Loving our reflection begins with loving ourselves on the inside first, and that includes those pesky love handles. Beyond the physical effort, it takes to tone our bellies, like our reflection, burning belly fat is about complete wellness from the inside out. Diet, exercise, and even stress management are all important factors in order to see long-term results.
How to Lose Belly Fat
Unfortunately, our stomachs seem to be one of the most stubborn areas of the body when it comes to losing fat, and there’s a reason — it takes more than a workout. Science suggests that things like poor diet, alcohol consumption, stress, smoking, lack of sleep, and even genetics play a role. Don’t be discouraged. Because small adjustments can lead to big-time success, and you can lose that belly fat.
A strong core helps with posture, prevents injury, and even makes daily tasks suddenly seem easier — looking good on the beach is just a fringe benefit. Here are our top three helpful tips on how to burn belly fat while also supporting overall better quality health.
Step #1 Clean Eating
Cut Out Processed Foods
Have you ever eaten a hefty or overly processed meal only to feel sluggish immediately after? We’ve all been there when a scoop of ice cream turns into a pint, or fast food becomes a quick fix for dinner. If you’ve noticed some uncomfortable indigestion and bloating after consuming these foods, you’re not alone. Removing processed foods from our diet isn’t only important for losing belly fat, but really for overall health.
So, skip as many of those packaged and processed foods as you can, and stick to whole and natural food options — think fruits, veggies, whole grains, legumes, poultry, wild-caught fish, and healthy fats like avocados, nuts, and seeds.
Note — everyone has different dietary requirements and there’s no one-size-fits-all, so find the healthy foods that work best for your body!
Try Boosting Your Diet With Some Naturally Fat Burning Foods
Instead of processed foods, give your body a boost with some naturally fat burning foods such as green tea, cayenne pepper, fish, or coconut oil.
Step #2 Optimizing Your Wellness Routine
#1 Support Gut Health
Some people seem to shed pounds or barely put them on, while others require some extra dedication and focus. While we’d like to revert back to the role of genetics, research suggests that gut health may also play a role in not just our overall health but our weight too.
Some great gut-supporting tips include enjoying probiotic-rich foods like kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, reducing the intake of inflammatory foods, and drinking plenty of water.
RELATED: Here’s Why Gut Health May Be Affecting Your Stress Levels + 5 Things to do Today
#2 Get Enough Sleep
Can’t sleep? You could be signaling your body that it’s time to eat. Our sleep patterns say a lot about our eating habits, including an increased appetite and a decreased sense of fullness, and it can even dictate our craving for higher caloric foods.
Sleep better at night with a darker room, a regular sleep schedule, or try a before-bed meditation, like this Relaxing Sleep Meditation with DeAndre Sinette.
RELATED: Evening Ritual Dos and Don’ts For Better Sleep
#3 Reduce Stress
Stress is becoming increasingly harder to avoid in our world. And when we’re stressed, our cortisol levels, go up which can then leads to an increase in appetite. But stress is easily manageable with a meditation schedule, daily exercise, and even taking up a new hobby.
A healthy lifestyle leads to a happy one, and before you know it, it may become easier to lose belly fat.
RELATED: 7 Simple Wellness Habits to Practice Daily When Stressed
Step #3 Workouts to Lose Belly Fat
Workouts to get rid of belly fat don’t need to be boring, and our trainers prove it. In addition to your regular fitness routine, throw in one, or both of these exercises to optimize your results.
Losing Belly Fat Takes a Total Wellness Approach
Losing belly fat doesn’t happen with exercise or diet alone, it’s about balance and, more importantly, patience. Long term success takes commitment to eating clean, managing stress, adequate sleep, and a steady exercise routine. And while it does take time and consistency, losing belly fat is achievable.