Health Trends

Top tips on how to reduce belly fat

There are few things that are more annoying than stubborn belly fat, which can negatively affect your confidence and how you feel in your clothes. Belly fat is not only irritating, but having too much of it can affect your health as well. The type of fat around the belly, otherwise known as visceral fat, can also increase your risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. While there is no such thing as a miracle belly fat burner, there are several things you can do to reduce excess body fat. 

7 of the best ways to lose belly fat

1. Eat More Fiber

High fiber foods are one of the best foods that burn belly fat. Soluble fiber in particular may reduce belly fat – which is the type of fiber that absorbs water in our body. This makes you feel full and can prevent overeating. One study involving over 1,000 people showed those eating more soluble fiber tended to have less body fat. Include foods high in soluble fiber daily such as oats, beans, legumes, flax seeds, avocados, berries, and Brussels sprouts with each meal to ward off belly fat.

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2. Do More Cardio

Cardio exercises such as brisk walking, running, or swimming are easy exercises to lose body fat. In fact, they are probably some of the best exercises for love handles. Both moderate and high-intensity cardio can be effective at beating abdominal fat, but what’s most important is your consistency in doing it regularly. Engage in at least 60 minutes of cardio 5 times a week to help get rid of stomach fat.

3. Drink Green Tea

If you’re a tea drinker, it’s your lucky day. Green tea is one of the top foods that burn belly fat. Green tea contains a potent antioxidant called epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which is thought to be primarily responsible for its belly fat-torching properties. Combining a flat belly tea such as green tea with exercise may help you ward off that lower belly pooch. Enjoy 2-3 cups of green tea a day as part of a reduced belly fat diet, but make sure to limit added cream or sweeteners that can negate the health benefits.

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4. Manage Stress

If you have an unhealthy level of stress, you may have a stressed out belly. When the stress hormone cortisol is increased, it can enhance your appetite and drive belly fat storage. What’s perhaps even more frustrating is that those who have a larger waist to begin with tend to produce more cortisol in response to stress, leading to a vicious cycle of belly fat storage. Minimize the stress in your life by engaging in calming activities such as yoga, meditation, or journaling regularly.

5. Prioritize Protein

High protein foods are one of the best foods to eat to lose belly fat. You can use protein to lose body fat because it keeps you more full and helps you maintain muscle. And when you have more muscle, you appear leaner in your belly area! Research has specifically shown that those who eat more protein tend to have a flatter tummy. You don’t want to necessarily overdo it on protein, but you’ll want to make sure to meet your needs. Include a quality protein source with each meal such as fish, lean meat, beans, Greek yogurt, or eggs to lose belly fat.

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6. Get Enough Sleep

If you’re lacking in the sleep department, you’re at a higher risk of gaining belly fat. This is especially true in those who get less than 5 hours of shut-eye a night. A lack of sleep throws your hunger hormones out of whack, leading you to crave high-calorie foods for energy. These cravings are powerful, and typically don’t go away until you catch up on sleep. To achieve visceral fat loss, aim for at least 7 hours of sleep per night, and establish a relaxing bedtime routine such as reading or meditating. Struggling to catch those all-important Z’s? Try our Night-time Probiotic Supplement which supports gut health and promotes relaxation for a better night’s sleep.

7. Lift Weights

While many people think of cardio as being more important, weight lifting is actually one of the best belly fat burning exercises. A combination of weight training and cardio may lead to more belly fat loss than doing cardio alone. Lifting weights also helps maintain and build lean muscle, which can support a healthy metabolism. If you need to lose belly fat, incorporate weight training into your workout routine at least 2-3 times a week. While it isn’t as easy as it may always sound to burn your belly fat, there are ways to lose inches off your waistline.

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Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

Writer and expert

Melissa is an experienced Registered Dietitian-Nutritionist in private practice and expert Health Content Writer in the field of nutrition and wellness. She is always keeping up with the latest food and nutrition trends to keep her readers informed, breaking down the research into practical guidance. Through her writing, she helps educate and motivate readers to take charge of their health so they can feel their absolute best.

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