Want To Eliminate Muffin Top?

Let me start out with an unfortunate dose of reality— It’s impossible to target belly fat specifically when you diet or exercise, so save your money on the exercise gimmicks and videos promising a flat stomach.

However, losing weight overall will help shrink your waistline; more importantly, it will help reduce the dangerous layer of visceral fat, a type of fat within the abdominal cavity that you can’t see but that heightens health risks, says Kerry Stewart, Ed.D. , director of Clinical and Research Physiology at Johns Hopkins.



When Johns Hopkins researchers compared the effects on the heart of losing weight through a low-carbohydrate diet versus a low-fat diet for six months—each containing the same amount of calories—those on a low-carb diet lost an average of 10 pounds more than those on a low-fat diet—28.9 pounds versus 18.7 pounds. An extra benefit of the low-carb diet is that it produced a higher quality of weight loss. With weight loss, fat is reduced, but there is also often a loss of lean tissue (muscle), which is not desirable. On both diets, there was a loss of about 2 to 3 pounds of good lean tissue along with the fat, which means that the fat loss percentage was much higher on the low-carb diet.

Understand that removing problem carbs from your diet DOES NOT mean eliminating carbs altogether. We aren’t promoting the Keto Diet here. That said, removing processed foods and eating only clean carbs (vegetables, whole fruit, legumes, potatoes, and whole grains) will make a world of difference in your ability to shed unwanted pounds.

Ultimately, you need to pick a healthy eating plan you can stick to. The benefit of a low-carb approach is that it simply involves learning better food choices and one side benefit of making better food choices is that you won’t have to count calories. In general, a lower-carb diet shifts your intake away from problem foods—those high in carbs and sugar and without much fiber, such as bread, bagels, muffins, packaged snacks, and sodas—and toward high-fiber or high-protein choices, like vegetables, beans, fruits, and healthy lean meats.


Physical activity helps burn abdominal fat. One of the biggest benefits of exercise is that you get a lot of bang for your buck on body composition. Exercise works off belly fat in particular because it reduces circulating levels of insulin —which would otherwise signal the body to hang on to fat—and causes the liver to use up fatty acids, especially those nearby visceral fat deposits.

The amount of exercise you need for weight loss depends on your goals. For most people, this can be accomplished with just 20 minutes of HIIT exercise every other day coupled with moderate strength training on the other days.

Adding even moderate strength training to aerobic exercise helps build lean muscle mass, which causes you to burn more calories throughout the entire day, both at rest and during exercise.


Compare and contrast brands. Some yogurts, for example, boast that they’re low in fat, but they’re higher in carbs and added sugars than others. Foods like gravy, mayonnaise, sauces and salad dressings often contain high amounts of fat and lots of calories.

The ingredients in packaged goods and snack foods are often heavy on trans fats, added sugar and added salt (or sodium)—three things that make it difficult to lose weight.


During the first few months of healthy eating and exercise, stay off the scale. It may discourage you because the number may not change a lot. As you add muscle mass and lose fat, the reading on your bathroom scale may not change much, but your pants will be looser. That’s a better mark of progress. Measured around, your waistline should be less than 35 inches if you’re a woman or less than 40 inches if you’re a man to reduce heart and diabetes risks. Of course, these measurements are just minimum standards. The lower the measurement around your waistline, the lower your risk of obesity related ailments.


Research shows that you’re more apt to eat better and exercise more if your friends and family are doing the same.

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