Even if you’ve never had a flat stomach, it’s possible to achieve this goal. Stomach fat occurs when your body is consuming too much energy. The result is weight gain all over the body, including your midsection. If you want to lose belly fat and keep it off for good, adopt healthy lifestyle changes to burn calories and fat.
Video of the Day
Regular cardio sessions will help you burn fat. Healthy adults need at least two hours and 30 minutes of moderate cardio activity weekly, recommends the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Moderate activity includes exercises such as walking, riding your bike on level ground and participating in water aerobics. Once your body gets stronger, increase your fat burning with vigorous activity. You need only one hour and 15 minutes of this type of activity weekly, rather than two hours and 30 minutes weekly. Jogging, jumping jacks and rollerblading are forms of vigorous activity. Discuss the best activity level for your situation with your doctor.
High calorie consumption is a common reason for weight gain all over the body, including the midsection. Set a healthy weight loss goal of 1 to 2 lbs. weekly. For this amount of weight loss, you need to shed 500 to 1,000 calories daily. This is because a pound of fat equals 3,500 calories. However, don’t cut calories too much. Men need a minimum of 1,500 daily calories and women shouldn’t drop below 1,200 daily calories, according to MedlinePlus.
Some foods, such as salmon, have a positive impact on your metabolism. Salmon contains high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which improves your metabolism, according to "Fitness" magazine. Also, boost your intake of apples. Eating as little as an apple a day assists with weight loss all over the body, according to "Fitness" magazine. Consuming 25 g of soy protein daily might also aid with belly fat loss. Select sources from whole soybeans, such as soy milk, soy yogurt and edamame.
Plan at least two strength training sessions weekly, lasting 20 to 30 minutes. Tone the sides of your midsection with the "squat with twist" exercise. Start out in a standing position. Extend both arms in front of your body, to shoulder height. Lower your body into a squat and twist to your left side. Return to center and repeat eight to 12 repetitions on each side of the body. Another effective exercise is the pelvic tilt. Start out lying on your exercise mat. Bend your knees and contract your stomach muscles. Lift your pelvis off the ground and hold the contraction for 10 seconds. Release and repeat 10 times.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- "Fitness" Magazine; Top 10 Abs Exercises; Lexi Walters; May 2008
- MayoClinic.com: Belly Fat in Women
- MayoClinic.com: Exercise for Weight Loss
- MedlinePlus: Weight Loss Tips
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Physical Activity for Everyone
- "Fitness" Magazine: The 10 Best Foods for Flat Abs
- MayoClinic.com: Healthy Weight Pyramid Tool