14 Ways To Flatten Your Belly Naturally

This is a guest contribution from Healthy Living & Beauty.

A lot of fat around the middle is undesirable to most people.  A trim and toned stomach is a delight to have, and many people struggle to have one.

You may have tried quite a few strategies to get rid of the bulge on your tummy, without getting anywhere.  Take heart.  You can trim your middle.

There are simple measures you can incorporate in your day to day life that can result in you having a desirable waistline.  Before we get to these strategies for a slim waistline, you need to remember the following.

Healthy habits contribute to the overall well-being of your entire body and help you achieve your fitness goals.  The following four are habits that are a must for any fitness goals including a slim waistline.

Sleep well.  You must ensure you get at seven to eight hours of sleep every day.  When you sleep, your body gets an opportunity to renew and rejuvenate itself.  When you are grumpy and not well rested, you cannot be in control of much of your life including making healthy choices.  Adequate sleep is a necessity you should ensure you get.  Watch out not to become too sedentary though, and begin to oversleep.  Oversleeping will also add fatty layers to your mid-section.

Keep stress away.  When you are so worried about all manner of things, your body produces steroids and stress hormones.  These produce many undesirable effects, including bloating in your body.  The body produces cortisol when you are stressed, which causes padding of your midsection in an attempt to protect your vital organs.  Find ways to relax.  Do things that relax you and keep off harmful habits that may appear relaxing but are not in the long-run.  These habits are such as smoking and taking alcohol.  Both of these have a way of increasing your midsection and also increasing your stress levels.

Stay hydrated.  Drinking at eight big glasses of water hydrates you.  When you are well hydrated, you do not become bloated.  As well, drinking enough water allows your body to flush out toxins in your body.  Drinking enough water also helps your body shed fat, especially from your waist.

Eat healthily.  If you prefer not to prepare your meals and either go out or buy processed foods, it is time to change the habit.  Processed foods contain many ingredients that are harmful to you even when otherwise stated.  Eating out is also not a good option.  Eating out takes away your control over what ingredients go into your food.  When you eat out, you have less control over what ingredients go into your food.  You are also most likely going to eat more unhealthy fats, refined carbohydrates, and sugar.  You control which ingredients go into your food when you cook, enabling you to make healthy choices.  Choose to prepare your meals at home for healthy food.

Read Also: Healthy Living While Pregnant

Here now are some fourteen tips to help you achieve a slimmer midsection.

  1. Cut back on sugar and add organically-grown leafy vegetables

Give up soda, and instead, drink water or juices derived from organically grown vegetables.  Soda has too many calories.  Pre-packaged fruit juice is also often laden with sugar such that you end up drinking much more calories than if you eat the fruit.  Avoid those as well.

If you have a sweet tooth, eat dark chocolate and cakes made with natural alternatives to sugar or just a little sugar.

Negative calorie foods are those that are metabolized with more calories than those they hold.  They are high in vitamins, minerals, water or proteins.  They include wild caught fish, chicken, asparagus, watermelon, tomatoes, broccoli, grapefruit, yogurt, celery, turkey, chicken broth, apples, oranges, cucumber, arugula, lettuce, and coffee.  With these foods, you can prepare tasty snacks and meals that have negative calories.

Adding a salad to every meal will do wonders for your waist trimming goals.  Some green leafy vegetables like kale, collard greens, arugula, and watercress have been found to contain compounds that prevent the formation of fat cells.  Consuming this will do wonders for your body.

  1. Increase your intake of vitamin C

Eat at least one fruit that is laden with Vitamin C every day.  Oranges, limes, lemon, broccoli, kale, bell pepper, kiwi, and grapefruit are laden with vitamin C, and also other vitamins and minerals.  Vitamin C is a naturally reduces stress, maintains blood pressure and aids digestion.

Lower stress levels and healthy digestion keeps the midsection trim.  Also, some of these fruits rich in vitamin C are also excellent for cutting down weight.  These include lemon, lime, and peppers.

You can make your detox water by cutting up whole oranges, lemons or grapefruits and adding them to water, complete with their peels.  Sip this water first thing in the morning.  More of the water should be sipped in the course of the day until at least eight glasses are consumed before bedtime.

The peel of the citrus fruits has been found to contain a compound that dissolves in the detox water and helps flush out toxins from the liver by stimulating liver enzymes.  This water also aids bowel movement when the digestive system is lazy.

  1. Eat eggs for breakfast.

Eggs have muscle building macronutrients that are lean and satisfying.  Eggs are the best natural source of choline.  Choline has many benefits.  One of its uses in the body is preventing the gene responsible for storing fat around the liver from performing its function.  The more you eat eggs, the more you lose the egg shape, since you will have less fat around your liver.

Read Also: 10 Fruits For Faster Weight Loss

Eggs from free range chicken are the best in that they are all natural and nutrient dense.  All types of eggs, however, have plenty of nutrients.

Eggs being a high protein food create a feeling of fullness and reduce appetite.  You will eat less if eggs become part of your diet for breakfast, which will go a long way in helping reduce your midsection.  Mixing eggs with vegetables makes a filling, high nutrient, low-calorie meal.

  1. Try some oatmeal.

Prepare yourself some delicious oatmeal for breakfast to help you cut pounds.  Top your oatmeal with fruits for a nourishing meal.  Both the cereal and the fruits are full of filling insoluble fiber, which is excellent for that satiated feel all day long.  The insoluble fiber also feeds healthy bacteria in your gut and lowers blood cholesterol.  If you cannot prepare oats in the morning, make them the previous night and refrigerate.

Oats being high in insoluble fiber digest slowly and keep you energetic all day long.  Studies have found that those who eat oats for breakfast regularly over time have a more reduced waist circumference and lower cholesterol level than those who eat other carbohydrates like noodles.

Oats are the right carbs for breakfast.  Fitness experts have found that carbs are best eaten for breakfast because they are utilized more efficiently when consumed in the morning.  When you eat carbs in the morning, they are usually assimilated during the day, and not much will be left in your body for storage.

  1. Eat Avocado.

The avocado fruit contains monounsaturated fatty acids which instruct the body not to store fat on the belly.  For a smaller waist circumference, eat at least half a medium sized avocado regularly.  It contains at least 10g of these fatty acids.  Avoid over eating this fruit, though.

The fatty acids in the avocado also keep you satiated for long.  Nutrition Journal did a study and found that people who ate half an avocado for lunch had their desire to eat later on reduced by 40%.

Avocados are a healthy choice because they are chemical free and fresh.  Avocados are one of the fruits with a very low pesticide load, which makes them very nutritious.

  1. Eat more red fruit.

The compound that gives red fruits their color can suppress the action of the genes responsible for fat storage.  This ability makes red fruits ideal for weight loss.  Choose red plums, red apples, watermelon and red grapes.

A study found that eating half a ruby red grapefruit with every meal resulted in an overall lowering of cholesterol levels and waist circumference in those who consumed the fruit.

Berries as well such as blueberries, raspberries and strawberries have powerful natural chemicals called polyphenols that help weight loss and also stop fat from forming.   Studies found that rats fed on a diet of berries three times a day had less abdominal fat than rats fed the same amount of food without the berries.  This observation in the rats is evidence that these red berries could go a long way in helping you achieve your ideal waistline.

Apples have a significantly higher level of insoluble fiber compared to other fruits.  Elevated levels of insoluble fiber lead to greater decreases in visceral fat –the fat found in the abdomen.   Pink lady apples, being very high in flavonoids resulted in a substantial reduction of waistline when often consumed by participants in a study.  They are particularly useful for getting rid of belly fat.

  1. Add probiotics to your diet.

Probiotics are an excellent way to lose belly fat.  Probiotics keep the digestive tract in tip-top shape by populating it with beneficial bacteria.  These bacteria ensure healthy digestion.

By cleaning up the gastrointestinal tract, they also result in reduced waist circumference.  Food does not unduly stay in the digestive tract when you consume probiotics because of the efficient action of the bacteria in fermented foods.

The best way to load up on probiotics is to drink yogurt and buttermilk.  The best yogurts to take are those with no added sugars or made at home.  Sugarless yogurt and that made at home can be sweetened with natural honey.

Commercial yogurts can frustrate your weight loss goals because they can be too high in processed sugar.  Refined sugar will increase your waistline.

You can take supplements for your probiotics, but these have the disadvantage that they may add harmful bacteria to your gut.  It is better to remain natural, as not all supplements are as natural as they claim to be.

  1. Take long leisurely walks.

Walking leisurely for thirty minutes is an excellent way to increase your metabolism and reduce your waistline.  Comfortable walking is one of the most efficient ways to burn belly fat without strenuous exercise.

Stroll down the road.  Take the dog for a walk in the park.  Walk at normal speed and enjoy the experience.  The benefits of walking will still be achieved even if you walk leisurely.  If you walk briskly, you could perhaps burn more calories.  But this brisk walking will leave you breathless, and you may feel de-motivated to take your walk again if you start thinking of it as a strenuous exercise.

Walking at a leisurely pace may help you burn more calories and get inches off your waistline if you are obese than brisk walking.  Researchers found that when obese people tried to walk briskly, it did more harm than good.  It resulted in some experiencing knee injuries and postural issues as well as not burning as many calories as would be expected.

When these obese participants in the study walked leisurely, they burned more calories and did not have the added disadvantage of a knee injury.  So, go ahead, take a leisurely walk in the park, and repeat it often.

  1. Get your posture right.

Always having the wrong posture can accentuate your stomach muscles leading to a pouch.  A proper sitting and standing position is a crucial step to a belly that looks toned.  Often slumping or slouching leads to the development of a paunch.

To make sure you have the right posture when sitting, always make sure your feet are on the floor as you sit.  If possible, place a small pillow at the small of your back to aid your sitting properly.

Train yourself to sit upright immediately you notice you are slouching or slumping.  Pull in your stomach muscles often in the course of the day.  This tuck will become uncomfortable to do if your posture is not right.  This exercise will improve your posture.

You will be able to stand upright if you imagine a rope pulling your upper body upwards in the direction of the ceiling.  If you imagine this, you will already feel your shoulders rise.

Your posture will improve with this small exercise.

  1. Cut down on starchy foods. Eat healthy carbohydrates.

Whole carbs are good for you even when you are dieting.  Whole food carbohydrates contain necessary vitamins and minerals needed by your body.  Being derived from nature, they probably also contain essential nutrients yet to be uniquely identified by man.

Do not completely give up eating carbohydrates but eat whole food sources.  Bulgur wheat, brown rice, cereal fiber, dark bread, and couscous are all healthy sources of carbohydrates.  They are also full of fiber and therefore easier to digest.  They reduce waist circumference.

Other plant sources of carbohydrates which are high in fiber are also recommended.  Avoid carbohydrates that have had their fiber content stripped off through processing.  These are such as white rice and white processed floors.

Processed carbohydrates that are low in fiber pad the waistline.  They also spike blood sugar which in the long run can result in diseases and a larger waistline.

  1. Sculpt your core.

As you move around during the day, pull in your stomach muscles.  Repeat this often in the course of the day.  Pull in your stomach muscles until it becomes easy and comfortable.

If you make it a habit of pulling in your stomach muscles frequently, you will find they no longer hang, and you naturally hold them tucked in.

This exercise is particularly good for toning the stomach muscles and dropping inches from your waistline.  Do not just practice this while you walk, also practice it when you brush your teeth or wait in a queue.

Including this simple exercise in much of your day will bring good results.

  1. Include fresh seafood in your diet.

Wild caught salmon, and other fatty fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.  Omega-3 fatty acids are an excellent food to reduce belly fat.  The wild caught fish should be prepared in a way to keep the calorie count low.

The wild caught salmon has an excellent nutritional profile.  It has just the right amount of omega -3 and omega-6 fatty acids, the nutrient responsible for waist circumference reduction.  90% of the salmon you will find on the market is the farmed type.  It has way too much omega -6, making it unhealthy.

The wild caught salmon is just excellent for knocking off inches from your belly.  Include it in your diet.

  1. Find time for a cardio

Belly fat is thick.  One of the most efficient ways to burn belly fat is to do aerobic exercises, according to a Duke University study.  According to the Duke University study, aerobics training burns 67% more calories than resistance training or a combination of the two.

If you are low in motivation, find ways to motivate yourself.  Constantly holding a picture of what you want and what you have can greatly motivate you.  You can also get a mentor, preferably someone who has achieved their weight loss goals.

Another excellent idea to motivate yourself not to miss your workout is to get a workout partner.  If you have someone who just like you wants to reduce their waist diameter, you will likely motivate one another.

Borrow a friend’s dog and chase it around the yard, or park.  You can have an excellent workout just chasing the dog around, even without realizing it.  Playing with a dog is helpful when you feel the need to change your routine.  You will still get a workout and without the monotony of the same moves, which may have become uninspiring, negatively affecting your motivation.

  1. Have activities with friends.

Need to just chat about anything and everything, take a walk with friends and catch up.

Instead of catching a movie on Saturdays, play an outdoor game with friends.  Or you can ride a bike or go hiking.  You still get time to be with friends but still get to work out.  You can also go running with friends while chatting.  These kinds of activities are especially useful for those who cannot schedule a workout.

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