Slimming down in the tummy can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. Unfortunately, spot reduction of body fat does not work well, and the body saves abdominal fat. Lowering your body fat percentage is the best way to slim down this trouble area, but doing so takes a commitment to changing your diet and exercise habits.
Do resistance-training workouts three to five days a week. Many people can benefit from this form of training, which improves bone density, builds muscle and burns fat. Not only do you burn calories while you weight-train, you also elevate your metabolic rate for up to 48 hours afterward. Essentially, if you work out every other day (Monday, Wednesday and Friday), you will be burning extra fat all week long.
Perform cardiovascular workouts for 30 minutes up to twice a day, five or six days a week. The amount of cardio needed depends on your current body composition, goals and level of fitness. Most people can maintain their body weight with three 30 minutes cardio sessions a week. If you have more to lose, then simply add more cardio. The effect on the body is cumulative, so you can do one long session or several shorter ones throughout the day.
Eat more frequent meals. Aim for getting three main meals, such as breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as two or three protein-rich snacks. Protein has a thermic effect on the body, meaning it takes more energy to digest than carbohydrates and fats, and therefore burns more calories. For this reason, you should have a 15 to 30 g serving of protein with each meal or snack.
Eat 40 percent carbohydrates, 30 percent protein and 30 percent healthy fat at each meal or snack. “The Fat Burning Bible” recommends this ratio as the best for burning fat. Choose lean proteins such as turkey, chicken and fish and low-glycemic carbs such as oatmeal, brown rice or sweet potatoes. Remember not to neglect healthy fats, such as olive oil, omega-3 (from flax or fish oil), avocados and nuts and seeds. These fats do not store readily in the body and actually help you lose weight faster.
Eat one “cheat” meal a week. Caloric restriction causes the body to decrease metabolic rate. Starvation mode can keep you alive during times when food is scarce, but it can also keep a layer of fat around your waist. Eat whatever you want at one meal a week to prevent this.
About this Author
Andrew Bennett enjoys exploring health and fitness through his personal workouts, as well as researching the latest about the subject. As a natural body builder, Bennett enjoys the ongoing pursuit of health and wellness in all aspects of life. He writes articles, blogs, copy, and even award-winning screenplays.