With the summer just around the corner, many of us are starting to worry about getting in shape for our holiday, or just that next trip to the beach.
Well, fear not. With the following steps you can take a big step to achieving your goal of losing weight and to reduce belly fat.
#1: Cut back on your sugar intake
This does not necessarily mean ‘added’ sugar either. You should be aware of what sugar content your food contains, which means you need to pay more attention to those food labels.
Processed food in particular as they contain processed sugar like high fructose corn syrup that can cause metabolic dysfunction, which causes insulin resistance and fat accumulation.
You need to be careful with these sugars as they are often named differently, this is why it is recommended to cut back on the amount of processed foods you eat. Instead try and replace them with organic alternatives if possible.
#2: Increase your intake of healthy fats
Healthy fats such as those found in avocados, coconut oil and nuts can help to reduce body fat.
These monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) can also help those with an insulin resistance too.
#3: Try intermittent fasting
If you want to essentially ‘reboot’ your system then the occasional fast will help.
Doing so will enable your body to start using fat as its primary fuel, rather than using sugar as it does currently, which only causes sugar highs and subsequent lows that cause foods and sugar cravings.
#4: Reestablish a healthy gut flora
The bacteria found in your stomach can affect your appetite, so you need to think about what you are eating, as this is what causes the bacteria to grow.
Processed foods, pasteurisation and sterilisation can all have a negative effect on the bacteria found in your gut, which can cause inflammation, insulin resistance and weight gain, so if possible you should try to limit your intake of these kinds of foods.
Try eating unprocessed, cultured or fermented foods instead.
#5: Exercise at 100%
One of the key components of fat loss is giving 100% in the gym.
It is pointless spending your time simply going through the motions, not only will you never see the results you crave but you are also wasting your time and hard-earned money.
My suggestion for fat burning would be to start lifting weights. If you are female this may seem like a strange suggestion, but I can assure you that you will soon thank me for suggesting it.
When you lift weights you will not only be giving yourself a good workout, but will also be building lean muscle too.
This muscle not only looks better than fat but will also aid your fat burning efforts too.
It has been shown time and again that even at rest muscle will burn more calories than fat.
You will also find that you will continue to burn calories up to 24 hours after you complete a workout that involves weights, whereas if you simply stuck to a cardio workout your calorie burning would halt the moment you stopped working out.
#6: Avoid the following
There are certain things that you need to avoid if your goal is to reduce body fat. Here are some of the more common things you should try to avoid:
- A lack of exercise
- Magnesium deficiency
- Too many soft drinks
- Too much alcohol
While a lack of exercise and too many soft drinks or alcohol are issues that are easily solved you may think that a magnesium deficiency and stress are harder to solve.
However, there are certainly ways that you can achieve optimal levels of magnesium; for example you could eat seaweed or some leafy green vegetables like spinach.
Magnesium can also be found in certain types of beans, nuts and seeds, as well as in avocados.
As for stress, there are ways to relieve this too. For instance you could try meditation or yoga, even a hot bath or a book could take your mind off whatever is causing the stress.
Hopefully these few steps can help to reduce your belly fat ready for summer, if you start following these tips then before long your goal will be in sight.