Wanting to lose belly fat is understandable. Extra weight around the stomach area is some of the hardest to shed.
It is also some of the most dangerous fat to have. Shedding these pounds isn’t just about looks – it can help your long term health.
Whether you are looking to feel more comfortable in your clothes or trying to lose belly fat for health reasons, there are some simple things you can do to make a difference in your belly fat in 1 week.
Health Problems Associated with Belly Fat
Before tackling how to lose belly fat, here is some information on why it is important.
There are two kinds of body fat. One is called subcutaneous. That is the fat that lies under the skin that you can easily grab with your hand. The other type is known as visceral fat.
Visceral fat is deep in your abdomen where it surrounds your organs. According to a study published in Harvard Health, this is the type of fat that has been linked to heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and breast cancer in women (1).
Taking off this extra weight is a great long and short term goal!
Belly Fat – And How To Lose It
Good eating habits and exercise are the two main strategies for making big changes. But to lose belly fat in a week, you are going to need some specific tips. Let’s break it down for you:
Not surprisingly, exercise is one of the key strategies for reducing your waist size. However, trying to target your stomach by doing specific exercises, like situps or crunches just doesn’t work.
These exercises will strengthen your abs, but they aren’t going to help you lose weight around your middle. What you need to do is to stay active throughout your day, and then also plan for regular and consistent exercise.
The best way to attack the extra inches is regular, consistent aerobic exercise (2). You will need at least 30 minutes of moderately intense activity, up to even 60 minutes, depending on how much you have to lose. Unfortunately, as we age, our metabolism slows down.
This means you are going to need to burn more calories to lose weight. This is why aerobic exercise is the key to making a difference in just one week. When they think of cardio, most people think of running. But you don’t have to be a runner for weight loss.
Swimming, biking, jumping rope, dance classes, and even power walking are all great examples of cardio exercises.
3. Strength Training
However, do you want to keep your belly fat off? Add strength training. Building muscle through resistance training can help your metabolism. Muscle mass burns calories more efficiently. So, in addition to that cardio class, hit the weights. If you don’t have a personal trainer, there are many great sources of weight lifting workouts online.
You can strength train at home doing simple bodyweight exercises such as squats, lunges, planks, sit-ups, and abdominal crunches.
Want to feel good long term and continue to lose fat, even after a week? The best way is not to diet, but to change how you eat every day. In other words, for long term results, you need to change the way you look at food.
5. Avoid Sugar and Sugary Drinks
You may already know that sugary sodas can add inches to your waist.
But did you know that some fruit juices are also loaded with sugar? There are other drinks where sugar likes to hide like sports drinks, sweetened coffee, and bottled teas. Alcohol is another area to watch for sugar. To get that flat stomach you will want to reduce your alcohol consumption. In particular, look out for mixers. Cocktails that contain fruit juice or soda can cause weight gain.
Want to lose fat? Cut out these unnecessary carbs. Not only do they add calories but studies show that your body has a hard time registering sweetened beverages and being able to tell when it is full (3). That means you eat more overall, maybe even more than you mean to!
It’s not just sugary drinks that are a problem, however. Food manufacturers slip extra sugar into all kinds of packaged and processed foods, including things you might not expect. This is why it is always a good idea to check your food labels.
6. Consume More Protein
So, you have removed the extra sugar from your diet, now what? You want to add in more protein. You don’t have to have a low-carb diet, but adding protein may be one of the most effective tools for losing weight.
Why? Protein can help you feel more full, which helps reduce cravings (4).
Foods that are high in sugar like cake and cookies, or high in refined carbs, like white bread and pasta, are burned by your body quickly, leaving you wanting more.
Healthy protein sources like chicken, lean meat, fatty fish, eggs, seeds, lentils, and beans can help you feel full longer and eat less. One easy place you can make a huge difference in fat is at the breakfast table.
Eggs scrambled with vegetables, Greek yogurt parfaits with fresh fruit and protein smoothies made with protein powder, spinach, and fruit offer a lot of health benefits. Plus, they will keep you from snacking between breakfast and lunch.
7. Add Foods with Fiber to Your Diet
Fiber has several roles to play with helping you to lose belly fat.
Fiber helps your digestive system slow down and absorb nutrients (5). When your system is slowed down, you have a decrease in appetite, which helps you eat fewer calories.
The best way to get more fiber is to eat lots of plants. Vegetables, for example, have a lot of fiber.
Leafy greens, fruits, nuts, and some whole grains like brown rice are fiber powerhouses and can help you lose belly fat in 1 week. Not only are these key in how to lose weight, but they will also help you get the vitamins your body needs.
8. Prepare Your Own Food
Processed foods and junk food from restaurants contain extra sugar, salt, and trans fat. These three will all hurt your efforts to reduce belly fat in 1 week. Cooking from home yourself and planning your meals will help you know exactly what you are eating. This way you can get the right amount of nutrients you want for fat loss and none of the ones you don’t.
You can plan your carb intake, and the right size servings to hit your goals.
For example, replace pasta with veggie noodles, sugary morning cereal with cottage cheese and fresh fruit, and white rice with quinoa.
Here’s another tip to reduce fat in 1 week, get rid of the salt shaker. Salt causes your body to retain water and your belly to feel bloated. Look for high sodium levels on labels, or better yet, cook your meals yourself and replace salt for the duration with other spices.
There are lots of great salt-free spices you can use in your kitchen instead.
9. Get Your Sleep
In addition to a daily workout and great nutrition, to get rid of fat fast you need to get your sleep. Not only does a lack of quality sleep lead to a number of diseases, but poor sleep can also lead to weight gain and high stress. Sleep loss can also have effects on your energy levels and endurance.
All of this means that weight loss becomes even more difficult. If you suffer from regular sleep loss, you should contact your doctor.
To lose weight in 1 week, you need to reduce your calorie intake and sugars, make a menu of high-quality veggies, proteins, and increase your sleep.
- Harvard Health Publishing. “Abdominal Fat and What to Do about It.” Harvard Health, www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/abdominal-fat-and-what-to-do-about-it.
- Ohkawara K;Tanaka S;Miyachi M;Ishikawa-Takata K;Tabata I; “A Dose-Response Relation Between Aerobic Exercise and Visceral Fat Reduction: Systematic Review of Clinical Trials.” International Journal of Obesity (2005), U.S. National Library of Medicine, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17637702/.
- Mattes, Richard D, and Wayne W Campbell. “Effects of Food Form and Timing of Ingestion on Appetite and Energy Intake in Lean Young Adults and in Young Adults with Obesity.” Journal of the American Dietetic Association, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Mar. 2009, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2680008/.
- FB;, Halton TL;Hu. “The Effects of High Protein Diets on Thermogenesis, Satiety and Weight Loss: A Critical Review.” Journal of the American College of Nutrition, U.S. National Library of Medicine, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15466943/.
- “Soluble and Insoluble Fiber: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia Image.” MedlinePlus, U.S. National Library of Medicine, medlineplus.gov/ency/imagepages/19531.htm.