By Sophie Haslett For Daily Mail Australia
03:21 14 Oct 2020, updated 05:31 14 Oct 2020
- Experts from The Healthy Mummy have shared how to slim your stomach down
- The stomach ‘overhang’ is a combination of visceral and subcutaneous fat
- To get rid of this, you need to cut some foods from your diet like chips and sugar
- You also need to focus on compound exercises that engage the entire body
You might find it hard to – stomach – but there are not one but two layers of fat standing in our way to a toned tummy.
Weight loss experts, however, say it is still possible to remove or reduce stomach ‘overhang’ by adopting a dedicated diet and fitness plan targeted at your belly.
While the stomach can be one of the hardest parts of the body to tone, small improvements could save your life as fat around the middle can cause serious health problems.
Health exerts from Australia’s leading weight loss program The Healthy Mummy said it’s important to remember the belly is made up of two types of fat.
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The top layer is called the subcutaneous fat which stores any unused calories around our waistline in the event one day our body might need those calories to survive.
‘It is is the soft, cushy fat that you can touch, feel and see staring back at you in the mirror,’ the Healthy Mummy team posted.
‘Basically, to lose the “overhang” you need to overcome thousands of years of human evolution dating back to caveman times when the threat of over eating was less prevalent.’
The second layer called the visceral fat which surrounds and protects our vital organs but is far more worrying.
‘It is much more active below the surface which plays havoc with your insulin resistance levels and can lead to more complicated health issues, which is yet another very good reason to work at losing ‘overhang’ stomach fat,’ the team said.
Below both layers of fat are often stomach muscles which get a workout when you squat or do sit-ups but without changing your diet, you’ll never see your abdominal muscles.
What are the nine foods to cut now?
1. Dairy products
2. Potato chips
3. Soft drinks
4. Fried foods
5. Processed baked goods
7. White flour and rice
9. Refined sugars and sweeteners
Which are the foods you should cut for visible abs?
The Healthy Mummy team said ditching dairy was the first step to losing belly fat.
‘If you are feeling bloated, try limiting the amount of milk, cheese, yoghurt, and ice cream you eat, and see if that helps,’ they suggested.
Other more obvious foods including potato chips and soft drinks should also be cut.
‘Most potato chip brands are cooked in hydrogenated oils,’ they said.
‘This type of oil is called a trans-fat. Trans-fat is known to increase cholesterol, contribute to heart disease and increase weight.’
Eliminating processed baked goods from your diet and any fried foods was also key.
‘Choose a small amount of regular butter or soft spread over margarine when topping foods or baking!’ they added.
Removing white flour and rice, cereals and any refined sugars and sweeteners such as honey from your diet will also help shed the kilos.
What are some of the other tips for slimming your stomach?
* Movement and regular exercise.
* Compound movements that engage the entire body.
* Consistency with your workouts: Do something everyday.
* Plenty of low-intensity-steady-state cardio like walking or swimming.
* Track your progress via measurements and progress photos, not the numbers on the scales.
What about exercise?
The key to a trim waistline is overall movement and regular exercise.
‘You need to move – a lot and often!’ the experts said.
While you might think that you need to do lots of squats, crunches and planks, in fact these ab targeted exercises will not by themselves work as you can’t spot reduce fat in any particular area.
Compound exercises which target several areas of your body at once – like mountain climbers, rowing and burpees – will have more impact.
Consistency is king, they added, so it’s a good idea to design a regular workout regime that involves moving your body every day through both cardio and resistance training.
You should also make sure you have some form of LISS (Low-Intensity Steady-State) every day, like walking or swimming.
Walking can go a long way towards toning those hard-to-reach areas like your lower abs and bum.
‘The key point to remember is that it will take time but if you keep going, it will be worth it,’ the Healthy Mummy said.
You should also never track your progress via the numbers on the scales, which may go up as your strength does, but rather you should take measurements and progress photographs.