Has a sedentary lifestyle resulted in the accumulation of hard-to-shed belly fat? Have you tried numerous options to rid yourself of this stubborn fat that keeps you from flaunting a chic outfit? If yes, read on to find out everything you need to know about belly fat and better still, find out natural ways of losing fat around your belly.
Why is belly fat a problem?
Not only does belly fat limit your ability to move effortlessly and wear the clothes you like, but it also brings along an increased risk for the onset of numerous life-threatening health issues. These include
- Cardiovascular disease
- Blood pressure fluctuation (mostly high)
- Type-2 diabetes
- Breathing difficulty, among others.
The caveat that must not be missed while discussing visceral/subcutaneous belly fat is – Belly fat does not discriminate based on age or gender. The young are as affected as the elderly, and the men are as bothered by the issue as women.
In this post, let’s identify the leading causes that result in the accumulation of abdominal fat and thereafter, look at ways in which it can be shed. So, let’s get started.
What are the causes of belly fat?
If you desire to lose belly fat that seems impossible to shed, you will first have to identify the cause(s) for its accumulation. There are various reasons why fat accumulates in the abdominal region. Here a few common causes –
- Sedentary lifestyle: Those employed in the 9 to 5 corporate jobs are likely to sit for extended periods with limited options to move around. This lack of physical activity leads to fat accumulation in various body regions including the belly.
- Poor diet: Due to hectic daily schedule or perhaps, a disinterest to eat healthy/nourishing food can lead to disproportionate weight gain.
- Poor lifestyle choices: Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption are also among the common causes of belly fat.
- Insufficient sleep: Being deprived of a good night’s rest not just affects your normal functioning but will also stack up fat in the belly region.
- Less or no exercise: The daily grind is probably one of the main reasons why many are unable to work out regularly. Additionally, the inability to stick to a regular workout routine is yet another reason for belly fat accumulation.
- Genetics at work: Despite following a healthy diet and workout schedule, some continue to grapple with the belly fat problem. In such cases, it is worth checking if family members (close and extended family) have a tendency of belly fat accumulation. If yes, genetics may be a reason for weight gain.
- Other factors: If you find yourself in a position wherein all the above-mentioned factors are in the right place and yet you suffer from belly fat accumulation, you will have to consult a physician. Upon running a complete body workup, your physician will be able to identify and treat the underlying cause of weight gain.
So far, we have discussed the dangers that belly fat entails as well as the factors that result in this unwelcome fat accumulation. Now, let’s take a step forward and look at remedies that can free you from belly fat and the health issues it is associated with.
Ways to get rid of belly fat:
One search on the internet will get you a plethora of results that carry numerous options claiming to be the best fat shedding method. In order to make this process easy, we have listed below easy yet effective ways to lose belly fat.
- Consume a balanced diet:
One cannot emphasize more the importance of consuming a balanced/healthy diet. This not just helps boost your energy level, promote better sleep pattern, and reduce body fat, but also ensures that all your systems function properly.
If you are finding it difficult to consume a healthy diet daily, here are a few tips that can help you get started –
- Create a diet plan:
To formulate a plan that will help you build your health while burning the fat around your belly, you can follow the below-listed steps:
- Consult a nutritionist.
- Request your nutritionist to give you a daily diet plan.
- Follow the diet plan to the dot and journal your journey to better health.
- Allow yourself a cheat day wherein you can consume whatever you want to eat.
If you don’t want to consult a nutritionist, you can DIY by researching and planning a diet plan that suits you. Nobody knows you better than you, hence, DIY is also an option that you can seriously consider in your pursuit of losing belly fat.
In addition to following a healthy diet plan, consider setting aside time for a detox. Getting rid of the toxins present in your body is imperative to the success of your fat-burning efforts.
Here are a few simple ways you can detox your body:
- Drink plenty of water (you can also add a dash of lemon to make an enjoyable drink)
- Switch to green tea (instead of coffee)
- Consume fresh fruits and veggies (say no to canned food)
- Sleep well night after night
- Consume sufficient probiotics (such as yogurt and kombucha, among others)
- Consume a detox vegetarian diet for 3 to 5 days
Following the above-listed steps will prepare your body to work towards shedding the unwanted fat that long to shed.
2. Adopt a healthy lifestyle:
The next step on your journey to lose abdominal fat is to introspect and jot down all habits that are not pro-health. These habits include smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, overeating, excessive caffeine intake, among others. Once you identify these habits, you can look for ways to break the health-harming habit.
Breaking out of a health-harming habit:
The best way to remove such a habit from your routine is to replace it with a healthy alternative. For example, instead of consuming coffee (many cups a day), you can switch to consuming freshly squeezed fruit juice or green tea.
In like manner, strike out all habits on your list by replacing them with better alternatives, thereby slowly transitioning to living a healthier lifestyle.
3. Get sufficient sleep:
In addition to other efforts, getting a good night’s sleep can act as a catalyst for fat shedding. Although sleep on its own offers no help in losing weight, combining it with other efforts such as diet and exercise can yield you the results that you desire faster.
If you have difficulty sleeping through the night, here are a few tips that can help
- Be physically active during the day. If your work requires you to sit for an extended period of time, it is advisable for you to either go for a run or engage in other forms of exercise sometime during the day.
- Inculcate a habit to wake up (in the morning) and go to bed (at night) at a fixed time.
- Reduce or eliminate exposure to blue light before you go to bed. In other words, cut screen time after perhaps 7.00 PM. This may seem difficult but is necessary to sleep better. It can help if you make your bedroom a no-screen zone beyond the set time.
- Ensure that your bedroom is set in a manner that facilitates sleep. You can set the lighting, aroma, and the warmth of the room to this effect.
- Ensure that you eat your dinner by 8.00 PM and avoid eating anything after your last meal
Exercise is one of the critical aspects in your belly fat shedding journey. If you do all else and leave exercise out of your weight loss regime – you may shed some overall weight, but the belly fat will continue to be a problem. A good workout regime under the supervision of a professional trainer can help you burn your belly fat much faster.
Some exercises that you can practice at home to burn the stubborn belly fat include
- Mountain climber
- Kettlebell swing
- Machine ball slam
- Dumbell overhead lunge.
However, when you are practising these exercises, breath right, and ensure posture correctness. If you fail to practice them in the manner you are intended to, it can result in injury. To avoid this from setting you on the bench for rest (which is bound to increase your belly fat), it is best that you hire a trainer who can advise and direct you rightly.
5. Get rid of stress:
Stress is the root cause of many health issues and weight gain is one of them. Stress not just build up the fat reserve around your belly but also deteriorates your will to shed this harmful fat. If you are serious about burning abdominal fat then you will also have to work towards getting rid of stress.
Here are a few tips that can help you reduce your daily stress levels.
- Exercise – It may sound surprising, but when you exercise your body produces endorphins that are a sort of natural painkillers that promote sleep and decrease stress.
- Get sufficient sleep – Getting the right amount of sleep will let your body relax and rejuvenate, prepping it to face whatever is in store for the next day.
- Breathing exercises – This can do wonders especially when you are the helm of stress.
- Talk – Speaking to someone you trust about your botherations will give you the release that you need to abate stress.
- Time management – If you can manage your time effectively and efficiently on a daily basis, you will automatically be eliminating situations (in your control) that may trigger a stress bout.
The above mentioned 5 steps in the ways to lose belly fat section need to be practised in a way that is feasible to you. However, your efforts need to be consistent in order for you to attain the planned transformation.
What can go wrong in your belly fat shedding journey?
The main problem that is evident among those trying to lose the abdominal fat is – they give up. In other words, they fall out of the program they have coined for themselves either because they find the regime too much to keep at, or because they have lost the zeal to continue.
Other complications are also encountered when you try to chart your weight-loss journey on your own, such as – fatigue, muscle cramps, bladder leakage, and lightheadedness, among others.
However, there is a solution that can help you with whatever you face on your belly fat burning journey – Hire a personal trainer!
Why hire a personal trainer?
It is indeed true that you can lose weight on your own by following the many steps mentioned above. Nonetheless, why go through it alone when you have someone who can stand with every step of the way?
A weight-loss journey is far from easy and getting rid of the stubborn belly fat is quite hard. Hence, creating a support system that houses the right knowledge to guide as well as motivate you to keep at your regime – the road will be much easier to travel. Hiring a personal trainer and a nutritionist (even better if your trainer is also a nutrition expert), should be at the top of your list when you decide to get healthier.
Here are a few reasons for you to work with a personal trainer:
- Your trainer won’t let you give up:
Many drop out of weight loss programs that do not provide personal trainers. The reason for this is that there is no one to boost their tarnished zeal when they feel like giving up. Losing weight by working out and following the right diet is not an impossible task (although it may seem like it is). A trainer can replenish the fervour with words of motivation and success stories.
- Your trainer will ensure that you are consistent:
There will be days when you wake and feel like not working out. If you have a personal trainer on board, you will have to work out regardless of what you feel. Your trainer will ensure that you train consistently without taking unnecessary breaks. This way, you will stick to the decided plan and in the process, you will also develop a sense of discipline in areas that concern your health.
- Your trainer will not let you feel left out:
You may not know much about what diet you should follow or what exercises you need to practice to lose weight around your belly. If you hire a trainer, you won’t have to plan/worry about what regime is good for you. Your trainer will assess you on various parameters and will come up with a plan that will ensure the best results.
On the contrary, if you choose to do this on your own, you will have to go through a trial and error method of planning a regime which will take longer to yield results.
- Your trainer will boost your confidence:
It is a fact that a gym routine (cardio, full circuit workout, etc.) can be quite overwhelming. Your trainer will set a workout routine and will guide you as to how to go about it. You will not feel lost when you enter a gym if your trainer is by your side. You can also find trainers who are willing to help you work out in the comfort of your home.
- Your trainer will help you avoid injury:
Physical work out, if not done rightly, can result in injury. Your trainer will ensure that you exercise in a manner that will keep injuries at bay. Getting injured tends to create a set back that will keep you from reaching your target at the stipulated time. Hence, training with a professional by your side is a perk that you do not want to miss.
- Other reasons:
Health issues: If you have other health issues such as diabetes, thyroid, blood pressure fluctuations, and the like, it is advisable that you train with a professional. A trainer will know what kind of exercises to keep out of your routine and will also advise you about the diet you need to follow.
Trainer-cum-nutritionist: Many trainers are now equipped with nutrition certifications which means you can hire one professional who can serve as both trainer and nutritionist.
Burning belly fat can be quite a rollercoaster ride. It will have moments of highs and lows that you will have to go through in order to enjoy the wanted results – in this case, flaunt flat abs and wear whatever you desire.
Yes, you can embark on a weight loss regime that focuses on belly fat shedding on your own. However, the perks of working with an experienced trainer surpass the benefits of doing-it-yourself. It is advisable that consult a personal trainer and work with him/her by your side, in the location of your preference (home/gym) to witness the results that you have long waited for.