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Five Simple Ways To Shrink Your Stomach

weightloss

Did you know that abdominal fat is the most dangerous type of fat stored in the body? Excess stomach fat predisposes people to various medical conditions such as Cancer, High Blood Pressure and Diabetes- to mention just a few. Indeed, a large waistline can make clothes shopping a nightmare and can ruin your confidence. While the government have made great efforts in tackling obesity in Ireland, it still remains a big concern. The World Health Organisation has forecasted that Ireland is on course to be the fattest country in Europe by 2030.

Here’s five tips that will help you shed stomach fat in an easy yet effective manner.

1. Mindset
Having the right mindset will set you on the right track to success. A positive attitude is vital in assisting your weight loss plan. If you don’t believe you can lose weight, you never will.
Stay motivated and focused by setting realistic achievable goals and work hard to achieve them. Visualise your toned trim tummy as a motivational factor in shedding the pounds.
Monitor and re-evaluate progress regularly by notebook keeping. Don’t forget to reward yourself and have fun on your track to slimming down.

2. Diet

Diet plays a crucial role in losing stomach weight. Forget most diets as they usually don’t have lasting results. You don’t need to go to a weight consultant. Small changes to your diet can make a huge difference. You need to adjust your diet gradually by doing the following:

Reduce sugar

As a nation, we are consuming way too much sugar. Sugar is a bad carbohydrate found in most food and drink. Excess sugar is stored as fat in the stomach. Limit fizzy drinks and alcohol as they are fuelled with sugar. You can gradually cut down on sugar by only having biscuits, pastries and desserts as occasional treats. Reduce sugar slowly from your tea/ coffee/ breakfast cereal. Watch out for labels on food such as sucrose, glucose, fructose and lactose as they are all sugars.

Reduce Salt

Sodium is required in small quantities in the diet to regulate fluids in the body. Salt is found in all food so therefore there is no need to add salt to food. Excess salt in your diet can lead to water retention. When you reduce your salt intake to combat water retention, you will lose weight.

Increase Water

Drinking eight glasses of water a day is pivotal for healthy body functioning. Water aids digestion which gives you a fuller feeling. It boosts your metabolism. Often when people are dehydrated, they mix thirst for hunger. Therefore they consume more and gain fat. If you are dehydrated, the colour of your urine will be dark yellow. Certain medications have adverse side effects such as weight gain/ water retention. Getting adequate water requirements will help beat this.

Increase Calcium

Research has showed that calcium helps weight loss. It is known to suppress calcitrol hormone which is responsible for fat storage. Those who avoid calcium are more prone to abdominal fat. Vitamin A, D and magnesium aid the absorption of calcium.

3. Avoid/ Beat Stress

People who are stressed release more cortisol . Cortisol is a hormone that regulates body processes including the metabolism. High cortisol levels lead to sugar cravings and stomach fat. People often have poor coping mechanisms and resort to comfort eating. Dealing properly with stress involves engaging in relaxation techniques such as mediation, walking or reading. Reaching for the biscuit tin is not the answer.

4. Exercise

The World Health Organisation recommends that healthy adults aged 18 to 64 should do 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity weekly. Individuals who have sedentary lifestyles or who have medical conditions should visit their GP first before exercising. Cardio exercise is the main exercise that targets the midsection area. It also aids your overall fat loss. There is no need to join expensive gyms. You just need runners, sports gear and an exercise mat.

Cardio exercises include running, swimming and cycling.

5. Sleep

We all know that sleep is very important for healthy body functioning. Not getting 8 hours sleep nightly can affect your skin, concentration levels and mood. Insufficient sleep can affect hormones responsible for the body deciding when to eat. Inadequate sleep can raise blood sugar levels .Therefore you will see the pounds go up on the weighing scale.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Petr Kratochvil

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