D you want to find out how to lose belly fat fast? You’ve come to the right place
Belly fat also known as visceral fat is the fat stored around your belly. Not only does it look bad but it also puts your health at risk
This is because this type of fat behaves very much like an organ. It releases inflammatory substances that disrupt hormones. These are mostly hormones that control your appetite, mood, weight, and even brain function.
To determine if you have belly fat, measure around your waist circumference. Anything above 35-inches in women and 40-inches for men is considered belly fat.
However, the good news is that belly fat is very easy to get rid of once you understand it.
In this article, we explain the cause and how to lose belly fat fast.
- 1 What causes belly fat?
- 2 How to lose belly fat fast
- 2.1 Step 1: Start with knowledge and track what you’re eating
- 2.2 Step 2: Cut back on the added sugar
- 2.3 Step 3: Fill up your meals with protein
- 2.4 Step 4: Eat more fiber-rich foods
- 2.5 Step 5: Cut back on refined carbs
- 2.6 Step 6: Blast the fat with some exercise
- 2.7 Step 7: Intensify your workouts
- 2.8 Step 8: Learn how to manage your stress
- 3 Conclusion
What causes belly fat?
In order to understand how to lose belly fat we need to understand the common culprits that led to belly fat in the first place
1. Added sugar
Added sugar is often the first culprit when it comes to bulging belly fat. It has no nutritional value, sugar is half glucose and half fructose and fructose can only be metabolized by the liver.
When you consume a lot of added sugar the liver gets overwhelmed and turns the sugar into fat.
Over time, this leads to the accumulation of fats around the belly and the liver (1). In addition to belly fat, added sugar also affects your metabolism.
2. You’re stressed
Do you ever feel the urge to eat when you’re stressed? When you’re stressed, the stress hormone cortisol is released in very high amounts.
Cortisol then increases your appetite in response to the stress. This is why you will find yourself reaching for certain comfort foods. These comfort foods tend to either be sugar-filled foods or very high fat to satisfy the cravings.
Your body is literally using these cravings to make you feel better when you’re stressed.
3. You’re drinking too much alcohol
Yes, the dreaded beer belly is real and it’s all thanks to excessive alcohol consumption
When you consume excess alcohol, your body uses it as the primary source of fuel. This means it is burned first and anything else is stored as fats.
When you consider the excess calories from alcohol and food typically consumed as one drinks, it’s clear to see how the beer belly develops.
Various studies have confirmed the link between excessive alcohol consumption and increased belly fat(2)
4. You’ve got the wrong gut bacteria
A healthy gut has diverse bacteria that are very useful to general well being.
Not only do they produce hormones, digest foods, regulate the immune system, control appetite, regulate mood and extract nutrients.
However, according to recent studies, obese people tend to have less diverse bacteria in their gut (3).
And with gut bacteria playing such important functions that affect weight gain, it can make all the difference in losing belly fat and controlling appetite.
How to lose belly fat fast
Step 1: Start with knowledge and track what you’re eating
For an effective how to lose belly fat fast plan, you need to know where you’re starting at.
Most of us tend to overly underestimate or overestimate our diet. Our diet might look pretty healthy but we fail to account for the daily sodas, sugary breakfast cereals, and snacks.
To lose belly fat fast, start with knowledge based on facts of your current diet. You can use an app such as my fitness pal to document everything that you eat daily.
If not how about a food journal? If you’re committed you can count your macros calories and determining just how much less you need to eat to lose the belly fat
Step 2: Cut back on the added sugar
The harmful effects of added sugar on health cannot be overstated. It adds no nutritional value and can wreak havoc on your metabolism in the long run
For most people, the amount of added sugar they consume daily is often underestimated
According to the American heart association, women should consume no more than 100 calories or 6 teaspoons of sugar while men not more than 150 calories or 9 teaspoons per day (4).
Did you know just one can of 12-oz coke contains 140 calories from sugar?
The best way to cut back on added sugar is to limit sweetened fizzy drinks, sugar-filled desserts, and sugary breakfast cereals.
Read more: Ways to eat less sugar
Step 3: Fill up your meals with protein
Adding more protein to your diet is one of the most effective things to do on a how to lose belly fat plan.
There are several things that protein does that significantly boosts weight loss and blasts belly fat;
1. Make you feel full thus reducing appetite
2. To burn protein, your body uses up more calories hence boosting metabolism
3. You’ll end up eating fewer calories as protein increases satiety
4. Protein reduces cravings
Include protein-rich foods such as eggs, salmon, lean beef, chicken breasts, and chickpeas into your diet
Step 4: Eat more fiber-rich foods
Adding fiber-rich foods in your diet will help you lose belly fat fast in 2 ways;
1. Diversify your gut bacteria
We know that having a less diverse bacteria can cause belly fat. Soluble fiber present in fiber-rich foods acts as prebiotics or food for your gut bacteria.
2. Soluble fiber can help you lose belly fat
Soluble fiber present in fiber foods absorbs water to form a “gel” in your stomach.
This gel slows down food as it moves through your digestive system thus slowing down digestion and absorption of nutrients. This is what makes you feel full when you eat high-fiber foods and thus a reduced appetite.
Studies have confirmed that people who tend to include fiber in their daily diet have a lower risk of belly fat(5)
Include foods such as black beans, lima beans, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and avocados to add fiber to your diet.
Read more: 23 High-fiber Foods You Should Eat Daily
Step 5: Cut back on refined carbs
When you’re figuring how to lose belly fat fast, you have to cut back on carbs
Low-carb diets have proven to be very effective at weight loss. This is because when you’re limiting your carbs, your body is forced to burn fat for fuel
To burn belly fat fast, that’s the best-case scenario, your body is basically on fat-burning mode.
What you can do is avoid the added sugar and swap refined carbohydrates for whole-grain options for rice, pasta and everything else
If you want to do it fast, limit your carbs to 50-grams per day and watch the pounds drop off.
Step 6: Blast the fat with some exercise
Exercise should be on your list on how to lose belly fat fast.
With your diet in check, you can burn more fat by taking up some form of exercise. Jogging and running are one of the easiest ways to burn belly fat fast and anyone can do.
If you don’t like jogging, exercises such as burpees, mountain climbers, interval training are your best bet at burning that belly fat fast.
Read more: Easy belly fat workouts you can do any time
Step 7: Intensify your workouts
An effective how to lose belly fat plan should always include intense workouts for maximum results.
If you do opt to do jogging or running, you want to vary your intensity every day so that your body burns up as many calories as it can
If you do high-intensity interval training, you can lengthen your periods of exercise and shorten your breaks. The goal is to make you exercises as intense as possible every other day and not just exercise moderately.
Step 8: Learn how to manage your stress
For a successful how to lose weight plan, managing stress has to be a priority.
Your body’s response to stress is to induce cravings so that you can soothe yourself with food.
That’s why you always crave certain comfort food and not a whole meal when stressed. To beat this cycle, you need to find a way to manage stress better.
You can take up yoga, meditation or writing every time you feel stressed.
How to lose belly fat fast is a common question among many people. Belly fat has been linked to increased risk of diabetes and heart diseases.
Added sugar, drinking too much alcohol, stress and wrong gut bacteria are some of the contributing factors to developing a belly fat
To lose belly fat fast, you have to make changes to your diet by limiting carbs, adding protein and fiber. Take up exercises to burn more belly fat and vary your exercise intensity.
Lastly, you need to learn to manage stress as it also contributes to belly fat.