There many crazy posts, blogs and products claiming to give you a flat tummy with either one ab workout, eating a certain food or worse still, just drinking a cup of tea. Well, let me tell you as a Trainer with over 25 years’ experience I can assure that none of those work – because if they did, we would all be showing off our flat tummies.
The good news is yes, we can reduce belly fat, and with my approach not only do you reduce belly fat, but you also get super fit and healthy at the same time. Below are my 6 top tips to help get rid of tummy fat.
Tip 1 Re-setting your metabolism
This means your naturally calorie burn may have started to slow down (this can happen after the age of 25)and therefore we need to increase it back up again – so we do this by doing HIIT training – this is simply shorter workouts where you push yourself to the max for 20 seconds then reduce the intensity, the good news is these workouts can just be between 4-7 minutes long and are suitable for everyone. What happens is these types of workouts produce an effect known as EPOC (excess post oxygen consumption) and it is this that is the clever bit, because now you will have raised the number of calories your body is burning for the next 10 hours, and this on average can add up to around an extra 350 calories.
Tip 2 Increasing your active muscle tissue
Start doing a few body weight exercises even things like squats and lunges will help activate more active muscles tissues which helps your body burn fat faster.
Tip 3 Get to bed before 11pm
Believe it or not having 7 hours of good quality sleep is a great way to help reduce excess tummy fat, this is because sleep helps to control your hormones, and by having less than 7 hours your hormones can tend to be all over the place and get confused with feeling tired to being hungry which is why we can crave more carb rich food after a bad night’s sleep
Tip 4 Tightening your core muscles
The stronger your core is the better your body functions, and this helps with all activities as the stronger your core is the better you will perform them. Even if just sitting at a desk try and do some core strengthening exercise, this will help to stop you slouching and causing that lower tummy pouch.
Tip 5 Sculpting your abdominal muscles and waist
So many people get this wrong and just do the plank and sit ups, but this means you only engage the muscles through one range of motion known as sagittal (this simply means moving forwards) whereas the abdominal muscles need to be engaged through all 3 ranges (the other two are frontal and transverse). By doing this you will then be working your ab muscles to the max. The more toned these muscles are the more they will help to reduce the excess belly fat and you are likely to achieve the desired results quicker too.
Tip 6 Eating a clean diet (meaning cutting down on sugar)
Cutting down on sugar can be a quick way to see that ab fat melt away and those toned abdominal muscles start shining through. It is also important to avoid foods that make you bloated and don’t be fooled by some healthy foods as with anything, too much of a good thing is never a good thing.
I always say to all my clients when they ask how to get a flat tummy or a flat belly, that to get your best abdominal muscles you need to focus on 3 things: exercise, toning, and the biggest player of all, what you eat.
So instead of just thinking of a flat belly diet – focus on these foods, as they will help to get rid of excess belly fat and lose the belly bloat, add them to your weekly shopping list, as they are some of the best foods to help you reduce belly fat.
EGGS: Boiled, smashed, poached – however you have them, eggs truly are an excellent choice to have in your diet when it comes to banishing belly fat. The reason being that they have an incredibly low glycaemic index and are very filling.
BERRIES: Berries are a must, and choose red or blue with your berries, as the chemicals in charge of giving these fruits their colours are called “anthocyanins,” and research has shown these can help burn abdominal fat.
DARK CHOCOLATE (yes you read that right): Believe it or not this, which in my eyes is one of the wonders of the world as I love chocolate, can help reduce belly fat, this is because it helps to stabilise our blood sugar, which in turn helps with controlling our appetite and reducing cravings.
ALMONDS: Let’s go nuts about almonds, as they help to stabilize blood sugars, which helps prevent cravings that can lead to overeating and weight gain.
APPLES: An apple a day helps to keep the belly fat away, and this is because they are high in fibre and they are also high in water, which helps you feel full.
YOGHURT: Whether you go Greek or just low-fat, yogurt helps keep your digestive system healthy and prevents bloating.
SALMON: Let’s talk fish. Especially salmon, tuna, or mackerel, as all these are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. These healthy fats help promote fat-burning by making your metabolism more efficient.
TOMATOES: These can help reduce water retention in the body, and the magic of these fruits is that they also help with reversing leptin resistance. Leptin is a type of protein which helps to control the appetite and metabolic rate, so our bodies rely on it to shed those extra pounds.
OATS: Why not copy goldilocks and choose porridge for your breakfast if you want a flat tummy, the oats will give you energy and fuel your metabolism and help reduce hunger throughout your day.
RICE: Let’s add one more that is a real winner and that is brown rice, which is a super friendly flat-tummy food, because it contains a rich supply of energizing B vitamins, which could help you burn calories faster.