It’s no secret that one of the hardest spots to slim down is the abdomen, which is why it’s an area that most people who want to get in shape have trouble with.
It just feels like no matter how hard you try, that stubborn fat on your belly does not want to go away!
Registered dietitian nutritionist with The Vitamin Shoppe, Brittany Michels, explains why that is, saying that “We store fat all over the body, yet people are quick to notice abdominal fat changes and tend to focus on targeted fat loss in this area. Unfortunately, research on targeted fat loss isn’t promising; however, exercise and dietary habits can reduce overall body fat, including the abdominal region.”
Of course, you might be aware that lifestyle changes and a healthy and balanced diet are the most suitable measures to be taken if you want to lose weight around your middle but you might be pleased to find out that certain supplements can also help with the whole process!
Michels says that one supplement, in particular, is a must if your goal is losing belly fat, and that is green tea extract!
She explains that “Green tea contains both caffeine and the flavonoid epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which help speed up metabolism and trigger the breakdown of fat molecules,” and also notes that studies have shown moderate consumption of green tea can really make a difference, helping you reduce waist circumference, lose abdomen fat and just overall body mass!
“If you’re not a fan of drinking the 3+ recommended cups of green tea daily to support fat loss, consider taking green tea extract in capsule form. The concentration of EGCG in a green tea extract supplement is what’s most important for abdominal fat loss,” the expert shares.
Naturally, you need to keep in mind that there is no such thing as a miracle ingredient that can help you lose belly fat all on its own.
You also need to have healthy eating habits and to exercise regularly to get the results you want.
With that being said, here are some other tips that will contribute to the process of shedding that abdominal fat!
Cut your added sugar consumption.
Michels mentions that “Studies suggest that added sugar can lead to fat accumulation around your abdomen and liver. Sugar provides empty calories that digest quickly and spike blood glucose rapidly. It sets off a metabolic response that jumps and crashes blood sugar levels, leaving you feeling hungry sooner. If not used for immediate energy, sugar may be stored as fat.”
She goes on to suggest that you need to assess your current added sugar intake first by paying close attention to food labels.
The next step is, of course, gradually decreasing the quantity by a few grams each week until your intake goal is reached.
“Surprising foods with high added sugar include yogurt, dressing, sauces, (like BBQ, ketchup, spaghetti sauce), granola, breakfast cereals and cereal bars, flavored coffee, pre-made soup, crackers, fruit juice, and canned fruit,’ Michels states.
Michels also mentions that you can also replace your favorite sugar-sweetened beverages with either lower or even no-added-sugar options.
Candy, cookies, and other sweetened snacks can also be swapped with cut-up veggies, your favorite fruit, or other lean protein sources such as a hard-boiled egg, uncured beef jerky and protein shakes.
Focus on soluble fiber.
Michels explains that “Soluble fiber is found in plant foods and has a gel-like consistency that slows down digestion, improves satiety, and aids in blood sugar management. The average American diet is very processed and low in fiber.”
According to a study that lasted for no less than 5 years, consuming around 10 grams of soluble fiber every day is able to reduce abdominal fat by 3.7 per cent!
As for how you can increase the intake of soluble fiber, the expert suggests that you need to correctly assess your current intake and then increase it by at least 10 grams every day for the best results.
“Soluble fiber food sources include oatmeal, flax, beans, carrots, green beans, broccoli, navel oranges, avocados, grapefruit, strawberries. Those who are unable to meet this minimum fiber goal from whole foods alone would benefit most from a soluble fiber supplement.”
Michels goes on to recommend The Vitamin Shoppe Glucomannan Capsules.
Weight train and do cardio.
There is no doubt that weight training and cardiovascular exercises are two of the most effective habits you can develop for a healthy life.
Michels explains that “These activities have also been found to decrease the risk of chronic disease and aid in weight management. Exercise also aids in blood sugar management and stress reduction, which are both associated with abdominal fat when not in check.”
Furthermore, she says that “Those that schedule and write down their workouts on their calendar are more likely to stick to them. If you don’t have 30 minutes at once, consider breaking up your activity into three, 10-minute sessions throughout the day.”