How to Blast Away a Jelly Belly

by Yuen Yi Ying
WEIGHT LOSS  |  August 14, 2017
  • Watch Out for the Halo Effect
    1 / 5 Watch Out for the Halo Effect

    Are you a fan of coffee or diet beverages? You may be consuming less calories than those who prefer alcoholic or sugary drinks, but making up the caloric difference with junk food, warns a study by the US-based University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Basing his observations on a decade’s worth of statistics from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, researcher Ruopeng An, a kinesiology and community health professor at the university, thinks it might be a “compensation effect”, where those who saved on liquid calories “feel justified in eating more, so they reach for a muffin or a bag of chips”. Alternatively, he posits that they eat more high-calorie foods in order to feel satisfied. Yet another possibility is that those who eat high-energy low-nutrition foods tend to reach for diet drinks to alleviate their guilt. Either way, these are good points to remember when you think you’re picking the better drink.

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  • Go for Greens
    2 / 5 Go for Greens

    Largely caused by a calorie-rich diet and stress, visceral fat looms menacingly around vital organs and has been linked to multiple health issues including intestinal cancer, metabolic imbalances, high blood pressure, diabetes, and fatty liver disease. One solution proposed by experts is to get more soluble fibre (think oats, apples, nuts and legumes), which seems to prevent fat accumulation. Research by Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in the US found that every 10-gram increase in soluble fiber per day (roughly two small apples, or a cup of beans) helps decrease visceral fat by 3.7 per cent over five years. The American Journal of Physiology also published a study where soluble fibre was lauded for improving gut structure, which prevented fat gain.

    (Also Read: 5 Easy Ways To Sneak More Fibre Into Your Meals)

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  • Try Canola Oil
    3 / 5 Try Canola Oil

    Olive oil usually gets all the attention, but a recent study by Penn State in the US revealed that canola oil, made from the rapeseed plant, should get some of your love too. Apparently, after just four weeks of incorporating it into their diet, participants in the research were found to have less belly fat, and what’s more impressive, the fat didn’t seem to have redistributed elsewhere in the body. It’s a real real feat, considering most experts agree that targeted weight loss is difficult, but according to researcher Penny M. Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition at the university, “monounsaturated fatty acids seem to specifically target abdominal fat”.

    (Also Read: 8 Foods That Help You Burn More Calories)

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  • Work Out Before Breakfast
    4 / 5 Work Out Before Breakfast

    No surprises here, but exercise burns fat. However, you can reap more benefits by getting your heart racing early in the day. One obvious reason is getting your workout done and dusted for the day, before excuses fill your mind and unexpected late shifts or activities pop up. Another upside is you can burn up to 20 per cent more fat if you exercise before breakfast, shares research from Northumbria University in the UK. By exercising on an empty stomach, you encourage burning of existing fat, and this apparently doesn’t increase appetite or cause you to eat more through the day.

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  • Lift Some Weights
    5 / 5 Lift Some Weights

    We lose muscle mass as we age, giving rise to that mid-body jiggle. In the US, Harvard researchers say 20 minutes of daily weight training works better than aerobic exercise to maintain muscle mass while trimming your waistline, but combining both produces even better results. Though this study was conducted on men, 10,500 of them, it wouldn’t hurt for ladies to test out this theory too.

    (Also Read: Want to Lose Weight & Sculpt Your Body? Start Weightlifting)

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