HOW TO LOSE BELLY FAT FAT … FOR GOOD!

Kick off the New Year in good health with our practical tips to trim your tum and shift belly fat.

Healthy Food Guide (Australia) - - FEATURES -

Find your­self an ‘ac­count­abil­ity buddy’

Peo­ple who tell oth­ers what they’re aim­ing to achieve are more likely to reach their goal. Say­ing it aloud means be­ing ac­count­able. Do you know any­one on a sim­i­lar jour­ney, so you can sup­port each other? Ask a friend to be your ex­er­cise buddy, or a fam­ily mem­ber to help with meal prep. And join our HFG Kick-start Weight-loss Chal­lenge Face­book group!

Find your why

New Year, new you? Re­search shows that 80 per cent of New Year’s res­o­lu­tions fail by Fe­bru­ary, so work out why weight loss is im­por­tant to you. This will give you the in­cen­tive to keep go­ing. Re­mem­ber, do­ing the small things con­sis­tently leads to big­ger suc­cesses, be­cause mak­ing a change re­quires us to do some­thing re­peat­edly un­til it be­comes a new habit.

Cut down on re­fined carbs

Highly pro­cessed foods like white bread, bis­cuits, chips and sweets cause rapid in­creases in your blood glu­cose lev­els, which trig­ger a big in­sulin re­sponse. The re­sult is your body stores that ex­cess glu­cose as body fat if you aren’t do­ing enough ex­er­cise to burn it off. Whole grains and slow-re­lease carbs, such as sweet pota­toes and brown rice, are health­ier al­ter­na­tives.

Move more

Be­ing ac­tive not only helps you lose cen­time­tres from your waist, it also keeps your heart and bones strong and im­proves your in­sulin sen­si­tiv­ity (re­duc­ing your risk of type 2 di­a­betes). Phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity kicks in feel-good en­dor­phins, and it can even make you smarter!

If time poor, try a 15–20 minute high in­ten­sity in­ter­val train­ing (HIIT) ses­sion, or put your train­ers on and start walk­ing — every­where.–If you’re desk bound, then get up and move around the room ev­ery half an hour.–

Keep calm and carry on

Un­der stress, your body re­leases cor­ti­sol, which stim­u­lates your ap­petite, slows me­tab­o­lism and en­cour­ages fat to linger in­side your ab­domen. Yoga med­i­ta­tion breath­ing has been shown to help peo­ple man­age stress. Or try an ex­er­cise such as swim­ming laps to re­lease those feel-good hor­mones.

Eat protein at ev­ery meal

Protein keeps you full for longer, your body ex­pends en­ergy to burn it, and it keeps mus­cles healthy.‡The more mus­cle you have, the faster your me­tab­o­lism and the more kilojoules you’ll burn each day. We lose 10 per cent of our mus­cle mass each decade after the age of 30, which means our me­tab­o­lism slows down un­less we balance our food with ex­er­cise. ‡

Re­strict starchy carbs to lunch

You’ll have more time to di­gest and use them as en­ergy rather than stor­ing them as fat, which hap­pens when you eat close to bed­time. Starchy carbs in­clude whole­grain bread, cous­cous, pasta, rice and pota­toes. At din­ner­time, get cre­ative with veg, and keep carbs to one-quar­ter of your plate.

Drop meal sizes dur­ing the day

You know the say­ing: break­fast like a king, lunch like a prince and dine like a pau­per, yet most of us do it the other way round. Get­ting a good break­fast with enough protein will kick-start your me­tab­o­lism and keep you go­ing un­til lunchtime — so you’re less likely to snack on high-sugar, high-fat foods mid-morn­ing.

Cel­e­brate quiet vic­to­ries

When you cut back on kilojoules, your body usu­ally burns vis­ceral fat first. Add ex­er­cise to the mix, and you’ll move fur­ther along the path of los­ing more of that fat. So, even if the num­ber on the scales doesn’t shift, you’ll be los­ing cen­time­tres from your waist, which is a huge win for your health!

Stress en­cour­ages fat to linger in your ab­domen, so try yoga as a way to man­age your mood

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