Can You Lose Belly Fat Without Doing Abs?

Medically Reviewed on 11/8/2021

While everybody dreams of having a flat tummy, nobody wants to put in the effort of hour-long exercises. But crunches and abs circuits aren't the only things that reduce belly fat.

Various non-workout-related habits help flatten your tummy. Some of these include dietary and lifestyle changes. So if you want to reduce abdominal fat, here are five ways to flatten your belly!

Five ways to flatten your belly -- no crunches needed!

The secret of a flatter tummy is not spending hours in the gym. Instead, focus on reducing your overall body fat percentage. A reduced body fat percentage can help make your body lean.

Excess fat around your midsection can cause various health problems such as type 2 diabetes. According to Harvard Health, every two inches of additional waist size raises the risk for cardiovascular disease by ten percent.

The extra fat around your belly is nestled deep around your organs. This visceral fat thrives on your hormones. So how do you lose this stubborn fat? Here are five ways that will help you achieve the goal of a flatter belly.

Eat strategically

Strategic eating is one of the best ways to lose belly fat. So if you wish to practice mindful eating, you should consume foods that contain good bacteria, high fiber content, and proteins. For example, probiotics help reduce tummy bloat caused by the bad flora in your gut.

Besides this, you should consume more fish, as it is an excellent source of protein. Fish also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation in the body.

You can also consume fish oil to reduce body fat. In one study, 44 adults took fish oil supplements. They lost an average of one pound of fat during the study.

They also experienced a drop in cortisol, a stress hormone that contributes to body fat. In addition to this, you should consume the following foods:

  • Eggs
  • MCT oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Green tea
  • Whey protein
  • Full fat yogurt
  • Skimmed milk

Avoid beverages that cause bloating

Some drinks, such as milk and alcohol, can make your belly more bloated than usual. So if you wish to achieve a flatter tummy, you have to avoid all such beverages.

It is okay to consume alcohol once in a while. Still, if you have a habit of drinking alcoholic beverages, they could be the sole reason for your belly fat.

Beverages such as soda, milk, alcoholic drinks, protein shakes, and coffee cause abdominal bloating, making your belly appear fatter. Hence, avoiding these drinks could help you get a flatter belly.

Reduce salt intake

When you consume more salt, your body retains more water. Water retention makes your belly appear more bloated.

Research also suggests that people who consume a salt-rich diet tend to weigh more. As a result, they also have higher BMI (body mass index), more visceral fat, and a higher waist-to-height ratio.

Although consuming less salt will not help you lose weight, it will help your body get rid of water weight. As a result, your body's fat content remains the same, but your belly appears flatter.

Get sufficient sleep

Getting sufficient sleep is vital if you wish to avoid gaining weight. When you don't get enough sleep, your appetite increases. This is due to the two hunger hormones called ghrelin and leptin.

Ghrelin is released in the stomach, and it indicates to the brain that you're hungry. Leptin suppresses hunger. These two hormones regulate your appetite.

Besides this, when you don't get enough sleep, your cortisol levels rise. Cortisol causes an increase in belly fat. When you don't get sufficient sleep, you're more likely to consume food because cortisol makes you feel more hungry.

You should aim to get seven to eight hours of sleep to avoid weight gain and to reduce belly fat.

Go for regular walks

Many people dread working out in the gym. If you're not a fitness freak, then it's time to ditch the workout regimen. Instead, we suggest that you start going for walks. Walking will not only help you lose belly fat, it will also contribute to your overall physical fitness.

If you go for walks, it will help you burn more calories, improve your heart health, and lower your blood pressure. Walking is a convenient and low-impact exercise that wouldn't exhaust you.

So if you dread the crunches, abs circuits, and other high-intensity interval training sessions, these five tips will help you achieve a flatter belly.

If your belly fat causes any discomfort, remember to talk to your doctor about any underlying health conditions.

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Medically Reviewed on 11/8/2021
References
Harvard Health: "5 surprising benefits of walking," "Taking aim at belly fat."

Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition: "Effects of supplemental fish oil on resting metabolic rate, body composition, and salivary cortisol in healthy adults."

National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health: "Probiotics: What You Need To Know."

National Institutes of Health: "Body Composition Changes in Weight Loss: Strategies and Supplementation for Maintaining Lean Body Mass, a Brief Review," "How many steps for better health?" "Impact of insufficient sleep on total daily energy expenditure, food intake, and weight gain," "Short Sleep Duration Is Associated with Reduced Leptin, Elevated Ghrelin, and Increased Body Mass Index."

National Library of Medicine: "Effect of long chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids on inflammation and metabolic markers in hypertensive and/or diabetic obese adults: a randomized controlled trial," "Sleep loss results in an elevation of cortisol levels the next evening," "Stress, cortisol, and obesity: a role for cortisol responsiveness in identifying individuals prone to obesity," "Sodium intake may promote weight gain; results of the FANPE study in a representative sample of the adult Spanish population."