The issue with belly fat goes way deeper than just making your clothes a little tighter.
Though your main focus may be that super flat stomach, you should also be aware that excess belly fat can have negative effects on your health.
But don’t worry, in this article, I’ll show you 9 effective steps you can take to lose belly fat fast!
Table of Contents
How to Lose Belly Fat Fast: 9 Effective Steps
1. Binge on high-fiber foods
Studies (4) have shown that there’s a link between adding more fiber in your diet and the reduction of belly fat.
Fiber is digested slower, which tends to keep you full for longer, increase your satisfaction, and reduce appetite.
The recommended daily fiber intake is around 14 g per 1000 calories, with a minimum of 25 g and a maximum of 75 g per day.
Fiber is typically found in vegetables, fruits, and legumes.
2. Reduce your sugar intake
Eating sugar in moderation is no problem at all.
However, many people don’t realize how much sugar they’re eating, not only that, but sugar is digested super fast making it very easy to overeat.
Sugary foods are not filling and tend to have little to no vitamins or minerals.
Many people are able to lose belly fat fast just by limiting sugar and focusing on whole foods without even having to track calories.
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3. Limit your carbohydrate intake
Now, I’m not saying to completely cut off carbohydrates. I do not believe carbohydrates are the devil.
In fact, there are a few benefits of eating carbohydrates, but if you’re trying to lose weight, you may want to limit them.
The reason many people do well on low carb diets is that carbs are very easy to over-consume, especially if most of your calories come from processed/fast-digesting carbs, such as white rice, white bread, pasta, crackers, sugary drinks, candy, and cereal.
Choosing fibrous and slow-digesting carbs, such as green vegetables, legumes, and sweet potatoes will help you stay full for longer.
Another options to keep you on track with your weight loss efforts is to choose low-carb snacks.
Another way many people find success is by not consuming carbohydrates at night or after 6:00 pm.
This is NOT because carbohydrates after a certain time get stored as fat, but because completely eliminating carbs at night oftentimes reduces your total daily calorie intake, which is the main driver for weight loss.
That’s why some people also find success by skipping breakfast (intermittent fasting).
It’s not because breakfast is “bad,” but because it helps them reduce the total amount of calories for the day.
4. Add apple cider vinegar to your diet
Studies (5) showed that those who consumed between 1-2 tablespoon daily had a significant decrease in belly fat compared to those who didn’t.
5. Get high-quality sleep
Many people are aware that sleep is important, but they still take it for granted.
Lab studies have shown that being deprived of sleep leads to hormonal alterations, which may lead to overeating and lead to gaining belly fat.
So do your best to get between 6 or 8 hours of good quality sleep every night.
6. Exercise regularly, especially resistance training
Belly fat is very receptive to exercise and diet, therefore, consider exercising at least 30 minutes every day. You can try going for a morning walk or swim.
Resistance training, such as weightlifting will help you burn more calories over time.
As you tone and build more muscle, your body will need more energy to maintain them so you’ll burn more calories.
When you lose weight, your body thinks you’re starving and slows your metabolism.
It burns fewer calories and becomes more efficient at extracting calories from the foods you’re eating as a method of survival.
Making weight loss more difficult as you go.
Example of Resistance Training
- Weight Lifting
Weight lifting is the preferred form of resistance training for most.
You should aim to lift a weight that’s challenging to you, but that allows you to perform the exercises with correct form.
You can try performing around 6-12 repetitions per exercise and rest anywhere from 1-3 minutes between sets.
Some women are afraid that lifting weights will make them look bulky, however, this is not the case.
It takes a lot of hard work, intense training, meticulous dieting, and a long time to build muscle, especially for women.
- HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training)
HIIT is when you do short bouts of high-intensity exercise, typically for 10-30 seconds, where you bring your heart rate up to ~90% of your max heart rate, followed by a few seconds of rest and then repeat.
A few examples of HIIT are to do sprints for 20 seconds and then rest for 40 seconds.
7. Eat more protein
Studies (10) have shown that people on high protein diets lose significantly more fat and belly fat than those who are on low protein diets.
Just like fiber, protein also takes longer to digest, which means that it will keep you full for longer.
Protein also has a higher thermic effect than carbs and fats, which means that it takes more energy (burns more calories) for the body to digest it.
High protein diets often get a bad rep around women because they believe it will make them look bulky. Lucky for you, that’s not the case.
Protein is an essential nutrient needed for maintaining tissues, organs, skin, and muscles. Plus, your nails and hair are mostly made of protein.
Protein will also help you prevent losing muscle during weight loss, which it’s important for maintaining a speedy metabolism.
So try getting anywhere from 0.7 g – 1.2 g of protein per pound of bodyweight. The heavier you are, the lower on the range you’d be.
If you’re having a difficult time reaching your daily protein goals, adding some whey protein can be of great help.
8. Eat More Good Fats
Just like carbohydrates, many people fear eating fat. Fats, however, are another essential nutrient, they help your body absorb vitamins A, D, E, and K and regulate your hormones.
That’s great news for those who love the keto diet.
A few good fat sources are coconut oil, avocados, nuts, seeds, and virgin olive oil.
9. Use low-fat cooking methods
Instead of going for deep-fried foods, try other methods of cooking that use less fat, such as baking, broiling, boiling, or grilling.
The Three Types of Fat
Before diving into how to lose belly fat, let’s first understand the three types of fat.
- Subcutaneous fat: The fat located below the skin’s surface.
- Triglycerides: The type of fat that circulates in your bloodstream.
- Belly fat (visceral fat): The type of fat that is stored around vital organs like your liver, pancreas, and intestines.
What is Belly Fat?
Belly fat is the fat in the abdominal region and it’s considered the most harmful type of fat as it sits very close to vital organs like your liver, pancreas, and intestines.
While most people focus on losing belly fat just for the looks, which is completely understandable.
It’s important to understand that belly fat is also linked to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s, insulin resistance, and other diseases.
So losing belly fat becomes important not only for you to look physically attractive (according to your own standards) but also for living a healthier life.
What Causes Belly Fat?
Belly fat is caused by eating more food than you need (calorie surplus).
If you’re eating more food than your body uses for energy, the excess food will be stored as body fat for later.
If you keep eating more and more food than needed, you’ll keep storing more and more belly fat.
Now, it’s important to remember that other things, such as stress, anxiety, and hormones can lead you to overeat in the first place, but in the end, excess calories remain the main reason for excess belly fat.
8 Tasty Foods That Help You Lose Belly Fat Fast
1. Rolled or Steel Cut Oats
What’s great about oatmeal is that it’s loaded with fiber, which is important for maintaining gut health and making sure that you’re able to absorb the nutrients of the foods you eat.
Oatmeal is very easy to make, just add water and maybe a scoop of low-fat and low-carb whey protein and you are ready to go.
Food with high fiber content will digest slower and prevent your energy levels from crashing during the day.
That’s also why you have to choose rolled or steel-cut oats over instant oats. Instant oats are the most processed, which means they’ve been stripped from some of their nutrients and are digested faster.
Here’s a great overnight oats recipe for weight loss you can try!
Avocados! Yeap… You can stop drooling now…
Even though they’re mostly fat, they’re packed with healthy fats, the same you find in olive oil.
They also contain potassium and fiber, which, as I mentioned before, will make you stay full for longer.
So consider adding avocados to your meals, make guacamole, or throw some in a salad.
3. Cruciferous Vegetables
These are the vegetables that are not leafy, such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, and cauliflower.
These are also super high in fiber and low in calories, which will help you stay full without packing too many calories.
They also contain lots of vitamins and minerals that are important for maintaining a healthy immune system, heal up bones, wounds, and more.
4. Leafy Greens
These are vegetables like kale, spinach, lettuce, arugula, and collards.
They tend to be even lower in calories than cruciferous vegetables. Therefore, they’re another great way of adding food volume without the extra calories.
These also contain different vitamins and minerals than cruciferous vegetables as well as antioxidants.
5. Chicken Breast and Lean Meats
Both of these foods are very high in protein, which is an essential nutrient for our health.
Studies (4) have also shown that eating an adequate amount of protein for you can cut cravings by 60%.
So feel free to add some lean meats in order to reach your daily protein requirements.
6. Low-fat, Low-carb Whey Protein
Using whey protein powder for weight loss is a good solution for those who are pressed for time and find it difficult to get meet their daily protein requirements.
Just keep in mind that whey protein is digested a little faster and won’t be as filling since it’s also mixed with liquid.
So feel free to mix your favorite whey protein with other foods like oatmeal or fruits to get more satiated.
Here are some iced coffee protein shake recipes you can try!
7. Whole Eggs
Eggs are another food that’s high in both fats and protein.
Are you seeing the pattern here?
Keeping your protein high and getting healthy fats in your diet will help you stay full leading to fewer calories being consumed throughout the day.
Interestingly, this study (5) showed that women who ate eggs for breakfast instead of bagels had a greater feeling of fullness than those who didn’t.
So it might be worth adding some to your morning routine.
With salmon, you get the best of both worlds – Protein and fats.
Due to its protein and fat content, this food will also keep you very satisfied throughout the day.
Salmon is a bit high in calories, so make sure to consume a moderate amount or pair it with some vegetables or a small portion of rice.
Try to avoid creamy sauces on top of your salmon, instead, you can squeeze some fresh lemon to add some flavor!
Is Calorie Counting Necessary?
While calorie counting is important to know in order for you to get more familiarized with how much calories/nutrients each food has, it isn’t necessary.
However, if you do not enjoy counting calories, just try to focus on eating more vegetables and protein and a moderate amount of carbs and good fats.
You can definitely lose weight without tracking calories.
Other Tips to Reduce Cravings
- Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking water is a great way to lose weight naturally.
- Drink Some Coffee
Whether it is decaf or not, coffee has been shown to be very effective at suppressing appetite.
Interestingly, this study (7) showed that decaf was better at reducing hunger than regular coffee.
However, try not to add sugar or creamers as they can increase your calorie intake.
- Use Smaller Plates When Eating
People often tend to fill up their plate when eating, when you use a smaller plate, you get the sensation that you’re eating a lot and fill full. Crazy, right?
Studies (8) have shown that using smaller plates causes individuals to eat less food. This is also why “all you can eat” restaurants use super small plates.
- Drink Peppermint Tea
Studies (9) show that the scent alone of peppermint is enough to help you reduce appetite and cravings.
So consider sipping on some peppermint tea whenever you feel those cravings.
If you’re ready to start your weight loss journey, Avocadu’s 21-Day Fat Loss Challenge is the place to start!
This plan helps men and women lose 10-21 pounds in just 21 days and can be repeated as many times as you want.