8 Ways to Lose Belly Fat and Live a Healthier Life

When Johns Hopkins researchers compared the effects on the heart of losing weight with a low-carbohydrate diet versus a low-fat diet for six months—both containing the same number 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.

Try curbing carbs instead of fats.

Finally, Stewart recommends choosing a healthy eating plan that you can stick to. A low-carb approach has the advantage of requiring no calorie counting—it simply includes learning to make better eating choices.

Think eating plan, not diet.

Physical activity promotes the loss of abdominal fat. "One of the biggest benefits of exercise is that you get a lot of bang for your buck on body composition," Stewart said. 

Keep moving.

Even moderate strength training combined with aerobic exercise helps grow lean muscle mass, causing you to burn more calories throughout the day, both at rest and while exercising.

Lift weights.

Compare and contrast brands. Some yogurts, for example, claim to be low in fat, but they include more carbohydrates and added sugars than others, according to Stewart. 

Become a label reader.

Packaged products and snack meals frequently contain high levels of trans fats, added sugar, and added salt or sodium—all of which make weight loss harder.

Move away from processed foods.

The number on your bathroom scale may not vary much as you gain muscle mass and reduce fat, but your jeans will become looser. That's a better indicator of progress. 

Focus on the way your clothes fit more than reading a scale.

According to research, if your friends and family are eating healthier and exercising more, you are more likely to do so as well.

Hang out with health-focused friends

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