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Does a Girdle Help You Slim Down Your Waist?

author image Melissa McNamara
Melissa McNamara is a certified personal trainer who holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and communication studies from the University of Iowa. She writes for various health and fitness publications while working toward a Bachelor of Science in nursing.
Does a Girdle Help You Slim Down Your Waist?
A woman adjusting the laces on a girdle. Photo Credit robertprzybysz/iStock/Getty Images

Girdles are undergarments that can temporarily improve the appearance of your waist. A girdle cannot change your body mass index and waist circumference. Permanent changes to your overall lifestyle are essential for a slim waist.


Girdles can be worn under your clothes to give you a slimmer appearance, but they do not actually slim your waist. The girdle merely presses and redistributes fat and skin around your abdomen. You may appear to have an hourglass figure while wearing the girdle, but as soon as you remove the undergarment, the fat will return to your waist. Some girdles can shrink the appearance of your waist up to five inches. Instead of relying on undergarments to help your appearance, a healthy diet and increased physical activity can actually remove excess fat from your midsection.


Do not rely on fad diets that lack nutrients, promote starvation or rely on supplements. Even if the diet's backers guarantee quick results, your body is likely to overcompensate for the lost calories and nutrition by consuming more food than required. You will gain the weight back and will be back to relying on your girdle to improve your figure. Balancing calories is the key to weight loss. There are about 3,500 calories in one pound of fat, so you need to cut 500 calories from your daily diet in order to lose one pound per week. The easiest way to cut calories is by replacing high calorie foods with low calorie alternatives and cutting your portion sizes. Your diet should mainly consist of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats. By eating healthy, you will notice you no longer need your girdle to see results.

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Physical Activity

Increased physical activity in combination with a healthy diet will help you lose even more weight on your waist. In order to lose weight, you should aim for 150 to 250 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week. You will notice the greatest amount of weight loss if you increase your physical activity to more than 250 minutes and perform exercises at a vigorous intensity. You can continue to wear the girdle if you’re self-conscious of your weight during the weight-loss process, but wearing the girdle while doing physical activity will not encourage weight loss to your waist.


Excess body fat in the belly region increases your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia and some cancers. If you rely on a girdle to slim your waist, you’re still at risk for these diseases, which can result in a premature death. If you’re having difficulties losing weight after decreasing your calories and increasing your physical activity, consult your doctor and a personal trainer.

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