- 10 Best Ways For Getting Flat Stomach
- Advantages Of Flat Stomach
- Things To Avoid To Get A Flat Stomach
- Frequently Asked Questions
Getting rid of excessive belly fat and obtaining a flat stomach is a common goal for many people seeking to improve their health and physical appearance.
Reducing belly fat may minimize the risk of weight gain, or chronic diseases. It may boost self-confidence, improve posture, and enhance energy levels and stamina.
Your stomach size and appearance could be influenced by factors like your dietary habits, exercise or physical activity levels, the time of the day, or health conditions.
This article will explore the best evidence-based approaches for getting a flat stomach. It will also disclose why you need to reduce stomach fat and mention the mistakes you must avoid in your belly fat reduction efforts.
10 Best Ways For Getting Flat Stomach
Create Calorie Deficit
Maintaining a caloric deficit by taking fewer calories than the body’s requirements is vital in
achieving a flatter stomach.
During a caloric deficit, the body is forced to utilize stored fat for energy production, potentially reducing belly fat and weight loss.
On average, women need to consume 2000 calories daily to sustain their current weight, with men averaging 2500 calories daily.
Reducing the calorie intake by 500–750 calories might result in approx 1–2 pounds of weight loss (per week). However, this range could differ based on age, gender, or activity levels.
Stay Properly Hydrated
Maintaining an adequate water intake throughout the day may flush out toxins and aid in eliminating excess water weight, which could make the stomach appear flatter.
Increasing water intake may raise resting energy expenditure or the number of calories burned when sedentary. Such effects could stimulate the body’s calorie-burning mechanism and aid in reducing weight and belly fat.
Water is naturally calorie-free and is associated with reducing calorie intake. People who drink water (instead of other beverages) have up to 9% (approx 200 calories) less total calorie intake than those who do not.
Try Cardiovascular Exercise
Aerobic or cardiovascular exercises may help burn calories, improve endurance and exercise capacity, and reduce body fat. These may include activities like biking, swimming, running, or HIIT workouts.
According to research studies, regular cardiovascular exercises could effectively strengthen the midsection and help reduce belly fat.
Cardiovascular exercises may aid in reducing overall body fat, including the belly area. They may help you achieve a flatter stomach by reducing the excess fat in the abdominal area.
Regular aerobic activities could increase heart rate, strengthen the heart muscle, and improve blood circulation. Such virtues could reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases like stroke and heart disease while boosting your endurance and stamina.
General guidelines recommend getting at least 150–300 minutes of moderate to high-intensity aerobic exercises weekly, roughly equating to 20–40 minutes daily.
Increase Fiber Intake
Fiber, especially soluble fiber, could absorb water and delay the passage of food into the digestive tract. Such effects may result in stomach expansion, making you feel fuller between meals.
It may improve feelings of satiety by delaying stomach emptying, which helps curb the tendency to overeat. Such a mechanism could make maintaining a calorie deficit easier and also help reduce belly fat.
Increasing fiber intake may minimize the risk of developing visceral fat, which accumulates around the organs.
Aiming for a daily intake of 25-30 grams of fiber is recommended. However, gradually increase the fiber intake to allow your body to adjust.
Drinking plenty of water is also essential when increasing fiber intake, as it could prevent constipation and aid digestion.
Choose Unprocessed Food
Unprocessed foods are nutrient-rich and free from additives, which could support a healthy body and help shed excess weight.
Whole, unprocessed foods contain essential minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that could nourish the body and support overall health.
Unprocessed foods typically contain fewer calories and higher fiber content than processed options. Such a combination may regulate hunger and prevent overeating, making maintaining a calorie deficit easier and promoting fat loss.
The body could easily break down whole or unprocessed foods, promoting optimal digestion and reducing the likelihood of digestive issues.
Consider Resistance Training
Resistance training includes bodyweight exercises and weightlifting, which could enhance muscle mass and increase metabolism. It might help reduce total body fat and visceral fat, improving overall body composition.
With more muscles, the body could burn calories more effectively, even at rest. Such a mechanism could help burn fat more efficiently, leading to a flat stomach.
As per a study, you could aim for 2 to 3 weekly resistance training sessions to tone your stomach while supporting your muscles, tendons, and overall strength.
Increase Probiotics Intake
Probiotics could help maintain a healthy gut microbiome balance, positively impacting weight management. Changes in the gut microbiome composition may increase the risk of obesity.
Certain strains of probiotics, like Lactobacillus fermentum, Lactobacillus amylovorus, and Lactobacillus gasseri, might reduce belly fat.
Probiotics could improve digestion and support regular bowel movements, which might help reduce bloating and contribute to a flatter stomach. They may aid in food breakdown, absorbing nutrients, and preventing constipation.
Consume Monounsaturated Fats
Research studies indicate that diets rich in monounsaturated fatty acids could be associated with decreased body weight.
Monounsaturated fats lead to greater fat burning, increased satiety, and reduced body fat (particularly abdominal fat) compared to saturated fats. Such effects may improve body composition and help you get a flatter stomach.
Foods like avocados, olive oil, nuts, and seeds are great sources of monounsaturated fat and could be used in cooking or as a salad dressing. Nuts like almonds and walnuts may be enjoyed as a snack or added to meals for extra crunch and flavor.
Getting Enough Sleep
Lack of sleep may disrupt the ghrelin and leptin hormones that regulate appetite. Insufficient sleep could raise ghrelin levels (making you hungrier) and decrease leptin levels (reducing feeling of fullness). Such hormonal imbalances may result in overeating and belly fat storage.
A research study found better sleep quality and quantity associated with more significant weight loss and fat loss outcomes in a 12-month intervention period.
Sleep deprivation may enhance cortisol (stress hormone) levels, which enhances fat storage, especially around the midsection.
Most adults must procure at least seven hours of daily sleep to maintain a moderate weight and support overall health.
Maintaining a conducive sleep environment, limiting electronic usage before bedtime, and avoiding caffeine intake close to the evening could help induce quality sleep.
Manage Stress Level
Chronic stress is associated with the development of multiple diseases, including obesity, diabetes, heart disease, etc. It might also contribute to emotional eating or overeating, which may induce weight gain and belly fat accumulation.
Unchecked stress levels may trigger the body to release cortisol, a stress hormone that could increase visceral fat storage, especially around the abdomen. Such effects could lead to a protruding belly and cause weight gain.
Though complete alleviation of stress is not possible, including stress-relieving activities like yoga, a de-stressing walk, or meditation could help reduce elevated stress.
Adopting stress management techniques may negate the effects of stress on the body.
Technique Description Benefits Meditation Practice focusing your mind and achieving a state of calm and relaxation. Reduces stress levels, improves mental clarity, and promotes emotional well-being. Yoga Engage in physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation to promote relaxation and balance. Relieves stress, improves strength and flexibility, and enhances overall well-being. Deep Breathing Take slow, controlled breaths to activate the body’s relaxation response and reduce stress. It calms the mind, reduces anxiety and tension, and promotes a sense of calm and relaxation.
Advantages Of Flat Stomach
Improve Balance & Posture
When the core muscles are strong, they could stabilize the entire body. Such stability may allow you to maintain proper form and alignment during exercises, reducing the risk of injury and maximizing workout effectiveness.
With good posture, your stomach appears flatter as the abdominal muscles are engaged, pulling your stomach inwards.
Proper spine alignment could relieve strain on your back muscles, minimizing the likelihood of back pain and discomfort.
Core strength is vital for maintaining balance, especially during activities that may require stability and coordination.
Enhance Physical Appearance
A flat stomach could enhance the aesthetic appeal of your physique and improve your overall appearance.
With a flat stomach, your clothes fit better, and you feel more comfortable and confident in your own skin. A flat stomach makes you look more toned and fit, boosting your self-confidence and overall well-being.
Support a Healthy Digestive System
Excessive belly fat may strain the digestive system, resulting in discomfort and digestive issues like bloating, excessive gassiness, or stool inconsistency.
Maintaining a flat stomach could help reduce the risk of such digestive concerns and support healthy weight management.
Excessive belly fat accumulation might induce the colon to overproduce liquid, potentially leading to loose stools. Therefore, losing excess belly fat is vital for optimizing digestive health and function.
Enhance Sleep Quality
Scientific studies have linked having excessive belly fat to sleep apnea and other sleep disorders.
Excess belly fat could block the airways during sleep – either partially or entirely. These temporary blockages may cause you to wake up frequently throughout the night. Such effects might increase the risk of developing stroke, heart disease, or high blood pressure.
You could improve your sleep quality and wake up feeling refreshed and energized by targeting belly fat reduction.
Reduce Chronic Condition Risks
You may significantly decrease your risk of these chronic diseases by reducing visceral fat and achieving a flat stomach.
Excess visceral fat accumulates around the abdominal organs and could be associated with inflammation and insulin resistance. These conditions may contribute to the development of chronic diseases.
Visceral fat releases harmful substances called cytokines, which encourage inflammation and raise the risk of heart disease.
Things To Avoid To Get A Flat Stomach
Staying mindful of certain habits and food choices that may hinder your belly fat reduction efforts is essential. Here are some things to avoid to achieve a flatter stomach:
- Sugary Foods and Drinks: These may contribute to belly fat accumulation and unwanted bloating. Avoid sugary sodas, desserts, candies, and juices to keep your waistline in check.
- Refined Carbohydrates: Foods with highly refined carbohydrates, like white bread, pastries, and pasta, may cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels. These spikes might lead to weight gain and belly fat. Opt for whole-grain substitutes instead.
- Unhealthy Foods: Processed and junk foods have high-calorie content and low nutritional value. These foods must be kept to a minimum to achieve a flat stomach. Instead, focus on whole, nutrient-dense foods like lean proteins, vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
- Dehydration: Staying hydrated by drinking sufficient water could reduce bloating and support smoother digestion, ultimately aiding your efforts for a flatter midsection.
- Lack of sleep: Sleep deficiency may raise cortisol (stress hormone) levels. Such a mechanism might trigger excessive fat accumulation, especially around the midsection.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How Long Does It Typically Take to See Results in Achieving a Flat Stomach?
The time it takes to see results in achieving a flat stomach varies depending on factors such as individual metabolism, body composition, and adherence to a healthy diet and exercise routine.
Some people may observe noticeable results within three weeks, while others may take up to 12 weeks or longer to notice any changes.
- Can Certain Exercises Target Belly Fat Specifically?
There are no specific exercises that target belly fat exclusively. However, combining strength training, aerobic exercise, and a nutritionally adequate diet may help reduce overall body fat, including belly fat.
- Can I Still Have Cheat Meals While Trying to Get a Flat Stomach?
While trying to achieve a flat stomach, striving for a caloric deficit and consuming nutritious meals is essential. However, occasional cheat meals in moderation could be acceptable if they do not hinder overall progress and adherence to healthy eating habits.
- Is It Possible to Get a Flat Stomach Without Exercise?
Achieving a flat stomach without exercise might be possible, but it is not the most effective approach. Including a consistent exercise regimen with a balanced diet is essential for long-term results and overall health.
Achieving a flat stomach may provide numerous health benefits, including minimizing the likelihood of developing chronic diseases and enhancing physical performance.
You need to implement strategies like creating a calorie deficit, consuming weight-loss-friendly foods, and increasing your fiber intake to work towards achieving a flat tummy.
Pairing these dietary measures with a consistent exercise routine, including aerobic exercises and strength training, could be beneficial in burning calories and reducing belly fat.
Healthy lifestyle choices such as hydrating sufficiently, getting enough sleep, maintaining a moderate weight, and managing stress may aid in your belly fat reduction efforts.
Rachel has been a freelance medical writer for more than 18 years. She graduated from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 2005 and is currently practicing as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist at a Level I trauma center.