There are several strategies have been shown to be especially effective at reducing your waist size.
If you dream to get a flat stomach or belly, this article shows you the best ways to achieve it.
Here are 30 science-backed methods so let’s check them out:
- Reduce Calories, but Not Too Much
One popular approach is to reduce your daily consumption by 500–1,000 calories to expect to lose approximately 1–2 pounds (0.5–1 kg) per week.
Eating too few calories can cause a major decrease in your metabolic rate, or the number of calories you burn on a daily basis.
In one study, a group of people who ate 1,100 calories per day slowed their metabolic rate more than twice as much as those who consumed about 1,500 calories per day for four consecutive days. (source 1)
It is important that you don’t restrict your calorie intake too much or for too long.
- Consume More Fiber, Especially Soluble Fiber
Soluble fibers absorb large quantities of water and slow down the passing of food through the digestive tract.
This has been shown to delay stomach emptying, causing the stomach to expand and make you feel full. (source 2)
Furthermore, soluble fiber may decrease the number of calories your body is able to absorb from food. (source 3)
- Take Probiotics
Probiotics are live bacteria that are suggested to play a big role in weight loss and weight maintenance. (source 4).
Overweight and obese people have been shown to have a different composition of gut bacteria than normal-weight people, which may influence weight gain and fat distribution (source 5).
A regular consumption of probiotics may shift the balance towards beneficial gut flora, reducing the risk of weight gain and fat accumulation in your abdominal cavity.
Some strains of probiotics have been shown to be particularly effective at reducing belly fat. These include:
- Lactobacillus fermentum
- Lactobacillus amylovorus
- Lactobacillus gasseri
Probiotic foods include some types of yogurt, kefir, tempeh, kimchi and pickles.
- Do Some Cardio
Doing cardio, or aerobic exercise, is an excellent way to burn calories and improve overall health.
Additionally, studies have shown that it is very effective at strengthening your midsection and reducing your waistline (source 6).
Examples of cardio include running, brisk walking, biking and rowing.
Studies usually recommend doing 150–300 minutes of moderate-to-high-intensity aerobic exercise weekly, which translates to roughly 20–40 minutes per day (source 7).
- Drink Protein Shakes
Protein shakes are an easy way to add extra protein to your diet.
Getting enough protein in your diet can boost your metabolism, reduce your appetite and assist with fat loss, especially from your midsection (source 8).
Furthermore, studies have suggested that adding protein shakes to your weight loss diet may be especially effective at reducing your waist circumference (source 9).
- Eat Foods Rich in Monounsaturated Fatty Acids
Monounsaturated fatty acids are liquid at room temperature and usually categorized among the «good fats.»
Studies show that diets high in monounsaturated fatty acids may prevent the accumulation of tummy fat, the most dangerous type of fat (source 10).
The Mediterranean diet is an example of a diet that is high in monounsaturated fatty acids, and it has been linked to many health benefits, including a reduced risk of central obesity (source 11).
Foods high in monounsaturated fatty acids include olive oil, avocados, nuts and seeds.
- Limit Your consumption of Carbs, Especially Refined Carbs
Limiting your carb intake has been shown to have powerful health benefits, especially for weight loss (source 12).
More specifically, studies show that low-carb diets target the fat that lodges around your organs and makes your waistline expand (source 13).
Some studies also suggest that you can significantly improve your metabolic health and reduce your waistline by simply replacing refined carbs with unprocessed, whole food carbs (source 14).
An effective diet based in consuming less carb and high in fat is keto diet that is capable to lose 40 pounds in less than a month.
- Do Resistance Training
Losing muscle mass is a common side effect of dieting.
This can be detrimental to your metabolic rate, as losing muscle decreases the number of calories you burn on a daily basis (source 15).
Doing resistance exercises regularly may prevent this loss of muscle mass and, in turn, help you maintain or improve your metabolic rate.
Moreover, resistance training may be especially effective at tightening your midsection and reducing your waist size (source 16).
In fact, combining resistance training with aerobic exercise seems to be the most effective for slimming your waistline.
- Do Exercises Standing Instead of Sitting
You activate more muscles to maintain balance and hold up your weight. Therefore, you’ll spend more energy working out (source 17).
A study comparing the effects of standing and sitting exercises showed that some standing exercises increased muscle activation by 7–25%, compared to sitting (source 18).
- Add Apple Cider Vinegar to Your Diet
Several animal studies have suggested that Apple Cider Vinegar may reduce body fat accumulation (source 19).
- Walk at Least 30 Minutes Each Day
A combination of exercise and diet is probably the most effective way to achieve weight loss and improve your overall health.
Also, studies have shown that you don’t need to exercise vigorously to reap health benefits.
In fact, walking for 30–40 minutes (about 7,500 steps) per day is a significant reduction of belly fat (source 20).
- Avoid Liquid Calories
Sugary soda, fruit juices and energy drinks are generally loaded with sugar and liquid calories.
It is also very easy to drink large quantities at a time, resulting in an abundance of empty calories.
It is important that you pay attention how much calories stores any liquid so that you can control it.
One study showed that each daily serving of a sugar-sweetened beverage increased the risk of obesity in 60% of children (source 21).
- Eat Whole, Single-Ingredient Foods
The single best dietary advice you can give someone is to base their diet around eating more whole, single-ingredient foods.
Whole foods are loaded with nutrients, fiber, water, vitamins and minerals.
Eating grains, nuts, legumes, fruits, vegetables, dairy, fish and unprocessed meat is healthy.
- Drink Water
First, it may help with weight loss by temporarily increasing your metabolic rate.
Second, drinking water before meals can make you feel fuller, so you’ll ultimately eat fewer calories.
Third, it may help relieve constipation and reduce belly bloating.
- Practice Mindful Eating
Mindful eating is a technique that helps you recognize and cope with your emotions and physical sensations regarding food and hunger (source 22).
It involves slowing down, eating without distraction, focusing on your physical hunger cues and eating only until you feel full.
Most studies agree that mindful eating helps you lose weight by changing your eating behavior and reducing stress-related behavior, such as stress eating and binge eating.
- Avoid Swallowing Air and Gases
Avoid drinking soda because the bubbles in it contain carbon dioxide, which is released from the liquid in your stomach. This may cause stomach distension or bloating.
This can also happen when you chew gum, drink through a straw or talk while eating.
We recommend eating in silence.
- Do High-Intensity Training
One popular way to do high-intensity training is to perform intervals of very intense activity, such as sprinting, rowing or jumping, with short breaks in between.
This way of exercising makes your body burn more fat and increases your metabolic rate, even long after you’ve finished your workout.
this type of exercise takes up way less of your time than other types of exercise, as it usually can be done in 10–20 minutes.
- Reduce Your Stress Levels
Stress and anxiety are very common, and most people experience them at some point in their lives.
stress triggers the body to produce cortisol, a stress hormone. It has been known to increase appetite and lead specifically to belly fat storage (source 23).
Try to reduce your stress level by practicing activities such as yoga or meditation.
- Eat More Protein
Protein is the most important nutrient when it comes to weight loss.
Your body burns more calories digesting protein than fat or carbs. Therefore, a high-protein diet may account for an extra 80–100 burned calories per day (source 24).
High-protein diets also reduce your appetite, make you feel full and help you retain your muscle mass during weight loss.
Studies have observed that people who eat more protein have slimmer waistlines than those with lower protein intakes.
- Track Your Food consumption
There are several ways to do this, but the most popular and effective ones are counting calories, keeping a food diary and taking pictures of your food.
You don’t have to do this all the time, but it may be good to track your intake for a few days in a row every few weeks. This will make you more aware of your calorie intake and allow you to adjust your weight loss diet if needed.
- Eat Eggs
Eggs are healthy, high in protein and have a few unique weight loss properties.
An egg breakfast has been shown to significantly reduce calorie intake for the next 24 hours, automatically and without effort (source 25).
- Get Enough Sleep
Getting a sufficient amount of good sleep is very important for weight loss.
Studies have repeatedly shown sleeping less than five hours a night for adults and less than 10 hours for children is linked to an increased risk of weight gain (source 26).
- Try Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is an eating method in which you rotate between eating and fasting for specific amounts of time.
The most popular intermittent fasting approaches are doing a 24-hour fast two to four times per week, where you restrict your eating window to eight hours each day, often between lunch and dinner.
Generally, this makes you eat fewer calories overall without having to consciously think about it.
- Eat Fatty Fish Every Week or Take Fish Oil
It is generally recommended to eat fatty fish once or twice per week.
Fatty fish is very healthy and rich in essential long-chain omega-3 fatty acids and good-quality protein (source 27).
Protein has been shown to help with weight loss, and studies have suggested that omega-3 fatty acids may also help reduce the accumulation of fat in the liver and abdominal cavity.
- Limit Your Intake of Added Sugar
As mentioned above, avoid consuming sugar because it causes common diseases in society today, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes and fatty liver disease (source 28).
Studies have shown a direct link between high intake of added sugar and increased waist size, especially in people who drink sugar-sweetened beverages (source 29).
- Replace Some Fat With Coconut Oil
Coconut oil contains a unique combination of fatty acids. It is one of a few foods that is rich in medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs).
Studies have shown that replacing some dietary fat with MCTs may increase energy expenditure and make you feel fuller (source 30).
Also, coconut oil has been shown to more effectively reduce waist size than other types of fat.
- Strengthen Your Core
By doing regular basic exercises, you strengthen and add mass to your abdominal muscles, which may prevent back aches that result from weak posture.
A strong core will also improve your posture and prop up your spine, allowing you to appear taller and more confident.
Also, core exercises help you strengthen the muscles that ultimately hold in your belly, making you appear thiner.
- Drink (Unsweetened) Coffee or Green Tea
Drinking tea or taking green tea extract supplements has been shown to increase fat burning up to 17% and calorie expenditure by 4% (source 31).
Studies in animals and humans have shown that drinking coffee and tea may reduce the risk of accumulating belly fat, helping you reduce your waist size (source 32).
- Don’t Drink Too Much Alcohol
We know that doing this is uncomfortable for you but it is necessary to avoid increasing your belly size.
Alcohol contains seven calories for each gram, which partly explains why alcoholic drinks tend to be loaded with liquid calories.
Heavy drinking is linked to increased weight gain, especially around your midsection (source 33).
- Do Extra Activity Into Your Day
This involves walking, standing, fidgeting, moving around and basically everything other than exercise training, sleeping and eating.
Studies have shown that just standing, fidgeting or walking around can increase the calories you burn by five- to six-fold, compared to sitting still (source 34).
If you prefer to exercise in home try these 10 at-home exercises to finally lose belly fat once and for all! No leaving your house, no special equipment needed, and no excuses!
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