There also appears to be a strong correlation between sugar intake and waist circumference. Try to be more aware of what you are eating, always check the label and look for added sugar on the ingredients list. You should aim to consume no more than 25 grams of added sugar per day as a woman and 37.5 grams as a man.
Red meat, while beneficial for being a source of vitamins and minerals, as well as a great source of protein, too much red meat can have negative health connotations, including increased risk of certain cancers and cardiovascular disease. It is also high in salt and ‘bad fat’ both of which are mentioned in this article as negatives in your quest for a flat tummy! Aim to consume leaner cuts of red meat and minimise your intake to no more than 1-2 portions per week.
Stress is linked to multiple chronic diseases and can also (at least in part) explain why people binge eat sometimes. Stress triggers cortisol release which is a hormone that when present in a high quantity in the body can cause increased appetite and fat storage. Try to minimise stress in your life where possible and try to add some stress relieving activities into your day, such as mindset practices like meditation or yoga.
You shouldn’t aim to remove salt entirely from your diet as the body does need some salt in order to function optimally. However, too much salt intake can cause water retention in the gut which can cause bloating. Try to avoid adding too much salt to food and avoid processed foods such as ready meals where possible as these are often high in salt. Try to not exceed any more than 2400 mg of sodium (salt) per day.
Consuming a high protein diet will keep you feeling fuller for longer as it is the most satiating macronutrient, it can also increase the calories you burn as it requires the most energy for your body to break it down of any macronutrient! If you are training alongside these dietary changes, a high protein diet will help maintain your muscle mass during fat loss which will enhance the toning effect of training! Good sources of protein include lean meat, chicken, fish, eggs, nuts and seeds. Our Slender Shakes are also a convenient method of increasing your protein intake, particularly post-workout!
Consuming a diet high in fibre will keep you feeling fuller by slowing down the passage of food through the digestive system, this will help you to create a calorie deficit, by enhancing satiation and reducing cravings. Good sources include oats, legumes, wholegrains, and nuts.
This refers to what are more commonly known as ‘good fats’. There is evidence to suggest that diets high in this type of fat, such as the Mediterranean Diet, are able to reduce the amount of fat accumulation around the stomach region. However, be careful not to consume too much as foods high in fat are often high in calories. Good sources of monounsaturated fat include olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds.
There is some evidence to suggest that antioxidants in green tea can help support metabolism and increase calories burned and may even have a direct impact on the reduction in the accumulation of tummy fat! Look Out For our NEW Slender Tea dropping soon!
You should be aiming to consume plenty of water during the day for a multitude of reasons! Some of which relate to your tummy. Drinking a large glass of water with or before a meal will help keep you feeling full and reduce the chance of overeating. It is also able to reduce bloating and constipation. Women are recommended to consume approximately 2.5 litres of water through fluid and food per day, and for men this value is approximately 3.5 litres. Try our New Slender You Slimming Tonics to help hydrate while you lose the weight!
In terms of fat loss, it is vital that you are in a calorie deficit to do so, this being consuming fewer calories than you use in a given day. You can use our ‘How to create a calorie deficit’ article to tailor your personal calorie deficit!
Exercise and Physical Activity
Physical activity is another behaviour that has a multitude of health benefits. This can be in the form of structured exercise in the gym, or just an effort to be more physically active while at work for example. This will help you to create a calorie deficit which will in turn support fat loss. Resistance exercise specifically will help with attenuating the loss of muscle mass often seen during weight loss, which will help with the toning process as well.
If you didn’t already have a good enough reason to love your bed, sufficient sleep is very important to fat loss! Many studies link insufficient sleep with weight gain and increased waist circumference. General recommended guidelines for most adults is 7-9 hours per night.
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