For most of us women, losing belly fat seems more like a dream than a reality. We try detoxes, ab workouts, and so much more just to see that stubborn belly fat and those love handles still taking up residence on our bodies.
It is frustrating and discouraging to say the least.
(Because of this, some of you may not believe that you can lose belly fat without exercise, but trust me it CAN be done! Read on and I will get to it in just a moment.)
In addition to making you feel bloated and uncomfortable in your clothes, belly fat is the most dangerous fat in your body. In fact, being normal weight with excess belly fat can be even more precarious than simply being obese.
Because this fat is located not to far from your heart, liver and other vital organs, it is not uncommon for health problems to arise as a result. Therefore, excess abdominal fat can be leading factors in heart disease, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and some cancer.
When people begin to lose sensitivity to insulin their body is not told to burn off the energy it should be. When insulin loses its strength, the body begins to send out more of the hormone, which only catapults the system into chaos.
Losing belly fat or those last few inches is definitely not an easy task and only gets more difficult with age. Even if you shed a few pounds, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will lose belly fat.
What is Belly Fat?
There are two main types of fat found on the belly.
Visceral fat: the hazardous internal belly fat under your abdominal muscles that build up around your major organs like your heart or liver.
Subcutaneous fat: This squishy fat lies just beneath the surface of your skin and can be found all throughout your body.
While subcutaneous fat is very much visible (seen in the fat the jiggles when you walk), visceral fat is internal and much more deadly.
If you simply have love handles, then rest assured that those are composed of fat near the surface of the skin. It’s the visceral fat that poses a threat your health. Too much of it can interfere with liver function and can alter hormonal communications between your vital organs.
What Causes Belly Fat?
There are a few factors that play a role in gaining belly fat. Some include:
When consumed in moderation alcohol can have some health benefits. For example, red wine can help lower your risk of heart attacks and strokes.
However, overconsumption of alcohol may lead to liver disease, chronic inflammation and other health issues.
Some studies even show that alcohol suppresses fat burning and the extra calories from alcohol are partially stored as belly fat.
If you’re trying to lose weight, you should limit your alcohol consumption to about 1 glass of wine a week.
2. Sugary Foods and Drinks
Living in such a processed world, it’s hard to avoid the sugar in our packaged goods. From cakes to candies and even “healthier” choices like frozen yogurt, sugar is in every corner.
Observational studies have shown that excess belly fat is a direct result of high sugar intake. One study even reported a decline in fat burning amongst individuals who maintained a high-fructose diet.
Stress is a major cause for weight gain in people and can bring both physical and emotional changes to a person.
When you’re stressed your body produces cortisol, the “stress hormone” to respond to that stress. Too much cortisol however can cause weight gain, particularly in your stomach region.
4. Low protein diets
Maintaining a high protein diet helps to increase metabolic rate and reduce calorie intake. Studies suggest that those who took in large amounts of protein were the least likely to have belly fat.
On the other hand, low protein intake can increase your appetite and make you gain unwanted belly fat.
How to Lose Belly Fat Without Exercising – 7 Proven Ways
When I began my fitness journey I had heard the phrase, “abs are made in the kitchen”.
I didn’t believe that this was true, but after seeing my dad shed 40 pounds without lifting a single weight or jumping on a treadmill, I knew that this could very well be the case. By eating the right foods, you could very well burn belly fat without lifting a single finger.
1. Eat more protein
Consuming more protein is one of the most effective long-term strategies to not only reduce your belly fat but also lose weight all together.
Protein reduces your appetite and hunger levels and thus, makes you feel more full with less food in your belly. It also helps you boost your metabolism and reduce your cravings.
Some good sources of protein include foods such as eggs, meat, fish, and some dairy products. Filling your plate up with the right protein and healthy veggies will quickly set you on track to losing weight.
If you have a hard time including protein into your diet, then I recommend a protein supplement, like whey protein, to boost your consumption. If not this, then try making a stir-fry with tofu for dinner.
2. Cut carbs
For many of us cutting carbs looks a little like the picture below; but in order to lose belly fat you need to do more than just slice bread or pizza in half. You actually have to remove the carbs from your diet (sad, I know).
As many of you probably already know: refined carbs are bad for you.
Reducing your carb intake and following a low carb diet is an immediate way to reduce belly fat as well as general body fat.
Studies have shown that low carb diets result in greater reduction in body mass and a loss of fat. Even if you just replace refined carbs (pasta, white bread, refined potato products, etc.) with unprocessed carbs you can decrease belly fat without exercising!
Tip: If you do wish to have carbs, it is best to eat them earlier in the day so your body has time to burn some calories throughout the day. However, focusing on a more protein filled diet will show you better results!
3. Soluble fiber
Studies have found that increasing your consumption of fiber-rich foods can significantly decrease your abdominal fat.
However, this doesn’t mean you can go crazy on fiber. Not all fiber is made the same.
There are two categories: insoluble and soluble fiber.
Soluble fiber is definitely where you want to be focusing your time. Eating more soluble fiber can help you lose belly fat and lower belly fat gain.
In addition to that, having about 10 grams of soluble fiber a day was proven to reduce lower belly fat without altering the amount of fat under the skin. This is great news for those of you looking to lose abdominal fat and not weight anywhere else on your body!
Soluble fiber can be found in a variety of plant-based foods. Some foods that are high in soluble fiber include flaxseeds, Brussels sprouts, legumes, and oatmeal.
So for quick results, make sure you start adding enough fiber into your daily diet, but not too much fiber! An excessive amount of fiber can lead to bloating. It’s much better to ease your way into it!
Tip: Women should aim for 21-25 grams of fiber per day.
4. Don’t eat sugar !!
Added sugar in any form is unhealthy.
Studies show that sugar has negative effects on metabolic health and can only be metabolized by the liver in very small amounts.
When you overindulge in refined sugar, the liver becomes overloaded with fructose, and turns it into fat in your body. In addition, this excess sugar and large amounts of fructose lead to increased belly fat.
Even worse than sugar found in food is sugar found in drinks. Sugar-sweetened drinks are basically empty calories that fuel your appetite and make you eat more than necessary.
If you are trying to reduce your belly fat one of the first steps you should take is completely removing sugary drinks, especially soda, from your diet.
A healthy alternative to these beverages are flavored detox waters that are infused with delicious fruits and herbs. Not only are detox drinks tasty, but they are a healthy way to fuel your body and even treat bloating.
5.Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar has been used as a health stimulant for hundreds and hundreds of years.
It’s health benefits span from improved skin and digestive health to reducing abdominal fat accumulation.
Apple cider vinegar’s many unique properties can be attributed to its main component: acetic acid.
According to animal research, acetic acid in apple cider vinegar leads to weight loss in several ways:
- Lowers blood sugar levels
- Reduces fat storage
- Improves metabolism
- Burns fat
- Suppresses appetite
Basically apple cider vinegar is the answer to every problem you’ve ever had. Okay, maybe not every problem but it sure comes darn close to it!
That’s why I suggest that starting right now, you indulge in about 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar on a daily basis!
Oh, and did I mention it helps decrease that very dangerous visceral fat your belly fat can have?
6.Spices (HOT HOT HOT)
But amongst these spices stands the cayenne pepper. Cayenne peppers, in particular, contain a substance called capsaicin that helps to boost your body’s metabolism by increasing your body’s heat production.
In addition to burning fat as heat, eating this pepper has been proven to reduce calorie intake. This will help immensely in losing weight all around.
Although we are made up of about 70% water, it seems as though our bodies just can’t get enough of that H2O. While other beverages often increase your waistline and lead to bloating, water is the one drink that will never ever let you down.
Drinking water has been proven to decrease your appetite, reduce cravings for sweets, and help you feel satisfied for longer periods of time.
By staying hydrated with water you are allowing your body to flush out any toxins within your body in a healthy way.
For some reason, I’ve always found it difficult to drink bottles of water each day. I just didn’t feel the need to drink. However, once I started drinking about 6 cups a day I immediately noticed my hair looked shinier and my stomach looked flatter.
So next time you have the choice between water or Mountain Dew, I suggest you save yourself the calories and pick your good ole pal water.
If you’re just starting your weight loss journey, try not to get discouraged. Everybody is different and everyone moves at a different pace. Don’t let the numbers on the scale throw you off because it is often more how you feel than the number that stares back at you.
Losing that unwanted belly fat doesn’t have to be a burden when you don’t have time to fit workouts into your days. Simply follow these 7 tips and you will undoubtedly see results within a week .