In this article, we will talk about how to eliminate belly fat in 5 steps and why intermittent fasting is a particularly good way to do that.
Millions of people dream of having a fit body, but the reality can be cruel.
Think about it. Do you have some tight or smaller-sized clothes hidden in your closet? Do you hope to eventually drop some pounds, so you can put on the clothes you once loved again?
If the answer is yes, as it is for me, then you are not alone.
The fact is, quite often it is the extra pounds on your stomach that prevent you from having a toned body! Even some skinny guys may still have belly fat.
The reason is simple. When you eat too much and exercise too little, you’re likely to carry excess weight, especially in your abdomen area.
In this article, I’m going to share with you the 5 simple steps that have helped me achieve my goal of having a flat stomach. I believe they can help you too.
What Is Belly Fat?
The subcutaneous fat in the abdomen can provide protection for organs and store energy. Therefore, a small amount of fat is normal and necessary.
However, too much belly fat can endanger your health.
Abdomen fat, also known as visceral fat, is the cause of “beer belly”. It not only affects how you look but also causes many inflammatory diseases such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, or cancer.
Why Is Visceral Fat Dangerous?
Visceral fat is often considered the most dangerous fat.
Not because the fat in itself is dangerous, but because the way it comes about is dangerous to your organs, especially your liver.
You probably have heard that drinking too much alcohol can cause an alcoholic fatty liver (AFLD). Well, there is another disease called non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFLD) that is caused by fructose.
Many nutrients you get from food, including protein, fat and fiber, can be evenly dispersed in most of your body’s tissues. However, alcohol and fructose can only be broken down by your liver.
Do you know that the weight of your liver accounts for only one-sixtieth of your total body weight? In other words, your liver must withstand 60 times the workload of all other organs.
Alcohol and fructose provide extra energy for your liver and are converted into fat. These extra fats soon begin to accumulate in your liver and spread to other internal organs around the liver.
In addition, your poor liver is overwhelmed by two other things. Two hormones are called insulin and cortisol.
The role of insulin is to control blood sugar, while cortisol is a stress hormone, often produced in response to stress.
When your blood sugar spikes, your body releases more insulin to lower your blood sugar level. Over time, it can cause insulin resistance, which also puts more stress on your body.
The increase in stress raises the level of cortisol. This is how the vicious circle begins.
Studies have shown that the hormone cortisol is a key factor in the formation of fatty liver.
When your body continues to secrete more cortisol than it needs, it causes increased abdominal fat and a non-alcoholic fatty liver.
In addition, the high level of cortisol induces your urge to eat more frequently, which can also lead to obesity.
Once you have a fatty liver, you are likely to have insulin resistance.
Therefore, if you fix insulin resistance, you may reverse the fatty liver and your big belly.
How To Eliminate Belly Fat In 5 Simple Steps?
Now that you know what causes belly fat and fatty liver, you can have a flat stomach as long as you achieve the following five goals:
- Avoid alcohol
- Avoid sugary foods
- Increase insulin sensitivity
- Reduce cortisol levels
- Convert fat in your liver into energy and burn it
Here are the 5 steps to help you get rid of belly fat and reverse fatty liver.
1. Practice intermittent fasting
Fasting is the best way to reduce insulin resistance.
If your insulin is always at a high level, it may be difficult for your body to convert fat into energy.
It’s like, insulin locks the fat. There are no tools that can unlock it and use the fat as energy.
However, when your insulin level drops, the lock is loosened and releases the fat. As a result, your body is able to burn more fat.
Intermittent fasting is also the most effective way to increase growth hormone (HGH).
Literally, growth hormone is a hormone that helps your body’s growth and development.
However, it also has another very powerful function, which is to enhance the oxidation of fatty acids and promote fat burning. [*]
As you would expect, the decreased insulin releases fat, while the growth hormone level increases and burns fat. These two hormones work together tacitly. The longer you fast, the more fat you burn.
The most common and easiest way to perform intermittent fasting is the 16/8 method. It involves eating during the 8-hour window of the day and then fasting for the remaining 16 hours.
2. Follow a low-carbohydrate diet
Restricting carbohydrate intake can effectively control blood sugar and insulin levels. Coupled with intermittent fasting, you can burn fat faster.
You can start with cutting back on foods that are high in refined carbs, such as white rice, white flour, white bread, cakes and processed foods such as potato chips and biscuits.
Furthermore, many foods and beverages containing fructose should also be excluded from your shopping list. Foods and drinks like fruit juice, carbonated drinks, dried fruits and honey.
As fruits contain natural fructose, you can eat them in moderation. It is best to eat low-fructose vegetables and fruits, such as bananas, blueberries, strawberries, carrots, avocados, green beans and lettuce.
3. Quit alcohol
As we all know, excessive drinking can cause an alcoholic fatty liver and liver disease.
Long-term alcohol abuse can reduce the regeneration capacity of liver cells which causes serious and permanent damage.
A Study has found that heavy drinking, even for just a few days, can cause fat accumulation in the liver.
Fortunately, milder alcoholic fatty liver is reversible. If you stop drinking for two weeks, your liver will return to a nearly normal state.
Beer is a favorite drink of many people. However, when you have a glass of beer it is equivalent to consuming alcohol and carbohydrates at the same time. This can cause blood sugar to spike.
What’s more, beer is also called “liquid bread” and contains more calories than you may expect. Therefore, excessive drinking can lead to weight gain, especially an increase in your belly fat.
4. Stop eating lots of sugar
Sugar has been shown to contribute to obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer and tooth decay. [*]
Therefore, eating too much sugar is one of the worst things you can do to your body.
Especially if you drink alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic beverages contain both alcohol and sugar, so you may consume three times more fructose than usual. As a result, it can be more harmful to your liver.
To completely cut off sugar is not an easy task. The best way is not to store sweets at home and try to ensure a balanced diet throughout the day.
Moreover, eat foods that can suppress sugar addiction, such as avocados, nuts, eggs, and low-sugar fruits. Ensuring adequate sleep is also helpful.
5. Reduce stress
The purpose of reducing your stress is to lower the level of cortisol. Only when cortisol is kept at a healthy and low level can make the body burn fat better.
Here are some ways to help you relax and release stress:
- listening to music
- writing a diary
- taking a walk
- taking a hot bath
- chatting with your family or friends
Also, try to avoid eating foods that can lead to anxiety and insomnia, such as coffee or high-sodium foods.
What About Exercise?
We were told all the time to eat less and exercise more.
There is nothing wrong with this. Proper exercise is indeed good for your body.
However, if you want to lose weight or get rid of belly fat, then simply reducing calories may not work. The key factor is hormones.
Therefore, when you have a fatty liver and a big belly, exercise can have very little effect on that part of the fat. Even marathon runners may have fatty liver problems.
This is why many people do not see good results when doing sit-ups every day.
Although exercise and fitness won’t do much on a flat stomach, it also won’t hurt you if you do it right.
The main thing is, you shouldn’t overtrain because that may put more stress on your body and drive up your cortisol tremendously. This is not what you want to see.
You can burn calories through low pace walking, cycling, swimming or playing sports, without putting too much pressure on your body.
Another method that is easy to do is NEAT ( also known as Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis). This includes daily activities such as housework, shopping, cleaning or babysitting, etc.
In this way, you can increase your metabolism and burn fat unknowingly.
Millions of people are concerned about how to eliminate belly fat and keep it off.
Belly fat is also known as visceral fat or intra-abdominal fat, which is dangerous and harmful to your body.
The fact is, exercise does not work effectively by itself on this type of fat. Controlling the level of hormones in your body is the key, including insulin and cortisol.
If you want to have a flat stomach, the best way is to improve insulin sensitivity. You can achieve this goal by following intermittent fasting and a low-carb diet.
In addition, reducing stress can also help you reverse fatty liver and get rid of belly fat.