Love to get slim, achieve a flat tummy and feel stronger no matter what your age? Our experts have a plan to achieve just that!
Call it a muffin top, bloated tummy, or, to get medical, abdominal adiposity, and the fact is, even if you’re a little overweight, those extra kilos have an infuriating tendency to settle around the middle.
It’s not just bad for morale, there are a number of health reasons why you might want to do something about it too.
“Excess abdominal fat reflects visceral fat – that’s fat laid down around the major organs, which has been linked with a host of health problems,” explains obesity expert Professor Tony Leeds.
The good news is, whatever your age, you can still lose the bulge and rediscover a more slimline you with our easy flat tummy tactics.
High levels of blood sugar increase insulin, which causes fat to gather around the middle. Veggie protein sources- think quinoa, pulses, nuts and seeds are best for stabilising blood sugar, as too much animal protein (meat and cheese) can make your body acidic, leaching calcium from the bones.
Make your heart race
High intensity interval training (HIIT) is great exercise because it triggers the release of hormones that encourage kilojoule burning, explains Professor Jamie Timmons, a leading expert on HIIT. It’s also quick: warm up, then work out as hard as you can for 60 seconds. Rest for a minute, and repeat up to five times. Do it three times a week. This will help to reduce tummy fat.
You don’t need to do countless crunches to achieve a flatter tummy. Weight training, or resistance training in general, helps keep muscle tone and slows muscle loss. Muscle is more metabolically active than fat, so the more you have, the more fat you burn. Try just two to three 30-minute sessions a week.
Try: Aim for 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions. Weights should be heavy enough that you struggle with the last few reps. Resistance bands, kettle bells or exercises that use body weight, such as Pilates, yoga or pole dancing are excellent too.
Wipe out the white stuff
“Foods such as white sugar, white bread pastries and biscuits have a high glycaemic index (GI), they cause blood sugar to soar, triggering the release of tummy unfriendly insulin,” says nutritionist, Dr Marilyn Glenville. Eat slow-release veg like spinach, kale, broccoli and cucumber, and increase your intake of lean protein – chicken, fish and pulses.
After poor sleep, your body craves sugar, fat and caffeine to stay awake. These pile on tummy fat and only boost energy levels temporarily, before a crashing low. After a good sleep, your body craves healthy foods such as protein and leafy veg. Try to unwind, regulate your room temperature, and avoid distractions to help you sleep better.
DISCLAIMER: Before starting any diet, you should speak to your doctor. You must not rely on the information on this website/newsletter as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.
A freelance writer and editor, with 15 years’ experience in the media industry. With a passion for health and fitness, Tammy loves nothing more than researching the latest wellness trends. And if she’s not running around after her sweet four-year old daughter, you’ll find Tammy on her bike, in the gym or exploring the great outdoors – followed by a good coffee, of course!