Belly fat is a most common and major health concern that many people are struggling with nowadays. Belly fat, also known as visceral fat, lies around the midsection and can go deeper than just below the surface of the skin. This visceral fat surrounds your internal vital organs like the heart, lungs, and liver.

This belly fat or visceral fat is different to other types of body fats as it is more active metabolically. This means, it enters your bloodstream quicker than fat under the skin. Belly fat may have a negative influence on cholesterol and blood sugar levels, which can affect metabolism. Belly fat is independent of other body fats. To say clearly a person can have excess fat on their waistline even if they’re thin with flat abdomen and not fatty elsewhere.

 One should take into account that it’s normal to carry some weight around your middle but excess of this visceral fat is harmful. Belly fat not only embarrasses to show off your stomach but this belly fat or visceral fat also directly links to disturbances in metabolism leading to obesity, appetite regulation, inflammation, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. For women, it is also linked with breast cancer and the risk of gallbladder surgery.

Belly fat has been linked to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke by one-third in men and one-quarter in women. And visceral fat has been linked to an increased risk for diabetes by 90%. Belly fat also increases the risk of dementia by up to 75%.

Belly fat is caused by many factors such as diet, overweight, lifestyle changes, and genetics. Some of the best ways to get rid of belly fat are by eating healthy and exercising regularly. This will help you maintain your weight and keep your body in shape. Maintaining a trim waistline not only makes you look great but also helps you live longer, contributing to your health. Losing weight, especially around the tummy will help improve blood vessel function which leads to fuller, happier lives.

Most people struggle to avoid fat buildup in their abdominal area when they cut calories. It’s important to know that you can’t spot reduce your belly fat, which means you need to focus on all areas of your body if you want an even distribution of weight loss throughout your whole body instead of just focusing on one area. 


Belly fat is a common health problem that can lead to various health complications. Belly fat is a form of visceral fat is found deep within the abdomen around the intestines and other vital organs. The causes of belly fat are many, but the most common ones are overeating and lack of exercise. Here are a few common causes why people may have excess fat in their abdominal area.

  • Unhealthy food habits:

The type of food we eat plays a significant role as it has an effect on your weight and where you store it on your body. For example, high-carbohydrate diets can increase abdominal fat storage because carbs turn into sugar in the liver and get converted into fat.

Sugary food, such as cakes and candy, and drinks, such as sodas and fruit juices can cause weight gain or reduce your ability to burn fat. 

Low-protein diets are also associated with weight gain. Proteins give people a feeling of fullness for longer, and people on these diets may be eating more due to a lack of proteins in their diet.

trans fats, in particular, lead to inflammation and may even cause obesity. Trans fats are found in many foods that are baked goods and fast foods. 

Include whole grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables, omega-3 fatty acids, nuts, limiting saturated fats, and avoiding trans fats in order to promote a healthier lifestyle.

Reading the nutritional information labels before buying the products is a good idea to check and determine the nutrients in that particular food product. 

  • Genetics:

Researchers have found that genetics can play a role in the distribution of fat in your body. For example, people who are overweight and have a genetic predisposition to obesity may store fatter around their abdomen than in other parts of their body.

Genes can influence behavioral factors, the body’s metabolism, and increases the risk of developing obesity-related diseases. Researchers have found that some genetic mutations are linked to higher body mass index (BMI).

Environmental factors and behavioral factors can affect a person’s chance of becoming obese.

  • Lifestyle Habits:

One factor that can lead to abdominal obesity is overeating or not getting enough exercise. This type of weight gain usually accumulates over time and can be difficult to lose because it’s stored in the belly area.

Belly fat is a result of our lifestyles. The more sedentary we are, the more belly fat we accumulate.

If a person eats more calories than they burn off, it leads to weight gain. People can have trouble losing weight when they lead a sedentary lifestyle. This makes it hard to burn off extra fat and especially around the abdominal region.

  • Excessive alcohol consumption:

Drinking too much alcohol can cause a range of health problems, including liver disease and inflammation. Alcohol consumption and obesity have been linked to increasing in belly fat in men. 

  • Stress:

Cortisol is a steroid hormone that regulates and controls stress. It’s released in times of high pressure, which can impact metabolism.

Stress can lead people to comfort food and unfortunately, this usually leads to weight gain. Cortisol causes excess calories to be stored in the body’s fat cells, especially around the belly.

  • Lack of sleep:

A study from 2013 links weight gain to a lack of sleep that could lead to fat around the waist. Lack of sleep is linked with increased intake of food. This may partially contribute to the development of abdominal fat.

Not enough good sleep may lead to unhealthy eating habits like emotional eating behavior.

  • Smoking:

A study found that smoking doesn’t lead to obesity, but smokers will have more visceral and belly fat than non-smokers.


Here are some effective steps to get rid of belly fat –

Improve the quality of your diet:

Healthy dietary habits can help lose belly fat. One of the most important things to do is to eat a healthy and balanced diet with a variety of foods. Healthy food habits not only help to lose belly fat but also have a great positive effect on overall well-being. Including complex carbohydrates, good quality protein, healthy fats, and micronutrients in your diet support losing belly fat. You should also try to avoid eating too much-processed food, sugary drinks, and refined grains. Healthy food choices with lesser calories at regular intervals can lead you to lose fat around the abdomen. Here are some tips for a healthy diet:

Include soluble fiber in your diet:

Fiber is important for losing belly fat because it slows down the digestion process and makes you feel full. Soluble fibers are a kind of dietary fiber not digested by the body but instead help to regulate metabolism.

Soluble fiber allows the digestive system to work more efficiently. It delays the process of food passage from the stomach to the intestine. Soluble fiber helps you feel full and satisfied more quickly and for a longer time, it also reduces hunger, which in turn reduces the quantity of food intake during and between your meals and thus reduces calorie intake. Soluble fiber not only helps in losing belly fat but also helps in improving overall health. It lowers cholesterol and regulates blood sugar levels. Eating more fibrous food also makes you eat less processed foods.

Soluble fiber is found in whole grains – brown rice, quinoa, barley, legumes – beans, peas, lentils, oats, seeds like chia seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, and fruits – avocado, berries, prunes, vegetables, and psyllium husks.

 Include healthy carbohydrates in your diet:

Carbohydrates are energy sources for our body but all carbohydrates are not healthy. Simple carbohydrates quickly transform into simple sugars like glucose. Excess glucose in the body than required stores as fat especially around the mid-region. So limiting refined or simple carbohydrates in the diet is beneficial in reducing belly fat. As carbohydrates are essential for the body for energy requirements choose complex carbohydrates over refined carbs. But still moderate or low intake is important for fat loss.

Whole grains like brown rice, bajra, jowar and whole grain products like whole wheat bread, and oatmeal are good sources of complex carbs whereas processed foods, bakery foods, and junk are examples of simple carbs.

High biological value protein in your diet:

Protein helps in muscle growth, repair, and bodybuilding. Protein plays a key role in weight management. High protein intake helps you feel full and satiated. Protein lowers the release of hunger hormone levels and decreases appetite which makes you feel full and even helps you eat less in later meals. Protein helps raise in metabolic rate and also helps during your weight loss by retaining muscle mass. 

Including high biological value protein is beneficial. Animal sources like fish, lean meat, eggs are some of the high biological proteins. Dairy, whey, nuts, legumes, beans, seeds are other good sources of protein.

Include good fats in your diet:

Eating healthy fatty acids may be beneficial as they provide energy to the body, aid nutrient absorption and help fight hunger. These healthy fatty acids can improve the diet quality, which may help to achieve a flatter abdomen.

Trans fats or saturated fats are unhealthy and are linked to many health disorders. Trans fats are responsible for inflammation, insulin resistance, heart diseases, and weight gain. Some studies show that eating a high amount of trans fat can cause an increase in belly fat. These trans fats are often called partially hydrogenated fats.

Including good fats or mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids and limiting or avoiding trans fats in your diet helps in reducing abdominal belly fat and in overall weight management., so regardless of your weight goals, it’s a good idea to limit or cut back on the intake of these fats for overall wellbeing.

Fish like Salmon, Avocados, nuts, and seeds, oils like sesame oil, olive oil, and unsweetened peanut butter are good sources of monounsaturated fatty acids.

Stay away from high calorie drinks and added sugars:

High calorie beverages and sugars are loaded with fructose with few or no nutrients. Drinking these beverages makes you indulge more calories in your diet without realizing. These drinks can quickly cause a rise in blood sugar levels, causing the body to store more fat around the midsection. Simple sugars or fructose are directly related to increased abdominal fat. These sugars are linked with many chronic disease like type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease and fatty liver. Avoid all these added and liquid forms of sugars to reduce belly fat. 

Soft drinks, sodas, punch, cola drinks, sweetened fruit juices, energy drinks, milk-based beverages like sweetened coffee, and tea, and alcoholic beverages are some of the high-calorie beverages which contain no nutrients except extra calories. Replace them with coconut water, diluted butter milk, unsweetened and unstrained fruit juices, hot water with lemon or any other fruit, and unsweetened teas.

Avoid alcoholic beverages:

Alcohol contains more calories which leads fat gain around addition few drinks with alcohol like cocktails are loaded with added sugars.

Studies have shown that excessive alcohol consumption is linked with an increased risk of central obesity (fat storage around the abdomen).

Limiting the intake of alcohol may help reduce belly fat gain.

De-stress yourself:

If you are stressed, your body might be releasing cortisol, a stress hormone into the bloodstream.  Recent research suggests that the higher the amount of cortisol in your bloodstream, the more visceral fat. Higher levels of Cortisol in the blood increases or boosts appetite which in turn leads to more fat around midsection.

When we are stressed, people tend to eat more and less mindful for comfort or to distract or relieve themselves from the stress. This may also be a reason for abdominal fat gain. 

Controlled breaths, yoga, meditation, taking time out/breaks, and physical activity are few ways that may help relieve stress.

Be more active physically:

Exercises that make you sweat and increase your heart rate can help you lose weight. They help you reduce total body fat, especially if other lifestyle changes are made as well. More physical activity along with healthy food preferences together have a great impact in reducing visceral fat.

Daily stretches, walking in combination with cardio or aerobic and core strengthening and resistance training exercises are very crucial in the reduction of weight gain especially visceral fat around belly region.

Sound sleep:

A good sound sleep is very has a great impact on our overall health. Sleep also boosts our immune function, and improves productivity and mood swings.

Inadequate sleep leads to weight gain. Sleep apnea is a condition where breathing stops in between during the night. This sleep apnea has an effect in increasing visceral fat.

Ghrelin and leptin are appetite-stimulating hormones. When we have deprived of sleep it affects these hormones which makes us eat more.

A good consistent sound sleep helps in reducing belly fat and improving overall health.

Turning off electronics, regular sleep timing, regular exercise, supper before 2hrs of sleep, regular exercise, avoiding caffeinated and alcoholic beverages before bedtime are a few considerations to take in for quality sleep.

Track and monitor what you eat and how much you are active:

Tracking food intake and exercise can set them up for success for those who are trying to lose their belly fat. Self-monitoring what we eat and how much exercise we get can lead to better results. By monitoring your meals, makes you more likely to make healthier eating decisions. It helps you rethink and turn you to healthier choices. Tracking your activity motivates you to lace up.

Food dairy, food, and fitness trackers on smart watches or apps are few ways which help you to monitor how many calories you are taking in and how many you are burning out.

Chew your food more:

Due to rushing, many people do not sense that they are full until they’ve already consumed too many calories. Eating quickly can also cause bloating and gas. Chewing more helps you eat less and also aids in digestion which in turn helps in reducing belly fat.

Include probiotics in your diet:

Probiotics have many health benefits. These are bacteria that improve gut health and immune function. Studies have shown that the right amount of bacteria can indeed play a key role in weight regulation and that it can even contribute to weight loss, including belly fat. 

Intermittent fasting:

Intermittent fasting has grown in popularity as of late, mostly because it is an efficient weight loss method. Intermittent fasting is an eating process that cycles between periods of fasting and eating.

One way to do intermittent fasting is to fast for 24 hours once or twice a week. Another method consists of 16 hours of fasting and 8 hours of eating per day.

There may be a decrease in abdominal fat or belly fat with intermittent and alternate-day fasting.

The bottom line:

There is no such solution to lose belly fat. Dedication, determination and effort definitely gives fruitful results.

Adopting strictly the above mentioned food strategies and life style changes will make you lose your belly fat.