Five Tips for a Tighter-Looking Tummy
Are you doing hundreds of abdominal crunches a day and following a strict diet, but not seeing any tone or definition in your stomach? Sometimes it helps to switch up your routine and incorporate some new tips and tricks. Try these suggestions, compiled by Dr. Ronald DeMars.
1. Practice HIIT
You may believe the key to a tighter tummy is doing hundreds of abdominal crunches. When performed correctly, crunches are helpful, but cardio exercise is also very important for blasting belly fat and revealing definition in the abdominal area.
Fitness gurus suggest high-intensity interval training, like outdoor sprints, for a quick and effective cardio workout. FitnessRx for Women recommends the following plan: After a light warm-up and stretch, alternate quick bursts of 50-yard sprints with a 30-second rest. Repeat six times. Then, alternate 100-yard sprints with a 30-second rest. Complete your workout with a cool-down jog and more stretching. If you don’t like running, try a HIIT cardio kickboxing workout using an at-home DVD or by joining a class at the gym. With regular HIIT sessions, the fat will start to melt off your stomach and your waist will look smaller.
2. Eat Every Three to Four Hours
It may seem counterintuitive to eat every few hours to slim your stomach, but it is actually good to eat small, nutritious meals throughout the day. Skipping meals can cause your blood sugar to plummet and your body to store fat due to fear of starvation. Eating every three to four hours is critical to stabilizing your blood sugar levels, so your body is less likely to store fat around your midsection.
The most common lag between meals is waiting five to six hours between lunch and dinner. To avoid a drop in your blood sugar, eat a snack between 3PM and 4PM. Keep in mind that “a snack” doesn’t mean a candy bar or bag of chips. Instead, reach for a protein bar, piece of low-fat cheese or handful of almonds with an apple.
3. Decrease Bloating
To prevent bloat, look at what you’re eating and how you’re eating it. Dawn Jackson Blatner, a registered dietician and author of “The Flexitarian Diet,” points out that proper digestion is key to controlling gas and bloating. Digestion begins in the mouth, she says, and if food is not chewed properly, the body won’t digest it well. Dawn suggests chewing your food until it is the consistency of applesauce.
Another key to reducing bloat is watching your sodium intake. Try to stay away from traditional table salt in favor of natural sea salt or kosher salt, which are lower in sodium. Or, look for creative alternatives to infuse flavor into your meals. Susan Irby, the author of “Substitute Yourself Skinny,” recommends fresh tomato salsa or cayenne pepper.
4. Camouflage Your Middle
If you’re still struggling with a flabby belly, divert attention away from it and play up a different body part through your clothing and accessories. For example, wear slim pants or skirts to draw attention to great legs. Wear a blouse with a boatneck or sweetheart neckline, or a statement necklace or pair of earrings to attract attention toward your neck and shoulders.
5. Consider Surgical Enhancement
Surgical correction is a great option to think about if you have exhausted every other option trying to tighten and tone your stomach. Liposuction will reduce localized fat deposits and improve the contour of the stomach. Tummy tuck offers more comprehensive correction by targeting excess fat, loose skin and weakened/separated abdominal muscles.
Dr. DeMars invites you to schedule a consultation to discuss your surgical options in more detail. He would be happy to explain how these procedures can help you enjoy the body you deserve.
To schedule an appointment, please call (503) 253-3458 or send us an email.