Losing the spare tire around your waist may not only help you look better, it also can make you feel better. Excessive abdominal fat can increase your risk of developing serious diseases and conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and even breast and colon cancer. While there’s no way to spot reduce the fat on your belly, with hard work and discipline you can reduce the amount of fat in your body, including the fat covering your abs, relatively quickly.
Engaging in regular exercise is key to burning fat, abdominal or otherwise. You should engage in 30 to 60 consecutive minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise daily. Such exercises may include walking, jogging, biking, stair climbing or using elliptical machines. In addition, you should include resistance training in your routine. Lifting weights burns fat as you exercise but also increases your metabolism, which help the body to continue burning calories well after your workout has ended.
Eat the Right Foods
To lose belly fat quickly you have to create a calorie deficit. Cut between 500 and 1000 calories daily to lose one to two pounds a week. Eat a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and high-fiber foods. These foods have the benefit of being both rich in vitamins and minerals and slow to digest, which keeps you feeling full for longer periods. You may also want to include small amounts of monounsaturated fats in every meal. According to the book “The Flat Belly Diet” by Liz Vaccariello and Cynthia Sass, consuming small portions of monounsaturated fats, such as avocados, olives, flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, nuts and dark chocolate, can help reduce abdominal fat.
Control Your Portions
Your belly won’t shrink if you don’t limit the size of the portions you eat. The American Dietetic Association recommends using your plate as a guide. Designate half of your plate for vegetables, a quarter for grains and a quarter for lean meat or protein. You can also use psychological tricks to help keep your eating under control. For example, serve food on individual plates rather than leaving the serving dishes on the table. Keeping the serving dishes in the kitchen or otherwise out of view can discourage you from taking second or third helpings.
Water is the perfect beverage when trying to lose belly fat. Water has no calories, helps the body to function efficiently and can suppress your appetite. Moreover, a 2009 study led by Dr. Brenda Davy at Virginia Tech University showed that people who drank two glasses of water 20 to 30 minutes before every meal lost weight more quickly and in more significant amounts than those who didn't.