Tue, 11/07/2017 - 09:00
fitness info and more right in your inbox.
One would hope this stuff would not be so secret anymore, but the amount of misinformation I see these days is staggering. So, let’s discuss exactly how you go about getting the elusive “six pack” or a super sexy flat tummy.
First, let’s dispel some very old misconceptions:
- You can’t spot reduce fat. So forget belly fat burning foods or exercises that only target your abs.
- Abs are made in the kitchen. Only half true. Yes, diet is critical, but what’s hiding those sinewy abdominals is subcutaneous fat. So to see that washboard of yours we have to burn off the fat and exercise is the best way to accomplish that.
Second, speaking of burning fat, let’s look at the most effective strategies to do that:
- Since we can’t spot reduce fat, the only way to ever get those flat abs is to burn body fat overall. For this reason, HIIT workouts, exercises that work multiple muscle groups simultaneously (like push ups, squat thrusters etc.), and weight lifting are going to be the most effective fitness strategies for bringing out your six pack because they are the most metabolic. Hours of cardio and tons of crunches are not the way forward here.
- Now, while there aren't foods that literally target burning belly fat, there ARE foods that can drive the production of certain hormones that can trigger our body to store more fat on our tummy. The two most infamous are cortisol and insulin. So, making sure to keep your processed sugar, refined flour, sodium content, and alcohol consumption low can go a long way toward helping you burn off the muffin top.
- Drink water. Contrary to another popular misconception there is no specific amount of water you should ingest. Everyone has different needs based on genetics, activity level, the environment they live in etc. The key is to drink water until your pee looks like lemonade. If it looks like apple juice keep drinking. The reason this helps flatten your tummy is two fold: hydration can boost fat metabolism by up to 3% and drinking water flushes out excess bloat and water weight you might be holding on to.
- Eat foods high in vitamin C. Citrus and berries are loaded with it of course. This is because it’s thought that vitamin C can help inhibit cortisol production.