Your belly. Your butt. Your chin. Your thighs. Whether you’re sick of your beer gut or can’t lose your cankles, we all have trouble spots we wish we could slim down. Unfortunately, you can’t specifically target fat loss in precise locations in your body. It’s simple science: Everyone’s body is different, and some people are genetically predisposed to lose (and gain) weight in certain areas of their body compared to others. But you can lose weight overall, and as you do so, your body will lose inches all over.
1. Eat Three Square Meals Daily
Although some diet experts swear by smaller, frequent meals throughout the day, sticking to the basics might just be what’s best for blasting away belly fat. A study published in the journal Hepatology found that eating in between meals actually increased abdominal fat. The researchers suggest three square meals a day would be better for your waistline.
2. Try A HIIT Workout
HIIT, which stands for high-intensity interval training, is the hot new way to work out, according to fitness enthusiasts. And the benefits are worth it. Not only do you reap the benefits of high-intensity workouts in a shorter period of time, but it can also help blast belly fat. Greek researchers studied exercisers who performed intervals for 20 minutes and another group that ran for 20 minutes straight on the treadmill. After eight weeks, the group who did intervals ended up losing two inches of belly fat, while the treadmill group lost less than one inch.
3. Fill Up On Fiber
Fiber is slow to digest, so it helps keep you fuller, longer. Loading up on this important nutrient will help keep you feeling satiated and help you kick those junk food cravings to the curb. Fewer empty calories mean less back fat. Load up on whole grains, beans, and nuts for a much-needed fiber boost.
4. Lay Off The Sugar
Sugar is in everything and is detrimental to your health beyond the empty calories. Sugar causes weight gain quicker than other calories because it spikes your blood sugar and causes your insulin to increase, leading your body to store more fat. Giving up sugar will lead to a number of health benefits, less hunger, increased energy, and losing inches, especially in your back and belly.
5. Eat More Carrots
If you’re suffering from saggy face skin and an unsightly “turkey neck,” load up on carrots. The vibrant orange veggie is chock-full of carotenoids, which prevent cell damage and premature skin aging by protecting the skin from free-radical damage. The less aging and wrinkles you have on your face, the thinner it will look. Plus, carrots are full of vitamins and antioxidants, which can combat inflammation.
6. Lay Off The Salt
If you love dousing your meals in salt, it’s time to put the shaker down. A Spanish study published in the journal Nutricion Hospitalaria found that sodium intake may promote weight gain. Plus, too much salt can cause your body to retain water, resulting in face bloat and puffy eyes. Even if you don’t use table salt that often, sodium lurks in lots of processed food in large amounts, so be sure to read your labels.
7. Stop Eating After Dinner
Doing all the arm exercises in the world isn’t going to help if there’s still a layer of fat covering your upper body. “The more body fat you lose, the more muscle tone will pop,” says Jim White, RD, ACSM HFS, owner of Jim White Fitness and Nutrition Studios. He recommends to cut down on eating after dinner as much as possible to boost weight loss.
8. Up Your Veggie Intake
“Oftentimes, the layer of fat covering the leg muscles can blur the definition,” White says. And more veggies could help burn fat; a study published in the journal Nutrition Research found that overweight adults in Brazil lost more weight when they ate more fruits and veggies. White recommends eating more fruits and vegetables to boost overall weight loss, which will show off your toned legs. He says to aim for at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day.